Padayottam : Biggest of it’s time

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‘Padayottam’ has a great significance in the history of Mollywood as it was the first Indian film to be indigenously shot in the 70 mm film format. This historic movie was directed by Jijo Punnoose and produced by Navodaya Appachan. The movie was a big success at the box office but not a blockbuster as another movie, Aarambham released along with Padayottam also emerged as a winner.

Padayottam had a plethora of stars that included all the leading actors of that time- Prem Nazir, Madhu, Mohanlal, Mammootty, Shankar, Thikkurisi Sukumaran Nair, Poornima Jayaram, Lakshmi, Meena Kumari and Sukumari. Other supporting actors like Pappu, Alummoodan, GK Pillai, Nellikkodu Bhaskaran, Achankunju and N Govindan Kutty were also part of the cast.

Padayottam was shot on a big canvas with a budget of Rs 50 lakhs. N Govindan Kutty, who wrote the movie based on the famous English novel ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ by Alexandre Dumas. Guna Singh composed the music and lyrics were penned down by Kavalam Narayana Panicker. Ramachandra Babu cranked the camera while TR Shekhar handled the edits. The movie was distributed by Navodaya Films and was released on 1 September 1982.

There are many interesting facts related to this film. Mohanlal acted as Mammootty’s son in the movie. Normally Mohanlal used to play the negative roles, but in this film it was kind of a role reversal as Mammootty essayed a negative character. Another interesting fact is that Aarambham, the success of which stopped Padayottam from emerging a blockbuster, is also a Prem Nazeer starrer.

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