National Film Awards: Special mention for Manorama's digital book on MT

The late Anoop Ramakrishnan; MT's book
The late Anoop Ramakrishnan; MT's book

Kottayam: A digital book brought out by Manorama Books has been accorded a Special Mention for the Best Book on Cinema at the 68th National Film Awards announced on Friday. The work "MT— Anubhavaganlude Pusthakam" which gives a comprehensive and meaningful account of the colourful literary life of writer MT Vasudevan Nair was designed by late Anoop Ramakrishnan who was the design coordinator of Malayala Manorama.

Anoop, who had shared a perfect mental rapport with MT, designed the book in digital format. It captures MT's literary career that spans over more than five decades.

Odia book ‘Kali Paine Kalira Cinema’ also won special mention. 

"MT - Anubhavaganlude Pusthakam" can be undoubtedly regarded as the first multimedia book in Malayalam. It is an abridged version of the DVD collection "MT-yude Lokangal", which was earlier brought out by "Malayala Manorama" in a book format.

Anoop Ramakrishan, of "Sarovaram" at Pavangad in Kozhikode, passed away on December 7, 2021 at the age of 52. He was the son of Puthenveettil Ramakrishnan and Meera Anoop.

Innovative work

The book is noted for its innovative efforts. Novelty can be seen everywhere, right from the bold decision to not to use the picture of MT Vasudevan Nair, a person who has touched the pinnacles of fame, as the frontispiece of the cover page. A portrait that fits as a background for "Kadavu" movie written and directed by MT, found expression in the cover page. Striking enough, the design-wise focus in the cover page was on the two alphabets in the epithet, MT. Such bold and path-breaking initiatives have added a special beauty to the multi-media book.

The content of the book is divided into three parts. The unique multimedia experience created out of combining sound and visuals along with the beauty of the written part gives you a whole new feel.

The first part contains the excerpts of interviews held by famous personalities with MT on different occasions. In this segment, around 271 persons, including personalities from cinema and literature fields, and his close friends and relatives, share their profound personal memories about this literary giant. The recollection of special moments with MT by people from various walks of life such as Sukumar Azhikode, ONV Kurup, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Mammotty, Mohanlal and Mehaboob Koodallur brings to the fore the creative and personal realms of MT's eventful life. The speciality in this segment is the provision given to the readers to hear these personalities, using a QR code. 

The second segment titled "Dialogues" covers the written format of the interviews conducted by three personalities: Mammootty, who made many MT characters memorable on the silver screen; Artist Namboothiri, who sketched many a portraits in periodicals and magazines covering many realistic situations from the novels and stories of MT; and Ashwathi Sreekant, MT's younger daughter and dancer. All the three interviews stand out as special as each of them brings out the best from the MT, who is otherwise an introvert. The informal nature of the interactions makes it all the more special. The relevant pictures are also given along with the written text. The links with relevant QR codes for viewing the interviews are also given.

The third segment contains the scripts of five short films made on MT's life. The short film "Oru Kadavinte Katha" and "Nirmalyam - Vishakkatha Daivathinu" depict the stories behind the making of MT's movies "Kadavu" and "Nirmalyam" respectively. The short film "Appunniyude Yathrakal" deals with MT's much-celebrated novel "Nalukettu". "Vanaprastha Vazhikal" delves deep into MT's spiritual voyage to Kudajadri which resulted in the writing of the story "Vanaprastham". "Enganumundo Kandu?" is a short film which looks back on the history of "Pariyanam", a movie directed by Hariharan based on MT's script.

These scripts for the short films, which were finished after great research work, are noted for its authenticity and feel. Many personalities such as Kamal Haasan and Ajitha were involved in the shaping of these scripts. Apart from reading these scripts and enjoying the pictures given along with it, a reader can view live each of these short films in their mobile phone, tablet or laptop after scanning the respective QR code.

The book, "MT - Anubhavangalude Pusthakam", has the unique distinction of being appealing to all Malayalees who love MT and all those who love Malayalam even if they are not able to follow the language.

"MT - Anubhavangalude Pusthakam"

Editing & Designing: Anoop Ramakrishnan

Publishers: Manorama Books

Pages: 530, Price: Rs 780.    

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