KOCHI: When the Sathyan Anthikad movie ‘Ponmuttayidunna Tharavu’ (The Duck that lays Golden Eggs) debuted on the silver screen in 1988, it gave Malayalam movie-goers another reason to laugh. The simple, yet the endearing movie was rich in wit, satire, and concluded with a lesson. Thirty decades later, the YouTube channel ‘Ponmutta’ (Golden egg) has found favour amongst the Malayali audience for its light-humour filled content, not to mention relatable.
“The name of the channel was definitely inspired from the movie,” says Liju Thomas, founder. “There were channels like Filtercopy, Timeliners which provided funny, relatable content. Other than ‘Karikku’ (another Malayalam YouTube channel), we did not have any Malayalam channel with quality content. This triggered the want to produce content solely for the Kerala audience. The title ‘Ponmutta’ also creates a certain kind of connect. My friend Gokul designed the logo for the same. And the tagline, ‘Golden Bird for Fun’ says it all,” Liju continues.
Having broken into the internet in November 2018, the channel already has 33,206 subscribers with videos such as ‘Malayali Da’ which portrays the quintessential habits of a Malayali, and ‘Parayan Aagrahichathum Paranjathum’ (What I wanted to say versus what I said). “We release a video every two weeks. That’s how long it takes to reach the audience. Currently, we have released 10 videos and the response amassed has been great,” Liju says.
How difficult is it to create exciting, engaging, and relatable content? “We derive inspiration from our daily lives. The actors Shyam, Jijo, Vishnu, Sooraj, Seethalakshmi Hariharan, Greeshma, Pooja and I brainstorm together for the script. We try perfecting every section and showcasing a Malayali at his best- there should not be any glitch in the video,” says the Kasargod native who resides in Kochi.
Liju dreams big. He knows web series are the next big thing. “Our web series titled ‘Adventures of Unnivasco’ will release soon. The channel aims to reach one million subscribers by the end of this year,” he says.Currently, working with a production house, Liju is realising his filmmaking dreams through ‘Ponmutta’. “I studied film direction and TV production, after which I had a brief stint in Kairali TV,” Liju says.
One better not count their chickens before they hatch. Albeit, in a strange occurrence of events, Liju did and got a golden bird.