Actress Aranmula Ponnamma
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Aranmula Ponnamma is a Malayalam film actress
and is widely described as a mother figure in Malayalam cinema.
Aranumala ponnamma was born as one of five children of Malethu Kesava Pillai and
Parukutty Amma in Aranmula, Pathanamthitta, Travancore. She started her career
at the age of 12 as a Carnatic music vocalist. At the age of 15, she was
appointed as a music teacher in a primary school in Pala, before starting to
teach in the senior classes. Later she joined the first batch of students at the
Swati Tirunal Music Academy.
Ponnamma's acting debut happened only when she became 29, in a play titled
Bhagyalakshmi opposite Augustine Joseph, father of renowned singer K.J. Yesudas.
She went on to act in some more popular plays, before debuting in films. She
debut role was that of the mother of the character played by Miss Kumari, a
prominemt actress at that time in Sasidharan(1950).The same year she did another
mother role in the Thikkurissy Sukumaran Nair starrer Amma, which was the first
film of noted producer T.E. Vasudevan .She soon got typecasted in mother roles.
In her own words: "I did play a negative role in Paadunna Puzha and that of a
wayward woman in Yachakan. But after that I was always cast as the mother. As
the mother of two children, I was very comfortable in that role. In her career
spanning over 60 years, she acted as the mother or grandmother of first
generation actors like Thikkurissy Sukumaran Nair, second generation actors like
Prem Nazir and Sathyan and third generation actors like Mohanlal and Suresh Gopi,
who happens to be the husband of her granddaughter.
Ponnamma received the State and National awards for best supporting actress for
her performance in Kathapurushan(1995), directed by Adoor Gopalakrishnan. She
was awarded the J.C. Daniel Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2006
She died on 21st February 2011 at the age of 97
( Courtesy: Wikkipedia )