By V. Shuman
"Every time you find some humour in a difficult situation, you win" goes a quote by famous cartoon character Snoopy.
In that sense, renowned singer Santesh Kumar is not only "winning" the coronavirus lockdown battle, but is also helping fellow Malaysians do the same, by getting them to laugh at his hilarious videos clips of Tamil movie scenes and songs dubbed in Malay.
Astro Ulagam spoke to the singer, who narrated how he got the trend started, during the first Movement Control Order (MCO) in 2020.
"It was mainly stress (of being locked down) and not being able to give content to my fans, that inspired me to do this.
"I realised that many artistes were doing cover songs, dance, or cooking on their social media channels, and I wanted to do something different," he said.
The 36-year-old crooner was motivated to do this to maintain and increase his fan base, and to remain relevant during the lockdown, during which entertainment activities were heavily curtailed.
"During the lockdown, I had the time and space to explore my creativity. That's how I decided to settle on dubbing content into Malay," he recalled.
The fact that Santesh already has a huge following among the Malay crowd - thanks to his twin hits "Amalina" and "Mymuna" became a crucial factor in him deciding to offer the content in the national language.
If you are active on TikTok, or even WhatsApp, there's hardly any chance of you missing a chance to watch his hilariously dubbed clips - often depicting famous Indian actors like the Sivaji Ganesan, or Ulaganayagan Kamal Haasan.
For that, Santesh and his wife comb through thousands of clips online to decide on which scene to dub, according to the lockdown theme.
According to Santesh, his clips has had good reach among his Indian and Malay fan base, on his social media accounts.
Besides sourcing his own content, Santesh has also served up several clips based on his fans' requests. These include dubbing clips of comedy actor Vadivelu.
Santesh even gladly embraces the "stress buster" moniker his fans have given him, due to the reaction his clips elicit among viewers.
The singer doesn't really have a target set for his dubbing clips, as he dubs according to his availability and mood.
He has churned out more than 30 hilarious dubbing clips since the first MCO.
Asked about the challenges faced during the dubbing, Santesh said it is to get the lip sync right.
"This especially when the original clip is in Tamil, and I have to dub it in Malay. Plus, I have to dub the words to fit the lockdown context," he said, adding that it usually takes a few hours to dub one short clip, given the reshoots and all.
Santesh admits that ideally, he would have liked to produce more music during the lockdown period, but acknowledged that it is not cost and time effective.
"Dubbing videos is cheaper, and takes lesser time.
"Plus I get to entertain Malaysians who are in the same boat (under lockdown), with this dubbing," he said.
Well said Santesh! Keep the laughs coming.
You can watch some of his hilarious dubs on his Facebook page, which has over 561,000 followers. Here are samples below:
Photos & Videos source: Santesh Kumar Facebook
Fri Apr 22 2022
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