What ails Malayalam cinema these days has perhaps come to light mostly with the Thilakan issue. I speak from a movie lover’s perspective and without too much knowledge of factions, Federations, Associations etc. that seem to have cropped up in the industry.

To name the ones I know – AMMA, FEFKA, MACTA and the numerous Superstar Fans Associations all seem to be big players in the whole issue. If you try to read up about this in the media you realise there is not much of reporting going on about this problem.

A few questions: Why is the media seeming tied down? Why doesn’t someone report who is doing the arm-twisting here? Why are great actors like Thilakan having to walk out of good roles because of AMMA? Why should an Association decide who acts in what movie and why?

Movie artist associations are, I presume, formed to help co-actors in the field… so why are they the  deciders in an actor’s call-sheet? Why is an association seemingly punishing members and interfering in the business of filmmaking? Why did Thilakan now get a compensation?

A request to the film fraternity, fans and people like you and me who lament the death of great Malayalam cinema – let’s all examine why great movies are not being made.

Also a special request to our superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal, both already producers as well,  to produce all kinds of films and help new talent come in.

Finally to Malayalis everywhere:

What has happened to our sensibilities as film lovers why are we lapping up slap-stick comedies and mannerisms one after the other for years now?

Why don’t we go out to watch smaller films and encourage new talent?

Why are, we, as fans and Fans Associations hampering good cinema?

What can we do? Let’s free art, let’s dismantle power-wielding Associations, Federations and Fans Associations and let’s not patronise movies made to make money alone. Stop laughing at oft-repeated comedy genre movies that seems to be ruling the roost.

I hope I have ruffled a few feathers in case this post gets picked up by the film world and please know that I’m only voicing the angst of a large, a very large number of Malayalis everywhere who took pride in our films.

This post is nothing but a humble protest …but make no mistake, a protest indeed this is.

Conclusion: Let me end by hoping all our Malayalam actors, who by the way are so talented that you can’t actually think of a bad actor in Kerala films, will see that such Associations and Federations are only straight-jacketing art.

And whenever art is not free it is freedom that is being curtailed and this should never happen! Save Malayalam cinema, free art, and foster talent should be our only mantra.

41 Responses

  1. The scuffle between human beings for resources are natural, the intensity of that will get more intense when there is large amount of resource(money) involved. This is a never ending story and one day this may stop, The day when there is only one man remains and he don’t have anybody to compete with for the available resource.

  2. The scuffle between human beings for resources are natural, the intensity of that will get more intense when there is large amount of resource(money) involved. This is a never ending story and one day this may stop, The day when there is only one man remains and he don’t have anybody to compete with for the available resource.

  3. The scuffle between human beings for resources are natural, the intensity of that will get more intense when there is large amount of resource(money) involved. This is a never ending story and one day this may stop, The day when there is only one man remains and he don’t have anybody to compete with for the available resource.

  4. The scuffle between human beings for resources are natural, the intensity of that will get more intense when there is large amount of resource(money) involved. This is a never ending story and one day this may stop, The day when there is only one man remains and he don’t have anybody to compete with for the available resource.

  5. Shyama,

    You wrote

    Also a special request to our superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal, both already producers as well, to produce all kinds of films and help new talent come in.

    Tell me one good reason why they should do it? What is in it for them? Why would they want to promote people who would upset their position?

    1. VC, you ask for a reason why superstars should produce films to promote new talent – to breathe new life into the very industry that gave them all the fame and riches. For the sake of art, story-telling, film-making and all things creative. The world over stars are doing it and even making money. And finally, why not? Thanks for the comment 🙂

  6. Shyama,

    You wrote

    Also a special request to our superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal, both already producers as well, to produce all kinds of films and help new talent come in.

    Tell me one good reason why they should do it? What is in it for them? Why would they want to promote people who would upset their position?

    1. VC, you ask for a reason why superstars should produce films to promote new talent – to breathe new life into the very industry that gave them all the fame and riches. For the sake of art, story-telling, film-making and all things creative. The world over stars are doing it and even making money. And finally, why not? Thanks for the comment 🙂

  7. Shyama,

    You wrote

    Also a special request to our superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal, both already producers as well, to produce all kinds of films and help new talent come in.

    Tell me one good reason why they should do it? What is in it for them? Why would they want to promote people who would upset their position?

    1. VC, you ask for a reason why superstars should produce films to promote new talent – to breathe new life into the very industry that gave them all the fame and riches. For the sake of art, story-telling, film-making and all things creative. The world over stars are doing it and even making money. And finally, why not? Thanks for the comment 🙂

  8. Shyama,

    You wrote

    Also a special request to our superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal, both already producers as well, to produce all kinds of films and help new talent come in.

    Tell me one good reason why they should do it? What is in it for them? Why would they want to promote people who would upset their position?

    1. VC, you ask for a reason why superstars should produce films to promote new talent – to breathe new life into the very industry that gave them all the fame and riches. For the sake of art, story-telling, film-making and all things creative. The world over stars are doing it and even making money. And finally, why not? Thanks for the comment 🙂

  9. Shyama,

    You are asking them to provide selfless service and promote youngsters like how it happens in Tamil and Telugu movies. If you notice, superstars there act in one movie/year whereas ours act in six movies. So they want to continue that way and there is no incentive for them to promote youngsters. You are just making a wish.

    art, story telling, creative — look at Bhramaram, Pazhassi Raja, Akashagopuram — still they are amazingly creative.

    Why not is a empty question. Just because someone is doing it does not mean Mammotty and Mohanlal should do it. They still get the best directors and best writers to work for them. So again you need to think of their incentive. Betterment of other actors life is not in their agenda. Their agenda is doing better films themselves.

    1. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold! By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer and even an actor a chance instead of hiding behind AMMA FEFKA etc. They HAVE to do something constructive with their power. Every day Bollywood and Tollywood are all coming with new things, and if we don’t do something we are going to be soon forgotten!

  10. Shyama,

    You are asking them to provide selfless service and promote youngsters like how it happens in Tamil and Telugu movies. If you notice, superstars there act in one movie/year whereas ours act in six movies. So they want to continue that way and there is no incentive for them to promote youngsters. You are just making a wish.

    art, story telling, creative — look at Bhramaram, Pazhassi Raja, Akashagopuram — still they are amazingly creative.

    Why not is a empty question. Just because someone is doing it does not mean Mammotty and Mohanlal should do it. They still get the best directors and best writers to work for them. So again you need to think of their incentive. Betterment of other actors life is not in their agenda. Their agenda is doing better films themselves.

    1. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold! By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer and even an actor a chance instead of hiding behind AMMA FEFKA etc. They HAVE to do something constructive with their power. Every day Bollywood and Tollywood are all coming with new things, and if we don’t do something we are going to be soon forgotten!

  11. Shyama,

    You are asking them to provide selfless service and promote youngsters like how it happens in Tamil and Telugu movies. If you notice, superstars there act in one movie/year whereas ours act in six movies. So they want to continue that way and there is no incentive for them to promote youngsters. You are just making a wish.

    art, story telling, creative — look at Bhramaram, Pazhassi Raja, Akashagopuram — still they are amazingly creative.

    Why not is a empty question. Just because someone is doing it does not mean Mammotty and Mohanlal should do it. They still get the best directors and best writers to work for them. So again you need to think of their incentive. Betterment of other actors life is not in their agenda. Their agenda is doing better films themselves.

    1. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold! By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer and even an actor a chance instead of hiding behind AMMA FEFKA etc. They HAVE to do something constructive with their power. Every day Bollywood and Tollywood are all coming with new things, and if we don’t do something we are going to be soon forgotten!

  12. Shyama,

    You are asking them to provide selfless service and promote youngsters like how it happens in Tamil and Telugu movies. If you notice, superstars there act in one movie/year whereas ours act in six movies. So they want to continue that way and there is no incentive for them to promote youngsters. You are just making a wish.

    art, story telling, creative — look at Bhramaram, Pazhassi Raja, Akashagopuram — still they are amazingly creative.

    Why not is a empty question. Just because someone is doing it does not mean Mammotty and Mohanlal should do it. They still get the best directors and best writers to work for them. So again you need to think of their incentive. Betterment of other actors life is not in their agenda. Their agenda is doing better films themselves.

    1. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold! By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer and even an actor a chance instead of hiding behind AMMA FEFKA etc. They HAVE to do something constructive with their power. Every day Bollywood and Tollywood are all coming with new things, and if we don’t do something we are going to be soon forgotten!

  13. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold!

    The whole point of AMMA is to bat for the superstars. The whole Malayalam Cinema revolves around them. Also due to them thousands of people are employed. It is a vicious cycle.

    By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer

    I think this is a baseless argument. Do you know how many new writers and directors Mammotty alone has introduced. Just read this from the director of Passenger, Ranjith Shankar

    http://ranjithsankar.wordpress.com/2010/01/27/mammukka-and-passenger/

    Why talk about Bollywood and Tollywood – don’t we have Paleri Manikyam, Kerala Cafe, Kaiyoppu, Twenty 20. Wont you call them experiments which you won’t see elsewhere? Look at a movie called Nottam which had amazing performance by Nedumudi Venu or Kanne Madanguka which had another amazing performance by Navya Nair.

    People need to vote with their wallets to change behavior; support good movies. Complaining is cathartic, but won’t solve the problem. So instead of writing reviews of block buster movies, you can help this cause by writing reviews of other good films.

    1. I do agree we need to go watch small movies and write reviews etc and I did talk about it in my post. So are you for organisations like AMMA? Am I in the wrong to think such organisations are holding good cinema on hold? Why am I unable to connect with the kind of movies being made now? So is there a solution? What about Thilakan? You do seem very pro the superstars and don’t get me wrong, I do like them a lot myself. However, I feel they need to do more to help Malayalam cinema even if it means cutting back on their clout. Thanks for enlightening me, have to admit its great to hear from somebody who has all the inside info on our cinema.

  14. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold!

    The whole point of AMMA is to bat for the superstars. The whole Malayalam Cinema revolves around them. Also due to them thousands of people are employed. It is a vicious cycle.

    By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer

    I think this is a baseless argument. Do you know how many new writers and directors Mammotty alone has introduced. Just read this from the director of Passenger, Ranjith Shankar

    http://ranjithsankar.wordpress.com/2010/01/27/mammukka-and-passenger/

    Why talk about Bollywood and Tollywood – don’t we have Paleri Manikyam, Kerala Cafe, Kaiyoppu, Twenty 20. Wont you call them experiments which you won’t see elsewhere? Look at a movie called Nottam which had amazing performance by Nedumudi Venu or Kanne Madanguka which had another amazing performance by Navya Nair.

    People need to vote with their wallets to change behavior; support good movies. Complaining is cathartic, but won’t solve the problem. So instead of writing reviews of block buster movies, you can help this cause by writing reviews of other good films.

    1. I do agree we need to go watch small movies and write reviews etc and I did talk about it in my post. So are you for organisations like AMMA? Am I in the wrong to think such organisations are holding good cinema on hold? Why am I unable to connect with the kind of movies being made now? So is there a solution? What about Thilakan? You do seem very pro the superstars and don’t get me wrong, I do like them a lot myself. However, I feel they need to do more to help Malayalam cinema even if it means cutting back on their clout. Thanks for enlightening me, have to admit its great to hear from somebody who has all the inside info on our cinema.

  15. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold!

    The whole point of AMMA is to bat for the superstars. The whole Malayalam Cinema revolves around them. Also due to them thousands of people are employed. It is a vicious cycle.

    By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer

    I think this is a baseless argument. Do you know how many new writers and directors Mammotty alone has introduced. Just read this from the director of Passenger, Ranjith Shankar

    http://ranjithsankar.wordpress.com/2010/01/27/mammukka-and-passenger/

    Why talk about Bollywood and Tollywood – don’t we have Paleri Manikyam, Kerala Cafe, Kaiyoppu, Twenty 20. Wont you call them experiments which you won’t see elsewhere? Look at a movie called Nottam which had amazing performance by Nedumudi Venu or Kanne Madanguka which had another amazing performance by Navya Nair.

    People need to vote with their wallets to change behavior; support good movies. Complaining is cathartic, but won’t solve the problem. So instead of writing reviews of block buster movies, you can help this cause by writing reviews of other good films.

    1. I do agree we need to go watch small movies and write reviews etc and I did talk about it in my post. So are you for organisations like AMMA? Am I in the wrong to think such organisations are holding good cinema on hold? Why am I unable to connect with the kind of movies being made now? So is there a solution? What about Thilakan? You do seem very pro the superstars and don’t get me wrong, I do like them a lot myself. However, I feel they need to do more to help Malayalam cinema even if it means cutting back on their clout. Thanks for enlightening me, have to admit its great to hear from somebody who has all the inside info on our cinema.

  16. If the power is all with them and the Superstars are only interested in bettering themselves – let’s leave all hopes for a golden age for Malayalam cinema on hold!

    The whole point of AMMA is to bat for the superstars. The whole Malayalam Cinema revolves around them. Also due to them thousands of people are employed. It is a vicious cycle.

    By the way, being selfless may even pay off big time – it could probably be a better time for them – having the ability to get better characters etched by giving some new writer

    I think this is a baseless argument. Do you know how many new writers and directors Mammotty alone has introduced. Just read this from the director of Passenger, Ranjith Shankar

    http://ranjithsankar.wordpress.com/2010/01/27/mammukka-and-passenger/

    Why talk about Bollywood and Tollywood – don’t we have Paleri Manikyam, Kerala Cafe, Kaiyoppu, Twenty 20. Wont you call them experiments which you won’t see elsewhere? Look at a movie called Nottam which had amazing performance by Nedumudi Venu or Kanne Madanguka which had another amazing performance by Navya Nair.

    People need to vote with their wallets to change behavior; support good movies. Complaining is cathartic, but won’t solve the problem. So instead of writing reviews of block buster movies, you can help this cause by writing reviews of other good films.

    1. I do agree we need to go watch small movies and write reviews etc and I did talk about it in my post. So are you for organisations like AMMA? Am I in the wrong to think such organisations are holding good cinema on hold? Why am I unable to connect with the kind of movies being made now? So is there a solution? What about Thilakan? You do seem very pro the superstars and don’t get me wrong, I do like them a lot myself. However, I feel they need to do more to help Malayalam cinema even if it means cutting back on their clout. Thanks for enlightening me, have to admit its great to hear from somebody who has all the inside info on our cinema.

  17. Ego Ego Ego, One who don’t have this thing please raise your hands. Guys, ego is the main driving force behind every successful man or women. It is proud, self confidence that makes them going in their streak of success.

    Look at a green leaf and see its pride and how it is exposing itself to the sunlight but one day it starts fading and finally it will fall and it will be replaced by a all new green leaf.

    The cycle of life will goes on, he he he heee

  18. Ego Ego Ego, One who don’t have this thing please raise your hands. Guys, ego is the main driving force behind every successful man or women. It is proud, self confidence that makes them going in their streak of success.

    Look at a green leaf and see its pride and how it is exposing itself to the sunlight but one day it starts fading and finally it will fall and it will be replaced by a all new green leaf.

    The cycle of life will goes on, he he he heee

  19. Ego Ego Ego, One who don’t have this thing please raise your hands. Guys, ego is the main driving force behind every successful man or women. It is proud, self confidence that makes them going in their streak of success.

    Look at a green leaf and see its pride and how it is exposing itself to the sunlight but one day it starts fading and finally it will fall and it will be replaced by a all new green leaf.

    The cycle of life will goes on, he he he heee

  20. Ego Ego Ego, One who don’t have this thing please raise your hands. Guys, ego is the main driving force behind every successful man or women. It is proud, self confidence that makes them going in their streak of success.

    Look at a green leaf and see its pride and how it is exposing itself to the sunlight but one day it starts fading and finally it will fall and it will be replaced by a all new green leaf.

    The cycle of life will goes on, he he he heee

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