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Meet Malayalam TV's tycoon

Last updated on: March 10, 2010 10:45 IST

Meet Malayalam TV's tycoon

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Aswin J Kumar in Kochi

K K Rajeev is the man with the golden touch in the Malayalam television scene.

The director's hits include serials like Swapnam, Avicharitham, Orma, Ammamanasu and Peythozhiyathe. His latest serial Mazhayariyathe narrates the emotional turmoil of a woman married to a schizophreniac, and has already crossed 300 episodes.

The 30-minute serial features Jayakrishnan, Praveena, Sobhamohan and Chandralakshman in the lead roles. It is aired on Surya channel at 7pm.

With his latest serial Mazhayariyathe also turning out to be a hit, the director talks about his success formula in this interview.

You are the only director in the Malayalam television industry whose serials are marketed as K K Rajeev serials. How did you reach this position?

As a director, I have always tried to explore the possibilities of the visual language. I make sure that the narrative and characterisation are not dialogue-oriented. This is the way I leave my signature on my serials.

That was what gave me an identity among the viewers. It was a gradual process. I have never tried to deliberately create an identity. It just happened over the years, and now viewers could easily distinguish my serials.

So, TV channels found it as the best way to market my serials.


Image: A scene from Mazhayariyathe

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'There is no element of fantasy in my serials'

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Most of your serials deal with the intricacies of man-woman relationships. You don't use any gimmicks to achieve the viewer's interest...

My serials progress through the emotions and thoughts of the characters. Situations that arise out of genuine emotions create the real feelings about life.

I never try to fabricate situations. When you have a sound script which tells the story of real human vagaries, there is absolutely no need to create something new.

Transitions should happen by their own. I have always tried to avoid gimmicks in my serials. I believe that in real life, people seldom play gimmicks.

What prompted you to discuss issues like extra marital relationships and premarital pregnancy in your serials?

Morality is something society creates to derive vicarious satisfaction. There is no definite answer to the question as to who defines the codes of morality. Human mind is so delicate and uncontrollable at times. I simply bring to screen the situations that arise out of a moment's flaw. Nobody wants to be an unfaithful partner. Nobody wants to be called a sinner.

It just happens and I mould my characters in such a way that people could easily identify with them. I have come across so many people who are involved in the so called immoral relationships. What I discuss in my serials is reality. There is no element of fantasy in my serials.


Image: A scene from Mazhayariyathe

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'I always try to be honest in my script and to my viewers'

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Having been a successful director for such a long period, do you believe that there is something called a success mantra?

There is nothing called a success mantra. I always try to be honest in my script and to my viewers. If people like my serials, it is because they identify with the characters and situations.

I always try to portray my characters with a conviction that could appeal to a mass audience. Human feelings and emotions are universal. Once you present it in a realistic and credible manner, it is natural that people tend to listen. This is what I have always tried to do in my serials.

Recently you serialised the late writer Padmarajan's famous work Vadakaku oru Hridayam.  How was the experience?

I have always been a great admirer of Padmarajan. Since Vadakaku oru Hridayam had already been made into a film, it was a real challenge to bring it to the mini screen.

The script of the serial was written by Padmarajan's son, Ananthapadmanaphan. There were a lot of characters and aspects in the novel, which went unnoticed in the film version. I wanted to focus on these characters in the serial. I consider it as one of my greatest fortunes to have been able to recreate the work of a legend like Padmarajan.


Image: A scene from Mazhayariyathe

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'I will have Jayasuriya in my debut film'

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Do you think there exists a struggle for survival for serials now that reality shows are the flavour of the season?

I have never felt like that. Fiction has got its own appeal. There is a child inside every human being who has a heart for stories. Serials turn flops because they fail to be genuine. You will not get viewers for something that is made so incredibly sloppy. It is then serials are decried as tear jerkers.

Even the reality that reality shows boast about is just an illusion. These shows also make people cry. The drama you see in the elimination rounds could beat what is there in serials. Reality shows can never pose a threat to serials as long as serials appeal to the people with credible plots and realistic portrayal of characters.

It has been a long and enviable tryst with the small screen for you. What about the big leap to the big screen?

Discussions are already on for my film debut. It will have Jayasuriya in the lead role. I am waiting for the script to be finished.

Image: A scene from Mazhayariyathe

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