Lal Jose remembers Noushad as a close friend who never complained

Lal Jose, poster of his movie Spanish Masala and Noushad

‘Big Chef’ Noushad had not only made a mark of his own in the culinary arts but in the cinema industry too by bankrolling some super hit movies. The first movie that the late chef had produced was the critically acclaimed Kazhcha which was directed by Blessy. Interestingly, the award winning director and the culinary expert had been school and college mates. Noushad then went on to produce movies like Chattambinadu, Best Actor and Lion. He had produced around six movies for his banner of Big Screen Productions. Spanish Masala directed by Lal Jose which told the exciting story of a chef too was produced by Noushad. This film was a hit which added an impetus to Noushad’s career as a film producer. 

Lal Jose, who is deeply pained by the unexpected demise of Noushad, says that he has lost a good friend. More than just the professional relationship of a director and a producer, the duo had shared a unique connection. 

“It was through script writer Benny P Nayarambalam that I came into Spanish Masala. I listened to the story of Spanish Masala at Benny’s flat in Ernakulam. It was a big budget movie and we wanted a producer who was ready to take such a risk. Then, Benny told me about Noushad. He had heard the script and was interested in producing it. I met Noushad and spoke about the movie. The project was on! I, Benny and Noushad’s friend and line producer Sajith flew to Spain to see the location. A few days after we returned, some of my friends in the film industry told me that Noushad was in a financial crisis as he was trying to float a business project. I spoke about this with Benny. There would be expenses once the filming began. We required lots of money as we would be shooting in a foreign country,” recalls Lal Jose.

Lal Jose remembers Noushad as a proud person who did not wish to back out of his promise. Both the director and the writer spoke to Noushad and tried to reassure him that pride had no place in cinema and that it was alright if the latter wished to withdraw from the project. “I advised him not to commit such a big project if he was in a financial crisis. However, he denied it and said that people were saying baseless things. He proved that by arriving in a brand new Benz car for the puja ceremony of the movie,” says Lal Jose.

Strong bond

Lal Jose says that there had been a financial crunch towards the end of the shooting schedule. The crew couldn’t film many portions as they had wanted. Moreover, the film didn’t collect much at the box office either. Usually, there would be fall outs during situations like these. The film maker recalls that Noushad didn’t say anything untoward even when he chided him for taking an unnecessary risk. 

Great friend

“When I invited him for the housewarming of my new flat in Ernakulam, Noushad asked me, “How many guests would be there? I am supplying biryani for them.” Noushad was a unique personality who took on life with happiness and joy. He behaved the same with everyone. Noushad had always tried to make me comfortable after the movie. He would always try to convince me that the movie didn’t cause him too much trouble. I had played a minor role in Best Actor that he had produced. We had decided to do a small movie together. But, Noushad left us without waiting for that,” concludes Lal Jose. 

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