Actor Fauzi Nawawi’s apology on making light of rape is not good enough, says acting coach Fatimah Abu Bakar

A screenshot of Fauzi Nawawi on the talk show 'Rumah No. 107' that went viral. Photo: TikTok

Actress and acting coach Fatimah Abu Bakar couldn’t believe that actor Fauzi Nawawi took so much glee and pride when he spoke about playing the role of a rapist in a movie, when he appeared on a recent talk show programme.

“It was so distressing to watch and listen to the insensitivity he showed when talking about filming the rape scene,” the 66-year-old told StarLifestyle.

“What's maddening too is that he has defiled and broke the code of respect and trust between actors which are important during acting, especially when acting in sensitive scenes like rape.

“Actors are supposed to be fleshing out a character, so if there is a rape scene, an actor must have the understanding that he is that character and act out the detestable scene professionally. But what he (Fauzi) did was... to trample that trust and respect into the ground.

“Now young actors are going to watch him and get the wrong message that it's OK to have fun filming such scenes.”

Fauzi, 48, had described a deleted rape scene in the 2007 film Anak Halal in detail, while making light of rape, when he went on the local talk show. Furthermore, he named the actress – who was then a teenager – on the programme when he was not supposed to.

Both Fatimah Abu Bakar and daughter Sharifah Amani are vocal about violence against women. Photo: Faihan Ghani/The StarBoth Fatimah Abu Bakar and daughter Sharifah Amani are vocal about violence against women. Photo: Faihan Ghani/The Star

The video – which was originally aired in June – went viral on Tuesday (Oct 19), and Fauzi was slammed for his callous talk.

On Wednesday (Oct 20), Fauzi released a video on Instagram apologising to the actress and her family. His wife, actress Lisdawati, had also commented that people should stop talking about it as Fauzi has apologised.

But as pointed out by Fatimah, Fauzi’s apology sounded hollow.

“Yes, he apologised but he hasn’t apologised for making light of a very, very serious matter. And he hasn’t apologised for dragging his fellow actors’ reputation down the drain.

“What he has done on those two levels, I cannot forgive.

“The purpose of including a rape scene is to raise awareness on rape and violence against women. Also, there are many ways to film such a scene – it need not be so direct, a filmmaker can be subtle and creative about it, and still get the message across,” said Fatimah.

A filepic of Fauzi Nawawi with wife actress Lisdawati. Photo: Izzrafiq Alias/The StarA filepic of Fauzi Nawawi with wife actress Lisdawati. Photo: Izzrafiq Alias/The Star

She added that it’s crucial for a film set to actually have rehearsals to ensure that all the actors feel safe while filming such scenes.

"If there is one good thing that has come out of this is that both men and women are speaking up and people are taking this very seriously. Hopefully all the parties involved also realise their wrongdoing."

Malaysian artiste like Bront Palarae, Joe Flizzow, Lisa Surihani and Sharifah Amani have voiced out on the matter as well.

Actor Bront tweeted: "Tiada kata-kata yang mampu menutup rasa kesal. (There are no words to express regret). We need to be better than this. #NoMoreRapeJokes."

Singer Joe took to Instagram, pleading to fellow artistes to not joke and laugh about rape and sexual harassment matters anymore.

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Fauzi Nawawi , Rape


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