16 Mar – In an effort to boost the blooming film industry, films produced or filmed in Malaysia will receive a rebate of 30 per cent off the production cost at the National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS), as an incentive to boost the local film industry.
Information Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim who was present at the launching programme for the Transformation of Local Film Industry organised by FINAS yesterday, said the decision was approved at the National Economic Advisory Council (NEAC) meeting last week.
He said the minimum amount that would be considered for such rebate are films that cost RM5 million (foreign films filmed in Malaysia) and RM2.5 million for locally produced films.
"This means for every RM5 million spent, there will be a rebate of 30 per cent to the film maker. As for local film makers who spend RM2.5 million, they will also be able to enjoy the 30 per cent return."
When met with local filmmaker Norman Abdul Halim of KRU Studios, he said, "I think it's a good idea. A typical production with a budget of RM1.5 million will not deliver a production value that is as good as one with a budget of RM2.5 million, therefore with this new implementation, it will encourage our local film industry to increase their production quality, as well as experiment with other (expensive) techniques to be on par with other countries."
However Norman said he was quite hesitant with FINAS' earlier decision to allow the release of two local films per week.
"As a producer, I would prefer only one local movie per month, but the reality is that many are producing movies as well. Therefore, we have to expect that competition is going to get though for the two movies opening each week, and with a heavy heart, I accept the new ruling," said Norman.
The 30 per cent production rebate as well as the ruling for the release of two local movies per week is effective immediately from this year onwards.