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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

ENTERTAINMENT: M.Jamil makes a comeback

The cast of Momok The Movie. From left are Mior Ahmat, Hairina, Mariam, Jamaluddin, Faizal, Aziz, Sarimah, Shikin, Shazleen, Siti Rohani and Jamil. Siti Sarah Saqirah, 10, and Siti Batriesya Marsya, seven, are in the front row.

ENTERTAINMENT: M. Jamil makes a comeback



Director returns to film-making with Momok The Movie. DENNIS CHUA writes.

M. JAMIL, son of silver screen icon Datuk Sarimah Ahmad and the most promising actor at the Second Malaysian Film Festival in 1982, is once again donning his movie-maker’s cap, after a 15-year hiatus.The producer/director’s latest project is a scary and funny “expansion” of his 2004 short VCD movie Momok.Jamil, who won his first major award in 1982 for playing Sarimah’s son in the tear-jerker Dia Ibuku, is teaming up with his mother again for the first time in 20 years, in Momok The Movie, set for release on the first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri next month.Mother and son last collaborated in Jamil’s Warna-Warna Hati, a 1990 film directed by A.R. Badul. They first starred together in Jejak Bertapak in 1982.

“I play a driver in this horror-comedy, while my mother plays the concerned parent of the protagonist Adlin,” Jamil said.The cast includes Jamil’s wife Siti Rohani Wahid, their daughters Siti Nursyahira Nabila, Siti Qasrina Qistina, Siti Nayli Yusrina, Siti Batriesya Marsya and Siti Sarah Saqirah, Datuk Aziz Sattar (of Bujang Lapok fame), Akademi Fantasia 4 champion Faizal Ramly, Raja Lawak 2 winner Nabil Ahmad, Bruneian actress Mimi Rahzia, Abon, Rosliza Rosli, Hairina Halim (Akademi Fantasia 6), Ruminah Sidek, Shazleen Shabi, Hanis Zalikha, Jamaluddin Kadir and Mior Ahmat Zaudi.

Jamil is overjoyed that Aziz had agreed to reprise his role. “Pak Aziz starred in five of my productions, including the last film I made, Tarik in 1993, and the original Momok. Once again, he’s playing Pak Ajis, the warong owner who is a ‘gold mine’ of horror stories.”Jamil said Aziz’s Pak Ajis was the only character from Momok who made it to Momok The Movie.“In Momok, he tells horror stories to visitors to his stall, and they share their experiences with him. It’s pretty much the same in this one, but the horror stories are much scarier than before.”Momok The Movie is the story of Adlin (Faizal) who returns to his village in Temerloh, Pahang, for a holiday and visits Pak Ajis’ stall.Joined by close friend Kadir (Abon, who also starred in Momok), Adlin learns about the pontianak, pocong, orang bunian, sampuk, zombie and the mohini of Indian folklore.

Along the way, strange things begin to happen and Adlin discovers that there is more to the ghost-loving hawker than we know.“I spent four months coming up with the script and filming took a month.“I avoided using computer-generated images as I wanted Momok The Movie to be as realistic as possible.”Jamil said he chose to make a horror comedy because Malaysians love the genre.

Faizal thanked Jamil for giving him his ‘big break’ in acting.“Momok The Movie is my first major starring role, and it’s an honour to work with Jamil and Sarimah, who are a brilliant mother-and-son team,” he said.“I’ve also done a film Pulau Asmara which will be out in October.”“I love comedy and horror, and this is just the movie for me,” he said, adding that he would love to act alongside fellow Terengganu native Akademi Fantasia star and duet partner Heliza Helmi.“I’m really proud of her. She did great in Syurga Cinta.”Aziz said he was happy to be back as an “enhanced” Pak Ajis. “Pak Ajis is not like me, but we share one thing in common — we are great storytellers,” he said, adding that he loved playing the character who was both “scary and funny”.

Sarimah, who plays Faizal’s mother, said that while her character was a supporting one, it “turned the tide” in the story. “She is the voice of reason and keeps the other characters mindful of who they are,” she said.Hairina, who plays the mother of a possessed woman, said Momok The Movie was her first film and she was excited about it.“Last year, I starred in the play Patriot and now I’m in the 8TV series Blogger Boy,” she said.Budding actress Mariam Rahman, who plays a pontianak in the movie, said it was her big screen debut.“I’ve been starring in several television movies over the last year, and prior to that, I was a students’ adviser in Akademi Fantasia 6,” she said.Another newcomer, Shikin Mior Ahmat, whose father Mior Ahmat, plays one of the main characters, said it was an honour to work with Jamil and Sarimah as they were screen legends.Momok The Movie is produced by Jamil’s company Galaksi Seni and is supported by the National Film Corporation (Finas). Producer David Teo’s company MIG is the distributor. Its patron is Tengku Mahkota Pahang Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah

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