Once upon a time, then media considered Megastar Chiranjeevi, Natasimham Nandamuri Balakrishna, King Nagarjuna and Victory Venkatesh as four big stars of Tollywood. And they were absolutely right. But then, there was a drastic difference between the stardom levels of Chiranjeevi and other three big heroes. Chiranjeevi's flop films' collections were on par with the hit film collections of other three heroes.
That's why, anti media of Chiranjeevi would write much about the stardom of neighbouring film industry's number one hero Rajinikanth which actually was a shameful issue to the Telugu media.
Comparatively, Chiranjeevi's success graph was much higher than rest of the three heroes. And when industry hits are considered, Chiranjeevi delivered 9 industry hits to Tollywood including non BB IH Khaidi Number 150. Delivering 9 IHs is an all time record of 89 years of Tollywood history. Balakrishna gave three IHs while Venkatesh scored one industry hit.
Since Chiranjeevi's super stardom was exceptionally too higher in those days, he is able to maintain the same stardom even today.
In contrast, other heroes couldn't maintain the same stardom right now as they were not as big stars as Chiranjeevi then. Having gone through their films in the recent decades, it must be admitted they were out of race in big league heroes. Balakrishna's Gautamiputra Satakarni and Nagarjuna's Soggade Chinni Nayana scored close to 48 crores share collections each and stood as the biggest grossers among the actors careers.
On the contrary, Megastar's KN 150 collected Rs.105 crores and Sye Raa collected Rs.146 crores respectively. Moreover his upcoming film Acharya stands one of the craziest films of Tollywood right now.
Venkatesh, however, is scoring huge hits with multi-starrer combinations.
At this juncture, Balakrishna and Nagarjuna need a lot of exercise to get them inducted into big league (tier A) stars.