KUALA LUMPUR: Controversial local film Tanda Putera, which depicts events leading up to and during the May 13, 1969 riots, will hit Malaysian cinemas on Aug 29 this year, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek.
"It will be released on Aug 29," he told reporters at the Malaysian National Film Development Corporation (Finas) centre.
Ahmad Shabery had previously called for Finas to publicly screen Tanda Putera.
Directed by Datin Paduka Shuhaimi Baba, the film depicts events during the May 13, 1969 riots, focusing on Malaysia's second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein and his deputy Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman.
Produced in 2011 by Persona Pictures Sdn Bhd, the RM4 million film carries a PG13 rating and was supposed to be screened from Nov 15 last year.
Commenting on the date, Ahmad said he preferred the film to be screened earlier, during the Hari Raya Aidilfitri holidays.
"People have been waiting for the film to come out, so the sooner the better," he said.
However, Finas officials said that if Tanda Putera was released then, it would not do well at the box office.
Finas director-general Raja Rozaimie Raja Dalnish Shah said that two other movies were scheduled for a Aug 8 release Adnan Sempit 3 andLemak Kampung Santan.
"Based on our previous experience, collections for films released during Hari Raya aren't that good...Three Malay movies during Hari Raya is not good," he said.
Raja Rozaimie said that the film's producers asked for the Aug 29 date, adding this allowed it to be marketed from now.
The Cabinet earlier held back the screening of the film as it was concerned it would cause conflict among communities.
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