It was with the release of the Malayalam movie, "Premam," that Keralites and Tamilians fell in love with butterflies, red velvet cake, curly-haired girls and thick-bearded guys wearing black shirts and coloured mundu. Even after 365 days of its release, the Alphonse Puthren-directed movie is still fondly recalled by movie-goers for being one of the best romantic family entertainers in Malayalam.
"Premam," which was released on May 29, 2015, has completed one year. The celebrities associated with the film, who were overwhelmed with the response from the audience, became nostalgic on Sunday and took to their social media pages to thank their fans for accepting the movie with their whole heart.
Nivin Pauly, who played the lead role of George in the film, and Sai Pallavi, who shined in the role of Malar miss, shared an unseen picture of them, taken during the shooting of their last romantic scene in "Premam." The adorable photo uploaded on Facebook went viral on social media within minutes of hitting the cyberspace on Sunday. Meanwhile, Nivin has also shared the video of the hit song "Kalippu" from the movie with the caption, "One year of Premam :):):)."
Actor Shabareesh Varma, who had penned the lyrics of eight out of the nine songs in "Premam" also thanked his fans on Sunday. "365 Days of Premam. Thank you all for the love and wishes <3#Premam [sic]," the actor posted on his Facebook page. "ONE Year of Premam. Thank you all #Premam [sic]," actor Krishna Sankar wrote on his social media page.
Why is "Premam" so special?
"Premam" was a fresh experience for many, as the film was released without any trailer or teaser. Initially, two songs, featuring Nivin and Anupama Parameshwaran, were released, and the audience expected "Premam" to be a romantic entertainer based on the characters showed. However, after the movie's release, the audience had a totally different experience and two other heroines — Sai Pallavi and Madonna Sebastian — became the favourite of many. The movie had the career best performances of Vinay Forrt and Soubin Soubin, who were seen as Java professor and PT master, respectively.
The movie had as many as nine songs, and all of them were well accepted by the audience for being fresh tracks matching the situations in the film. The songs of "Premam" made the album get chosen as the Best Malayalam Album by Apple music. The romantic track, "Malare," sung by Vijay Yesudas became the most popular song of the film and was ranked as the top song of the year 2015.
A look back at controversies around "Premam"
"Premam," produced by Anwar Rasheed, also had its share of controversies. The copy of the movie said to be submitted to the censor board with English subtitles was leaked online within days of its release, following which the producer had threatened to resign from the Film Producers Association. Three teenagers were also arrested in connection with the case.
Although the movie was honoured with many awards, the Nivin-starrer failed to bag any State Award. Jury chairman Mohan said that the film doesn't match up to the standards of the State Awards as its making was not perfect. He even criticised Alphonse's lazy attitude towards the making of "Premam." Following this, Alphonse and many celebrities came forward to criticise the jury chairman for his statements.
Box office and reception
However, despite the piracy row, "Premam" achieved tremendous business at the box office in India and abroad, becoming the highest grossing Malayalam movie at the worldwide box office. The blockbuster completed 250 days of its theatrical run in Chennai and was re-released in many theatres in Tamil Nadu owing to the continuous requests of movie-goers.