Saturday, February 23, 2013

Assistant Directors who became Directors...

During my long career I have worked with many talented people who started their career as  Assistant Directors and later on  proved their ability to become well known Directors. The list is quite long starting with M.Azad in my first film Vidyarthikale Ithile Ithile to Priyadarshan, Sibi Malayil, Matthew Paul in Padayottam, Sathyan Anthikkad and P. Chandra Kumar with Director Jesey's films.

M.T. ( L) Azad (R) with Sukumaran looking up

Sathyan Anthikkad (L) Director Jesey (sitting) and P.Chanda Kumar (R)


Rajan Sankaradi, Shajiyem  and  R.Gopinath can be seen in the photo below taken on Director Balachandra Menon's film Maniyan Pilla adhava Maniyan Pilla. Raju, Ambika and Cinematographer Nambiyathri  can also been seen.

Rajan Sankaradi, Shajiyem, R. Gopinath with Balachandra Menon
Viji Thampi  also had worked in some of Balachandra Menon's film  like Achuvettende Veedu, a location still from the film is given below.

Balachandra Menon (L) Viji Thampi in centre
 In Sundar Daas' film SALLAPAM, Blessey, Biju Varkey and Thomas Sebastian were assisting him.Blessey also had worked  in Lohitha Das' films too.

Thomas Sebastian ( 2 nd from Left)  Sundar Daas and Blessey

Biju Varkey ( L) Blessey (R) with Sundar Daas in Centre

Blessey and Rajesh pillai worked with Rajeev Anchal's English film Beyond the Soul.

Rajesh Pillai second from left  in Rajeev Anchal's film BEYOND THE SOUL
T.S Suresh Babu  was the associate of P.G. Viswambharan in several films. K.K.Haridas, Thevalakkara Chellappan also were P.G.V's assistants.

Akku Akber, Lal Jose, Salim Padiyath and also Dileep (Actor) worked  as assistant Directors with Kamal while Suryan Kunissery was the main Associate. Later on Lal Jose  worked with Director Anil Das in the film Sargavasantham before he became an indepenent director with the film Oru Maravathoor Kanavu.

Lal Jose (Right) with Anil Das ( Centre)
In Director Hariharn's film  ORU VADKKAN VEERA GAADHA, Shrikuttan  was the Associate and Mohandas  was the main assistant.

Shrikuttan (L)  Mohan Das ( extreme right) with Hariharan on the sets of Oru Vadakkan Veera Gaadha

George Kithu, Kareem, Nazeer, Paul Babu, Venu B. Nair all worked in Director Bharathan's films.  Shajoon Karyal, M. Padma Kumar, Sasi Mohan in Director I.V.Sasi's films. 

On the sets of G.S.Vijayan's film SAAPHALYAM - Salim Ahmed on extreme right

 T.K.Rajeev Kumar ( Raghunath Paleri), Salim Ahmed ( National Award winner for Adaminte Makan Abu) , Anil C Menon ( G.S.Vijayan), G. Prem Kumar ( Sasi Kumar), Joseph Vattoly ( Thomas Berly), Johny ( Thulasi Das), M.A.Venu ( Lohitha Das) Sreeprakash ( Lenin Rajendran)  are some of the others who come to my mind.

Although many started their career as assistants  some of them didn't want or they chose to remain as Associate directors for life and are excelling in their field till today.

One interesting fact is that I have been asked to do a film under their direction only by a few like   R.Gopi ( Deivathai Orthu), George Kithu ( Aadharam, Savidham) and Sreeprakash  (Gamanam).

I am very happy to find that many of those who started life as assistant directors have reached the top and had established  their own space in the Malayalam Film Industry!

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