29 Mar – The Force was extra strong in Malaysia yesterday when Roger Christian, the man behind the production design of the "Star Wars" films was down to greet fans and reveal plans of being involved with getting Malaysia's very first Oscar.
The 68-year-old Hollywood filmmaker, set decorator and production designer also had a mini one-day "Star Wars" exhibition at Ben's, Bangsar Shopping Centre last evening hosted by the Star Wars Malaysia Fan Club (SWMFC), especially to meet enthusiastic fans of the popular sci-fi franchise who managed to get their "Star Wars" merchandise signed as well as pose for photographs with the man himself!
After being presented with a localised token of appreciation that incorporated a 'wayang kulit' style Darth Vader by the president of SWMFC, Adi Azhar, Christian proceeded to sign several "Star Wars" buntings that will be auctioned off for charity as part of the club's on-going community service efforts.
Christian is down working on a project with Malaysian entrepreneur Patrick Thevarajah, the Creative Director of Seers Partnership, a brand consultancy firm which will be delving in film production on a much wider scale with Christian on board. "I have a few things planned with Patrick in Malaysia and one of them is a Zombie film that's produced in Malaysia. We're currently in talks with a few industry people," revealed Christian, who has an Oscar for Best Art Direction for his work in "Star Wars".
Thevarajah who would serve as producer of the epic style Zombie film, "Temple Of The Undead", said that Christian will be helming the director's seat for the Malaysian production and they will be aiming for it to win the country its very first Oscar.
No stranger to directing, Christian had served as second unit director alongside George Lucas for "Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace" in 1999 as well as the cult film, "Battlefield Earth" in 2000 which starred John Travolta and Forest Whitaker amongst other Hollywood talents.
"Temple Of The Undead" is said to utilise cinematography similar to the movies "300" and "Sin City", and will include talents from abroad as an Oscar nominated screenwriter along with several nominated cast members are said to be involved although names are kept mum at this point of early discussions.
Production is expected to begin by mid this year, if not latest by the year's end.
Next on their agenda, Christian and Thevarajah are currently in Sarawak at the first ASEAN International Film Festival and Awards (AIFFA) to mingle with people of the film industry especially actress Michelle Yeoh, who will be there for a special screening of her film "The Lady".
For more updates of the developments of "Temple Of The Undead", stay tuned to Cinema Online!