Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Belated Honour

Film Director K.S. Sethumadhavan

There is a well known saying "It is better late, than never" It had happened in the case of Veteran Malayalam Film Director K.S. Sethumadhavan. He was recently chosen for the 2009 J.C. Daniel award for his outstanding contribution to Malayalam cinema. Though the award had been instituted in 1992, his name, some how had been overlooked for so many years! His contribution to Malayalam cinema over the years consistantly can never be ignored by any serious film viewer. If you take a list of outstanding films of the sixties and seventies a number of films directed by him will have their rightful place. He was the pioneer "middle of the road" film maker who blended in his films artistic values and commercial elements and made family entertainers.

At last this anamoly of not honouring him with the J.C Daniel Award was rectified! I am happy to be a part of the jury headed by eminent director K G George with Kaviyoor Ponnamma and state Chalchitra Academy chairman K R Mohanan as members that selected Sethumadhavan for the award recognising his simple narratives connecting literature to Malayalam Cinema.

Minister for Education and Culture M.A. Baby Announces the Award

I have fond recollections of working with him, many years back in two Malayalam films directed by him - AMME ANUPAME ( B&W 1977) and NAKSHATRANGALE KAAVAL (1978). He was a strict disciplinarian on the sets and very friendly after shooting hours. He never worked extended hours and with his meticulous planning, he finished films well in time and within the budget. He always was very sure of his shot takings and never wasted film footage and used to complete feature films utilizing only 20 to 25 thousand feet of raw stock! During the film, NAKSHATRANGALE KAAVAL's shooting we were staying in one room at Tara hotel ( now SUT Hospital, Pattom Palace ) and our after shooting hours were spent in discussing a wide range of topics under the sun. I was amazed at his extensive knowledge and wealth of reading. It is rare to come across such persons in our film Industry.

We were together again a few years back, as part of South Indian Cinematographers' Association's SICA Film Award Jury at Chennai and renewed relationships.

We both as SICA Award Jury Members

Past J.C.Daniel Awards

1992 T.E. Vasudevan

1993 Thikkurissy Sukumaran Nair

1994 P. Bhaskaran

1995 Abhayadev

1996 A. Vincent

1997 K. Raghavan

1998 V. Dakshinamurthy

1999 G. Devarajan

2000 M. Krishnan Nair

2001 P.N. Menon

2002 K. J. Yesudas

2004 Madhu

2005 Aranmula Ponnamma

2006 Mankada Ravivarma

2007 P Ramadas

2008 K Raveendran Nair

2009 K S Sethumadhavan

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