KUALA LUMPUR: After a long wait, controversial movie Tanda Putera will be screened on Aug 29.
The movie is a poignant story of two men – friends, colleagues, legendary leaders – who held together a nation after its day of infamy, and put their lives on the line, literally, to do so.
It is the story of then prime minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein and his good friend and the then Home Affairs minister, Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman (played by Rusdi Ramli and Zizan Nin respectively).
It is a bittersweet experience for director Datin Paduka Shuhaimi Baba to finally see the movie hit the big screens on Aug 29, in time for the 56th Merdeka Day celebration on Aug 31.
Both Shuhaimi and movie executive producer Aida Buyong were in a jubilant mood during the screening on Tuesday.
“Despite what we have gone through, which was quite a lot, I really hope the audience will come with an open mind.
“This movie is about our heroes. They are my heroes – Tun Razak and Tun Dr Ismail,” said Shuhaimi prior to the movie gala screening at GSC Signature Gardens Mid Valley in Kuala Lumpur on Monday night.
Asked about The New Village, which was also embroiled in controversy, Aida felt the movie was in the same boat as Tanda Putera.
“Some people got really riled up after watching only a trailer (of both) movies. They don’t even know what the whole movie is about. They just drew their own conclusion based only on the trailer,” said Aida.
Despite the backlash, Shuhaimi said she had no regrets.
While waiting for the movie’s fate, Shuhaimi and her cast and production team have had to endure a backlash including hate mails and death threats.
It was all triggered by a YouTube trailer which features snippets of the dramatisation of the May 13 race riots that took place in 1969.
She also reiterated that the scenes of events surrounding May 13 only made up about 10 minutes of the 115-minute film. She said that with Tanda Putera, she wanted to give the audience a different side of the local movie industry apart from the horror, gangsterism and comedy genres.
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