Malayalam cinema's Santhosh Pandit is a star in his own way. The actor, who made his debut with "Krishnanum Radhayum" became an internet celebrity thanks to his style of filmmaking.
Santhosh not only directs movies and takes care of production and execution, he also stars in them and sings too! Trolls have been having a go at his YouTube videos for eons now. He appeared on Sreekandan Nair's show on which he was insulted by the anchor. Santhosh received a lot of support from others in the industry and surprisingly, from the public too.
It's a given that Santhosh's films are terrible but there could be more to the man than you suspected. Santhosh recently appeared on a TV show, "Onnum Onnum Moonu", along with anchor Ranjini Haridas, another popular target for trolls.
Santhosh makes a grand entry with the "Neruppu da" number and the reception he gets from the audience is proof of his fame. Santhosh jovially takes a dig at his own movies. He goes on to say that he has a BA in English, an MA in Hindi, a diploma in Civil Engineering. He also had a government job, in the PWD, before he got into films.
There's a humane side to Santhosh too. He revealed on the programme that he'd been paid 26 lakhs to appear on a reality TV show and had later donated 13 lakhs to the adivasi community in Attapadi.
Memes making fun of Ranjini and Santhosh had appeared a while ago, projecting the two of them as a couple. This was apparently done to insult Ranjini. However, both parties seem unfazed. Santhosh said, "I hope Ranjini finds someone she likes and gets married." The two of them mock-flirted through the show, too.
Santhosh proceeded to dance to a song from his upcoming film "Neelima Nallakuttiyaanu" in his trademark style. Ranjini and Rimi, the anchor of the show, danced along sportively too. He also unleashed a string of English words to prove his proficiency in the language, something he does in many of his films.
Santhosh spoke on the nature of trolling on the show: "There's a difference between suggestion and selection. I can suggest to you to wear a more colourful dress but what people do is to select...they ask why do you wear this black dress?" He went on to say that people are constantly defining what others should be doing and that this was the problem.
Santhosh wrote a song on the spot for the two ladies and sang it to tune too.
When Rimi mentioned a particular time when Ranjini had been badly trolled for supporting stray dogs and calling her a "beliaadu" (sacrificial lamb), Santhosh pointed out that it was actually the stray dogs who'd become the sacrificial lambs.
The "Yes" or "No" round of questions saw the two guests give out frank answers too. While Ranjini said "No" for "Are you arrogant?" (a common accusation made against her), Santhosh said that he was. When asked if they drink, Ranjini replied in the affirmative while Santhosh said he never drinks. He said that this is because he does "chinmudhra", the secret behind how he was able to write a song on air. They also answered questions on their love life, with Ranjini saying she's been cheated by a boyfriend once. Ranjini, who is known for her liberal views, said that she doesn't have a problem with live-in relationships, even as Santhosh said he detested the practice.
From why he used to wear a coat all the time to disclosing that he was divorced, Santhosh spoke frankly and openly on this show.