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Episode 82: Director Series – Padmarajan’s Kallan Pavithran with Kani Kusruti

We are back with a new director series! For a long time, we’ve been mulling about a series on acclaimed director Padmarajan, who’s made some of the best Malayalam films of the 1980s and remains an important name in Malayalam cinema of that era.

We asked actress Kani Kusruti, the recent winner of the Kerala State Film Award for Best Actress for her performance in Biriyaani, what is a Malayalam classic that she’d love to revisit and talk about in our podcast. Padmarajan’s Kallan Pavithran (1981), she said. And that was reason enough for us to begin a Director Series on Padmarajan.

Kallan Pavithran starring Nedumudi Venu, Bharath Gopi, Subhashini, Beena and Adoor Bhasi is one of Padmarajan’s early films based on a short story by the director. The film is about a petty thief Pavithram (Venu) and his sudden nouveau riche status that has the town wondering what could be the reason behind his economic prosperity, especially Damayanthi (Beena), Bhama (Subhashini) and Mamachan (Bharath Gopi).

Aditya and Deepauk join Kani Kusruti to talk about Kallan Pavithran, Padmarajan’s craft and politics that evoke widely different reactions and some common themes and stylistic choices in his oeuvre. Listen on.

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Some of Kani Kusruti’s short films linked below:


The Discreet Charm of the Savarnas

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