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Bhadran Mattel is an Indian filmmaker and writer, whose career spans more than 40 years. Bhadran's body of work addresses such themes as victimization of ill-mannered parenting, concepts of psychological trauma's and redemption, objectification of fatherhood, child hood distresses, intense metaphorical placements of matter and animals, Biblical inspired backdrops and autocrat Christian culture in typical parts of Kerala. Many of his films are also known for its extremely deep but larger than life emotional sequences.
Among the very few film makers who ruled Malayalam film industry through '80s and '90s, he is widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential filmmaker to introduce thug life glorification of Malayalam superstars on screen, which went on to become the most popular concept of a typical mass film among Kerala film fans even these days. In 1986 he won the Film fare Best Director award for Poomukhappadiyil Ninneyum Kaathu and repeated the feat of achievements again with two more Filmfares in the Best Director category through Iyer the Great and Spadikam in 1990 and 1995.
He has directed works includes such as the ruffian film Spadikam (1995), the psychic-precognition thriller Iyer the Great (1990), an investigative school back dropped Olympiyan Anthony Adam (1999), the parenthood of an obese caretaker Uncle Bun (1991), a psychic family drama Poomukhappadiyil Ninneyum Kaathu (1986), the musical Idanazhiyil Oru Kaalocha (1987), the mighty land tyrant Udayon (2005), Indian political thriller Yuvathurkikl (1996) and on. Most of his films were collaborated on with actors Mohanlal and Mammootty. Having directed Mohanlal in seven films and Mammootty in four films, Bhadran's associations with them have resulted in Award nominations for both as well as them winning prestigious awards.
Bhadran's career has spanned over 32 years. He is formally trained in music and won many accolades during his academic years for acting in plays and writing. He always aspired to become a great film director.
In 1986 he won the Filmfare Best Director award for Poomukhappadiyil Ninneyum Kaathu and repeated the feat of achievements again with two more Film fares in the Best Director category through Iyer the Great and Spadikam in 1990 and 1995.
He has directed works includes such as the ruffian film Spadikam (1995), the psychic-precognition thriller Iyer the Great (1990), an investigative school back dropped Olympiyan Anthony Adam (1999), the parenthood of an obese caretaker Uncle Bun (1991), a psychic family drama Poomukhappadiyil Ninneyum Kaathu (1986), the musical Idanazhiyil Oru Kaalocha (1987), the mighty land tyrant Udayon (2005), Indian political thriller Yuvathurki (1996) and on.
Most of his films were collaborated on with actors Mohanlal and Mammootty. Having directed Mohanlal in seven films and Mammotty in four films, Bhadran's associations with them have resulted in Award nominations for both as well as them winning prestigious awards.
His struggle to gain a foothold in the fiercely competitive industry bore fruit when he got the opportunity to work as the 8th Assistant Director for Hariharan on Rajahamsam under the banner of Supriya, the production house. Beginning with that film, he assisted Hariharan in 14 films, progressing from an apprentice to an associate director.
The first film under his direction was released in 1982. Ente Mohangal Poovaninju starring Shankar, Mohanlal, Menaka, Kala Ranjini received immense critical appreciation and was popular with audiences. Bhadran's films drew inspiration from the lives of common people, blended with creative surrealism. Changatham (Malayalam) was released in 1983 starring Mammootty, Mohanlal, Madhavi was released and made ripples on the mainstream cinematic landscape. Bhadran focussed on making 2–3 quality films per year.
In his early years, when his directorial career was nascent, he acted in his self-directed venture Prem Nazirine Kanmanilla, released in 1983.
Spadikam (Prism), released in 1995, was an action drama film written and directed by Bhadran. The title was chosen to depict the flickering nature of people who keep changing and adapting themselves to exploit situations to suit their needs. The prism splits the white light into a spectrum of seven vibrant colours.
Similarly, the star of the film Thomas Chacko, a village rowdy played by Mohanlal, transforms himself into various characters to face different situations. The film was one of the highest-grossing film in Kerala in 1993 and collected around INR 8 Crores. It was also the longest running film of 1993 and ran for 225 days, winning the Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor and Filmfare Award for Best Actor. Spadikam, which depicts parents standing in the way of their children's dreams, was Bhadran's most successful commercial film apart from being one of the highest-grossing films of Malayalam cinema, gaining cult status in Kerala's film culture.
The theme of Idanazhiyil Oru Kaalocha was a critical failure. The plot is that a teenage boy falls in love with an elderly lady, played by Vineeth and Karthika respectively. Iyer the Great, starring Mamootty and addressing a train accident in Peruman made it a landmark film in the Malayalam film scene.
Bhadran was also in the news in 2019 when a director called Biju announced that he will make the second part of the super hit film from Bhadran called Spadikam. Bhadran opposed it and the project had to be shelved.
|1982||Ente Mohangal Poovaninju||Shankar, Mohanlal, Menaka, Kalaranjini|
|1983||Changatham||Mammootty, Mohanlal, Madhavi|
|1984||Aattuvanchi Ulanjappol||Madhu, Mammooty, Ratheesh|
|1986||Poomukhappadiyil Ninneyum Kaathu||Mammootty, Mohanlal, Rahman, Srividya|
|1987||Idanazhiyil Oru Kaalocha||Vineeth, Karthika|
|1990||Iyer the Great||Mammootty, Geetha, Ratheesh, Sobhana|
|1991||Uncle Bun||Mohanlal, Khushboo, Charmila|
|1995||Spadikam||Mohanlal, Urvashi, Thilakan|
|1996||Yuvathurki||Suresh Gopi, Vijayashanti, Geetha, Ratheesh|
|1999||Olympiyan Anthony Adam||Mohanlal, Meena|
|2003||Vellithira||Prithviraj, Navya Nair, Kalabhavan Mani|
|2005||Udayon||Mohanlal, Jagathy Sreekumar, Laya, Manoj K. Jayan|
|2021||Untitled Mohanlal Road Movie||Mohanlal Ramya Krishnan Sarath Kumar Vijay Babu|
- "Director Bhadran: Spadikam is a film that is inspired by my own life - Times of India".
- "Joothan: Mohanlal announces director Bhadran's comeback film". 15 March 2019.
- "Will oppose 'Spadikam 2' release, says Bhadran".
- "After 14 yrs, filmmaker Bhadran returns with 'Joothan' starring Soubin, Rima, Joju". 17 March 2019.