Merryland Studio

Merryland Studio is an Indian film studio based in Trivandrum, Kerala. It was the second film studio in Kerala, established in 1950 by former Trivandrum mayor and businessman P. Subramaniam. He produced 70 films, 59 of them directed by himself. He was active between 1951 – 1979. The studio's home productions were made under the company Neela Productions. Merryland Studio was famous for their professional rivalry with Kunchacko's Udaya Studio, the first film studio in Kerala. They resumed film production under the newly christened company Merryland Cinemas, debuting with Hridayam (2022).

Merryland Studio
TypePrivate
IndustryMotion pictures
Founded1951; 72 years ago (1951)
FounderP. Subramaniam
Headquarters,
Kerala, India
Area served
Kerala
ProductsFilms
Services
SubsidiariesNeela Productions (defunct)
Merryland Cinemas (since 2022)

HistoryEdit

When cinema became a passion, Subramaniam decided to buy some property to begin a studio complex. He bought land at Nemom, Thiruvananthapuram, and founded the studio in 1951, with two floors and a single camera. The first production, Atma Sakhi (1952), was given a lukewarm reception by viewers. It was the comedy film Avakashikal that put Merryland on the success chart. Mantravadi (1957) was the first film that made Subramaniam a director. He went on to direct 59 films, out of the 69 films produced by Merryland. The list includes a string of landmark films of Malayalam cinema history.[1]

In the 1950s, Malayalam film production were shuttling between Madras and Udaya Studio in Alappuzha. It was at that time Merryland Studio was set up at a five-and-a-half acres of land, easing the productions of Malayalam films. At its peak time, the studio used to employ close to 80 personnel. Many of the actors and actresses frequently appeared in Merryland films: Prem Nazir acted in at least 30 films in the first 10 years of his career, Sathyan was introduced in Merryland's debut film Atmasakhi, Madhu who appeared in many films was also a family friend of theirs, K. V. Shanthi was also known by the name "Merryland Shanthi" for her long-term association with the studio, the trio Travancore sisters also closely associated with the studio, Sharada also worked in many of the films. Others who were introduced through Neela Productions' films are Kottarakkara Sreedharan Nair, Miss Kumari, Vinodini Sasimohan, Srividya, Aranmula Ponnamma, S. P. Pillai among others. The competition between Udaya Studio and Merryland Studio was so intense that at one point when Merryland released Bhaktha Kuchela, Udaya released Krishna Kuchela with the same story, after that one they decided to stop the practice. Their Kumarasambhavam won the first Kerala State Film Award for Best Film when it was established in 1969. Merryland's films revolved around either social issues or mythology, they were mostly known for mythological films which were the most successful.[2] Bhakta Kuchela, Sree Guruvayoorappan, Swami Ayyappan, and Sree Murukan were among their most successful mythological films.[3]

Hridayathinte Nirangal was the last movie to come out of Merryland. Subramaniam died in 1979, and it spelt the death knell of Merryland Studio as a powerhouse of Malayalam Cinema.[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11] In 2021, screenwriter John Paul wrote in an article that "The studios set up by P. Subramaniam and Kunchacko—Merryland and Udaya—respectively, led to the development of a full-fledged Malayalam film industry".[12]

In 2022, Merryland Studios resumed film production under the newly christened company Merryland Cinemas, debuting with Hridayam (2022).[citation needed]

FilmsEdit

Under Neela ProductionsEdit

Under Merryland CinemasEdit

TelevisionEdit

The following serials are produced by Karthikeyan and Murugan under the banner of Merryland, Sree Subramaniam Enterprises, Sree Saravana Enterprises and Sree Saran Creations.

Year Title Language Genre Director Channel Notes
2004–2005 Kadamattathu Kathanar Malayalam Horror T. S. Saji Asianet - Prakash Paul, Sukanya, Sajitha Betti 2005 Ezham Kadalinakkare Thriller Suresh Unnithan Anand, Sukanya, Indrans
2005 Krishna Kripa Sagaram Mythology Rajasenan Amrita TV
2006–2007 Swami Ayyappan Suresh Unnithan Asianet
2008 Shri Krishna Leela Suresh Unnithan
2008–2010 Shri Mahabhagavatham Thulasidas
2009 Swami Ayyappan Saranam Thulasidas
2009–2012 Devimahathmyam Viji Thampi, Thulasidas Completed 1000 episodes
2010–2012 Alavudeente Albuthavilakku Fantasy T.S.Suresh Babu
2011–2015 Amma Drama Kannan Thamarakkulam/Dileep Thavanur Completed 1008 episodes
2012 Sabarimala Shri Dharmashastha Mythology Thulasidas
2015–2016 Vazhve Mayam Drama Manoj L. M. DD Malayalam
2015 Sreekrishna Vijayam Mythology Manoj L. M. Janam TV
2015 Durga Drama Kurupp Mararikkulam
2015 7 Rathrikal Horror Manoj L. M. Asianet
2015–2017 Pranayam Drama Sudheesh Sankar/Thulasidas
2016–2018 Sathyam Shivam Sundaram Mythology Manoj LM Amrita TV
2018 Kumarasambhavam Manoj L. M.
2019–2020 Sabarimala Swami Ayyappan Kannan Thamarakkulam Asianet
2020–Present Paadatha Painkilli Drama Sudheesh Sankar Asianet

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Lekshmy Gopalakrishnan (2 January 2009). "Visionary and entrepreneur". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 7 March 2011.
  2. ^ "A second home for Mollywod". The Hindu. 8 December 2016. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  3. ^ "Merryland Studio: A slice of Mollywood History".
  4. ^ Chelangad, Saju (28 December 2014). "Story of a pioneer and his studio". The Hindu.
  5. ^ "P Subramaniam's biography released".
  6. ^ Chandran, Baiju (28 November 2013). "The Capital of cinema". The Hindu.
  7. ^ Guy, Randor (8 March 2014). "Yaanai Valartha Vaanambadi (1959)". The Hindu.
  8. ^ "മടങ്ങിയെത്തുന്നു മെറിലാൻഡ്".
  9. ^ Kasbekar, Asha (2006). Pop Culture India!: Media, Arts, and Lifestyle. ISBN 9781851096367.
  10. ^ "A staunch lover of cinema".
  11. ^ Sathyendran, Nita (20 February 2015). "Framed by heritage". The Hindu.
  12. ^ Kumar, M. K. Sunil (23 October 2021). "Based on a true story". The Times of India. Retrieved 26 October 2021.