KERALA

Mammon the villain, says Srinivasan

Greed for money among film stars and lack of producers with creativity seem to be driving Malayalam cinema backwards, Srinivasan, actor, has said.

At a press conference after a preview of his latest movie, Atmakatha (slated for release on August 20), at the Ernakulam Press Club on Wednesday, the actor said the stars whose eight films bombed at the box office in a row thought that their ninth or tenth movie would click. If the ninth or tenth make it at the box office, they continued to retain their stardom, everyone easily forgetting the failure of the eight.

Pointing out that a section of the producers seemed to be chasing stars having commercial value, the actor said the satellite rights for movies having stars were sold at huge rates.

Recalling that the Malayalam film industry had renowned producers such as T. E. Vasudevan, M. O. Joseph, and Hari Pothan who had the courage to make movies that did not take the beaten path, Mr. Srinivasan said there were fewer such producers these days. He said there was no point competing with “masala” movies made in Tamil and Telugu. Malayalam films had earned repute not for big budgets but for aesthetic values.

Mr. Srinivasan denied allegations made by Thilakan, actor, that there was a ban on him. Santhosh Pavithram and Safeer Sait, producers of Atmakatha, alleged that a section of theatre owners had refused to screen their movie.

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