Catching Up With Pearle Maaney…
With her distinctive Afro, large kohl-rimmed eyes and mile-wide grin, she has, arguably, one of the most widely recognized faces in Kochi- particularly among the youth. Don’t be surprised if you see her zipping down the street in her motorcycle, because the lady is a biker chick and looks damn good riding one. She is PEARLE MAANEY- model, anchor, actor, writer and VJ. She anchors an extremely popular show on Yes Indiavision called Yes Jukebox which has a considerable fan following, owing in no small part to Pearle’s madcap humor and terrific audience connect. She recently made her movie debut in Samir Tahir’s much hyped road movie, perhaps the first of its kind in Malayalam cinema, Neelakasham Pacha Kadal Chuvanna Bhoomi.
MALAYALI magazine caught up with Kochi’s quirky ‘it’ girl and did a fun, rapid fire interview session with her, the highlights of which are as follows:
So what’s with the interesting name?
I was gifted this name by my aunt Pearly, who passed away when I was just a few months old. I have googled the meaning of my name and found out that the gates to heaven are called the Pearly gates. So in a sense, I am the gateway to heaven 😀
That shock of curly hair is your signature- is it natural?
My hair is not unusual, in fact most Malayalis have curly hair. The difference is that I let mine loose sometimes. I started doing that when I went to Bangalore to do my degree and people immediately began to take notice of it. Up until then, I never knew my hair could make a statement of its own.
I come from a joint family comprising 13 members.There are so many people at home and never a dull moment, so much so that sometimes my mom and dad don’t even realize that I’m not there. Now I’m focusing on building a larger family outside my home. My dream is to make this world one big fat happy family!
How did the love for motorcycles begin?
It was always there. My dad, who’s my hero, encouraged me to do whatever I wanted to do. He never discriminated against my likes and decisions based on my gender. I believed I could ride a bike and with dad’s help and some effort convincing mom, I got myself a bike. We live in a society where people are looking for examples to emulate, and my message to girls everywhere is that bikes are meant for everyone.The thrill of riding a bike is open to all.
What is your current ride?
I have a Hero Honda Glamor- my first bike.
How has the response to Neelakasham been? Describe your experience working w/ Samir Tahir, Dulqar and the dynamic young team of NPKCB?
The reviews were good. I think we should look at each movie from a broader perspective. I believe Neelakasham will shine more as time passes. I feel happy to be part of a work that clearly stood out from the dime a dozen formulaic movies. The team behind Neelakasham is a bunch of vibrant youngsters who do things with a greater purpose.
How did you get into visual media?
I did Media Studies from Christ University, Bangalore. It gave me a very general if technical knowledge about media. Now I’m actually working in the field, taking my own time to explore this area and gaining a functional knowledge of it. To me, media is the key to reach out to the world and my dream, like I said before, is to make this world one big family. Here, we hope to create a circle of people who come together through music and we all love music don’t we?
You have written the screenplay for an English movie, The Perfectionist. How did that come about?
As soon as I finished my course, I was a little confused about what to do next. Media being such a vast area, I wasn’t quite sure what to choose to specialize in. I had a lot of energy in me that i wanted to release, so I channeled all that into a script that I wrote in a month’s time. We shot the whole movie in a span of 30 days on a shoestring budget. Due to various reasons, the movie has not been released..probably when the time is right, it will.
What’s a typical day like, in Pearle Maaney’s life?
I do not like the typical or predictable. I am not one for a routine way of life. I have the privilege of making every day unique and it makes me feel alive, doing it. There is scope for so much to happen in life if only we would venture out of the tried, tested and predictable pattern of life that we take comfort in. It keeps us from following our natural instinct for adventure. I leave a lot of room for unpredictability now.
What does love mean to you?
Love is the answer to all the challenges that the world is facing today. My dad always says ‘You are the warrior of God, fight with the sword of love’.
Have you found your Mr Right? What’s he like?
Yes I have and he is pretty perfect the way he is
Red and green. It is a combination I associate with Kerala…green moss on red brick.
Kanji, payar, chammanthi, rasam…I love my naadan food.
I have some funny habits but I wouldn’t necessarily call them bad.
What do you see yourself doing 5 years from now?
I just see myself living amongst people with good hearts.
What is your message to young Indians in America?
Dear brothers and sisters, we miss you guys. India is probably one of the most mysterious lands in the world. There is so much of it yet to be explored. India needs voices like you to speak for it. You live in a country that is the world’s greatest cultural melting pot, while india is rich in indigenous culture. Being Indian Americans, you are lucky to have the best of both worlds. Be proud of what you are and believe in yourselves.
MALAYALI magazine wishes Pearle all the very best in all her endeavors, personal and professional. With her unique world view, vivacity and confidence, this young lady is sure to go places!