Salleh smooths ruffled feathers in film fraternity

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PETALING JAYA: There is to be no boycott of this year’s 28th Malaysia Film Festival (FFM) awards.

This decision was made at a meeting of several film-based organisations and Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak this morning, Malay Mail Online reported.

It quoted Finas Director-General Kamil Othman as saying that Salleh offered a “clear explanation” and clarified misconceptions, to the satisfaction of all the groups present.

Last Wednesday, Salleh had opened up the Best Picture category to all films.

Previously, it was restricted to films with 70% Bahasa Malaysia content, meaning popular movies like Ola Bola and Jagat were left out.

This led to much controversy and some film personalities publicly stating they would boycott the awards ceremony.

At the same time, Salleh, to appease some in the film fraternity, also created a new category — for Best Film in National Language.

The news portal said Finas Deputy Chairman Yusof Haslam said all the associations present agreed to adhere to the minister’s advice to stop their infighting and to unite.

Those who attended the meeting included the Film Directors’ Association of Malaysia, the Professional Film Workers Association of Malaysia (Profima), Artiste Association of Malaysia (Seniman), Federation of Screen Guilds Societies of Malaysia (Gafim) and TV Producers Association of Malaysia (PTVM).