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Under Arc Light, From Poverty's Darkness

Three decades ago, at the age of 12, Priyanandanan walked 12 kilometres to earn two and a half rupees per day at a ceramic factory, to support his family. Today, he is a top-rung Malayalam film director, with a string of national and international awards under his belt. In his struggle to make a mark for himself, Priyanandanan, unknowingly, created a grassroots movement, which supports low-budget, high-quality cinema in Kerala, in India's southwest. Currently he is in Mumbai to promote his second directorial venture, Pulijanmam (Tiger Life).

Priyanandanan, who hails from Trichur district of Kerala, dropped out of class to take up the job at the factory. He supplemented his mother's income and ensured education for his two younger sisters. Though deprived of a formal education, Priyanandanan exploited the free village library for knowledge and information about the world. As a hobby, he took to theatre and worked in several plays, bagging many awards. "But, I felt theatre was a limited medium with a very limited reach, and I had this urge to do something different," he said. So he turned to film-making.

You can read the rest of Priyanandanan's rise from poverty to award winning film director HERE