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Make-up, his obsession

FOR HIM, home is where the art is. Literally. Kerala is where he belongs and it's here that he stays, right now in Kochi. Years back, he went to Chennai to make his mark in music. All he had with him was a letter for Dr.K.J.Yesudas from his father who was once associated with the legendary singer. He never became a big name in the music scene. But he's not complaining. In fact he `made up' his career in the movie world.

The success story of Pattanam Rasheed, nationally acclaimed make-up artist began thus.

Why make-up? Prod him and he grins, "Don't know why. But since the time when I began associating with amateur drama troupes, I was fascinated by this art. And the interest keeps increasing". He radiates certain calmness even when he is busy creating that `perfect look'.

After reaching Chennai he assisted several make-up artistes.The D-day came when he became a full-fledged make-up artiste in the movie `Onnu muthal poojyam vare'. Several films later, does he feel `Ponthanmada' is his best? "Let's put it this way. Ponthanmada got me great recognition".

Indeed the film fetched him several laurels. He is now on the set of a comedy film titled `Bamboo Boys'.

He feels his works in Rajeev Anchal's `Guru', T.V.Chandran's `Susanna' and `Danny' and more recently, director Sasi Sankar's `Kunjikkoonan' top his personal preferences.

He was also associated with Ismail Merchant's `Cotton Mary', where he had the opportunity to work along with some of the notable names in Hollywood.

How different was the Hollywood experience from desi filmmaking?

"They take the art of make-up much more seriously than us. They also differ from us in the way of applying the materials, the quality of things used and also on how it is applied".

He believes that it was a tremendous experience working with the legendary make-up maestro Barry Cooper for the Kamal Haasan starrer Chachi 420.

And he asserts that Malayalam films have a rich history in this field. He cites the make-up of actor Kottarakkara Sreedharan Nair in the oldie, `Aranazhika Neram' as an example of fine make-up in Malayalam movies even during the old days.

Has the so-called crisis in the Malayalam film industry made producers cut down on the costs of make-up?

"Not much. We do not make films on the scale of, say, the Hindi block busters, `Devdas' or `Asoka', usually. So the question of compromising in such things does not arise."

Which Malayalam actor is the best made-up star?

He laughs diplomatically and says all of them are quite good.

Pattanam Rasheed_ the former part of his name comes from the family_ feels that he is still in the process of learning. He is in constant touch with the make up artistes in Hollywood. He always makes it a point to learn about the developments in his art experimented in films the world over. Technology is the zing thing in Hollywood and we are years behind on that front, he says.

Rasheed is of the opinion that hair styling and dress are important in make-up. The body language of the actor is another deciding factor. These days, with the songs and trailers being aired in various channels all the time, the filmmakers are very particular about giving the perfect look for the characters.

`Kunjikkoonan', the new movie in which Dileep plays a double role, one of which is of a hunch back, is already getting him rave reviews.

The story goes that the fans assembled in a location for the film didn't care for the hunchback in their midst and went on waiting for Dileep.

The man who gave that make-up for Dileep, Pattanam Rasheed, is obviously thrilled to hear the story.

VIJAY GEORGE

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