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Rasul Pookkutty

Native PlaceAnchal, Kollam
CareerCast (4)

Sound Designing - 7 Movies

Rasul Pookkutty was the youngest of eight children born to an impoverished family. His father was a private bus ticket checker. He did his law graduation at Govt.Law college Trivandrum,which he could not complete. He graduated from The Film and Television Institute of India in1995, Pune. Later in 2011 June he completed his LLB at Trivandrum Govt. Law College to fulfill his father's desire.

Pookutty moved to Mumbai after his graduation. Pookutty made his debut in sound design with the 1997 film "Private Detective: Two Plus Two Plus One", directed by Rajat Kapoor. He got his big break with the critically acclaimed 2005 film Black, directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali. He subsequently engineered sound for major productions like Musafir (2004), Zinda (2006), Traffic Signal (2007), Gandhi, My Father (2007), Saawariya (2007) and Dus Kahaniyaan (2007).

Working with Danny Boyle, whom he describes as one of his favourite directors, for Slum-dog Millionaire was a completely new experience to Pookkutty. In 2009 he won the Oscar Academy Award for Best Sound Mixing along with Ian Tapp and Richard Pryke for his work in Slum-dog Millionaire.

His historical Academy award acceptance speech runs like this:

"This is unbelievable. We can't believe this. Ladies and gentlemen... sorry... I share the stage with two magicians, you know, who created the very ordinary sounds of Bombay, the cacophony of Bombay, into a soul-stirring, artful resonance called Slumdog Millionaire. I come from a country and a civilization that given the universal word. That word is preceded by silence, followed by more silence. That word is 'Om'. So I dedicate this award to my country. Thank you, Academy, this is not just a sound award, this is history being handed over to me. My sincere and deepest gratitude to my teachers, Danny Boyle, Christian Colson, Paul Ritchie, Pravesh... and everybody who has contributed to this film, Glenn Freemantle and all the sound mixers. I dedicate this to you guys. Thank you, Academy. Thank you very much"

Pookutty attributes his achievement to Malayalam films. In his own words,"Sound designing and mixing were never a good production aspect in Bollywood until the film Black came. But I grew up watching films in Malayalam like Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s Elippathayam and Aravindan’s Kummatti, Pokkuveyil and Thampu where the sublime use of sound represents the cultural context. Devadas and Krishnanunny have done immensely truthful work in these films. My work is an extension of theirs. Their works taught me the art of blending technology with aesthetics.

Pookutty is married to Shadia. They have a son Rayan and a daughter Salna.

Prepared by: Jayasree Thottekkat