Some of the makers and stars of the upcoming local feel-good film of the year "Kolumpo" came by to Cinema Online's studios to chat about their experiences as friends and workmates, doing what they love to do and even reminisce about how they first wanted to be in the film industry.
Cinema Online's interview with director Shiekh Munasar, producer James Wong, and stars Sharifah Amani, Amirul Ariff and Azad Jazmin was conducted on 6 November at Cinema Online's headquarters.
Q: For Kolumpo, there are three different directors to direct the film. Was it difficult to share your creativity on the set?
Sheikh: It's basically three short stories. The other films are directed by Bront Palarae and Rozi Isma. We all have known each other for a very long time and it started off as just a small project but as we got into it, we realized that it actually had potential! We don't really have any problems as directors sharing one film, because we respect each other and share our ideas.
Q: To Amirul, Amani and Azad, what are your roles in "Kolumpo"?
Ariff: I play a teenager who wants to experience the city but lacks confidence. The character then meets Amani's character, who changes his life.
Amani: I find my character very whimsical and mysterious. She appears out of nowhere. She's a little rainbow you see in the middle of KL for no reason. Sometimes city folk like us in KL don't appreciate the beauty of city life and we are quick to judge and we don't pay attention to any details. My character shows his character in one night to discover the city he's in.
Azad: I play an Indian man who had just reached KL from a plane and... poof! Everything changes for him.
Q: What do you think the audience will like about Kolumpo?
Amani: I know it's a thing that we did out of love. Hopefully the bonding experience we've had making the film will show through. There are also some really special places we've found for the film and it's sometimes unbelievable that those places are here in Kuala Lumpur.
Q: Who was in charge of looking for the places?
Amani: (points at Shiekh) And these are the places where you always visit but you don't realise what it is! The city is full of flaws, far from perfect but it is our city, and that's what's beautiful about it.
Sheikh: For example there was this one Japanese pub that I have never even noticed until when I wanted to write the script for the film and needed ideas!
Q: Amani, seeing as you come from a very artistic family, how do you think your family compares to other regular families?
Amani: I don't know, I think they're freaky, and that they're not right. That's the best part.
Q: What about the rest of you? How did your family react when you first got into the film industry?
Sheikh: My family came from a totally different background. At first any family would be sceptical. When I first wanted to study film I didn't tell my dad. I did tell my mom though. I ran from Johor and then I told my dad a week later. He did accept it in the end. It didn't take long.
Amirul: My father is a film critic, so films weren't too much of a stretch. No one really had a problem with me being an actor.
Azad: I was a banker from Penang! My mom one day sort of forced me into auditioning for this reality show. So, I started my career on a reality show on NTV 7!
James: I came from a pharmaceutical background, and it took quite a big jump for me from pharmacy to films. My mom is supportive but she still doesn't understand why we all work so late all the time! (laughs)
Q: What are your favourite things about the city of Kuala Lumpur?
Sheikh: A lot of things, really. There are a lot of people you never think you're going to meet. So it's like a melting pot, with all kinds of people and characters.
Azad: I love the attitude! But of all the states for me, Penang's the best place. You can find good food there, good people and even handsome guys there (laughs). So I now know what KL is all about after shooting this film! People come from all sorts of places to be in KL.
Amirul: I like the fact that people here are survivors. They're all trying really hard to live and earn a living in a complex city.
Amani: I'm so bias because I'm a city girl! I love the different walks of life, and the characters we attract. The beauty in our city is actually quite marvellous. Where else can you find food at a late hour? You cant find a 'mamak' elsewhere in the world! There's no 'mamak' in India either, because they all close at 10pm!
"Kolumpo" will be out on 5 December 2013.