Santhanam, the 'Aayirathil Oruvan'

Many worked for Selva’s 'Aayirathil Oruvan'. But the one who is appreciated by one and all is T Santhanam, art director of the Selvaraghavan's magnum opus.
"The role of an art director in films is crucial. He is responsible for overall visual appearance and how the movie communicates visually, stimulates moods, contrasts features, and psychologically appeals to a target audience," he says.
Referred by his colleagues as 'Santy', Santhanam, who made his debut in 'Sokka Thangam', says, "I thank Bhagiyaraj sir for giving me a break in film industry."
Santy came into contact with Selvaraghavan and worked as art director in 'Pudhupettai'. "Selva's association changed me a lot. I became more serious about my work. Working for 'Aayirathil Oruvan' was no easy task. Since it was a period film intertwined with fiction, we had to do an extensive research. We browsed on the net, visited museums and interacted with historians and scholars before designing the sets," he says.
"Selva has a nose for details. It was difficult satisfying him. Hard labour for over 150 days to erect such huge sets was a satisfying experience for me. With more freedom and no constraint on budget (thanks to producer Raveendran), I was able to create what I envisioned," Santhanam adds.


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