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“Sumolah” Release Delayed March 9, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Journalism, Movies, Sumolah.

According to Afldin’s blog, the movie “Sumolah” has been delayed, due to some intricacies in the Wajib Tayang policy’s internal workings. (Wajib tayang, which is translated to ‘compulsory screening‘, is a policy set by FINAS where two local films are allowed to be released in cinemas per month, with a two-week gap between their release dates.)

Hence, we’re going to have to hold our breathe a little longer, till May 10th or 17th(the date has yet to be confirmed, though I sure hope it doesn’t clash with “Spiderman 3”!).

More updates to come – so keep an eye out on this spot!

Sumolah Movie Poster


Meeting the Cast of “Mukhsin” March 7, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Events, Journalism, Malaysian Movies, Movies, Mukhsin, Photos.

When I first heard about the movie months back, after having to write an article about the film, I thought, “Well, here’s a chance for me to finally catch a movie by the great Yasmin Ahmad”. After all, everyone who’s a fan of indie films here has watched “Sepet” and “Gubra“, and has had tons to say about the films.

So I went for the press screening of the movie @ GSC (Golden Screen Cinemas) in Midvalley, last week. You’ll see how much of an effect bloggers have now, with a special registration table put aside for media, and bloggers. Now, isn’t that just fracking awesome?!?

Bloggers Registration
Bloggers ONLY

However, I went to this side :
Press Registration
Media/Press Peeps

It’s funny how you meet what I’d like to call “Celebrity Bloggers”. You’ve read their blogs over the past years. You’ve heard so much about them, and it’s so darn exciting when you finally see them in person. I saw the famous TV Smith at the registration, and caught a glimpse of Suan, whose blogs I enjoy reading. I think I saw sultanmuzaffar as well. Of course, more exciting was seeing Yasmin Ahmad in person.

After the movie (in which I will put up my review in the next postThe Drowmage’s review here), we had the press conference. I took some awesome pictures, and had fun. The Noob (whom I had to keep telling what questions to ask – I mean, really, is this the quality of journalists our universities are churning out these days? I shudder for the future..) kept wanting to leave, and I had to shove her in the direction of all the stars there. That’s probably the only downside of the press conference.

I caught up with the glamorous Ning Baizura, who went around with her own camera to take photos of the young star Sharifah Aryana. Ning’s got a new movie this year, called “Diva”. Ning was kind enough to let take a pix of her, and a second one when the first shot was spoiled by some nugget walking between the camera and her.

Ning Baizura
Glamorous Ning

Casually spoke to Sharifah Amani (who was also in “Mukhsin”) for a bit about her next movie “Muallaf”, and took a shot of her and Sharifah Aleysha, the next rising star in the family of actresses:

Amani & Aleysha
Sharifah Amani & Sharifah Aleysha

Amani : In the next movie is me, and this one (points at Aleysha).
Drowmage : How about the other 2 sisters (referring Aleya and Aryana)?
Amani :
The other 2 no need lah… what for?
Drowmage : Family movie mar

One of the young stars, who acts as Orked’s playmates in the movie. I’m naming her the “Shirley Temple of Malaysia” – she sounds and looks so much like the child legend (well, the local version anyway)!

The next Shirley Temple?
The Malaysian Shirley Temple?

Some pics from the event:

Cast Pix
“Mukhsin” Cast Pix

Cast Pix 2
The Drowmage corners a pix from the cast members leaving the stage…

Mukhsin/ Mohd Syafie
Mukhsin… er, Mohd Syafie, looking sheepishly at all the cameras being pointed at him.

Yasmin Ahmad
Yasmin Ahmad, laughing at a comment from another actress. I prefer this pix of her looking happy compared to the dry, sober ones I keep seeing online.

The Actress Family
(L to R : Aryana, Fatimah, Amani, Aleysha. Aleya was stuck at work that day.)

Update: The Drowmage’s review of Mukhsin

The Ghost Riders Convoy in Kay-El….. Part 2 February 12, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Bikes, Events, Ghost Rider, Journalism, Photos.
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Today, we admire the Harleys and give some nice photo time to them……In a nice arranged order…

My Angle Shot…
Angle Shot...

Very Judge Dredd….
Judge Dredd bike

Yellow Big Mean Machine
Yellow Big Mean Machine..

Another Awesome bike

Wheels and Chains
Wheels and Chains

Cool Blue…
Cool Blue

All the way from the States – Bike & Rider


Up close…

And today’s favourite is… the forgotten heroes who escorted the big ‘baddies’….
Traffic Police Bikes

Tomorrow we explore the photos on a more.. human side of the photos I took.

The Ghost Riders Convoy in Kay-El….. February 11, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Bikes, Events, Ghost Rider, Journalism, Photos.
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Very tired and long day. Unable to write much – brain has decided to go into meltdown. I have pictures though, they’re still uploading to my Flickr account, so it’s going to take some time.

Today was a promotion event organized by Traxx.fm, TGV and with Columbia Pictures here – showcasing a convoy of bikers in their Harley Davidsons following Traxx.fm and TGV to promote the new upcoming movie “Ghost Rider“.

Fun day, with me and Jasdevism pushing the limits as photographers, and me pushing my limit as a journalist. Pics here were taken with my tourist-like dinky camera. Enjoy…

Super Cool Blue

Bikes Parked

Jasdevism at his Art...

The Roses among the Thorns...

Cool Biker... Guess his Age?

Very Ghost Rider-like

The Biker Chef... and Wifey..

Next up... Gucci Bikers Gear!

The very cute-looking Mila

Remind you of Biker Mice from Mars?

And today’s winner is…

Kapchai Motor vs the Big Guns...

Kapchai Motor Versus the Big Guns…

Till tomorrow, au revoir!

Want to see more? Go here Flickr account.

Had fun, made new friends, learnt new things.

Even the Ex-PM is on YouTube! February 6, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Drowmage's Philosophy, Journalism, Random Thoughts, YouTube.
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Caught something on Jeff Ooi’s blog – the ex-Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dr Mahathir, actually recorded himself talking about his latest conference topic “Criminalising War” and had his people put it up on YouTube.

Dr Mahathir on YouTube!

Who says the older generation aren’t tech-savvy?

He’s 81 years old, been assaulted, yet he’s still going strong. Not going to back down without a fight.

Yeah to Dr Mahathir!

Here’s a tidbit I found, this is why the Drowmage loves the Internet.

The Drowmage muses : On her top 100 things to do before joining her ancestors in the other realm, the Drowmage would probably want her picture taken with Dr Mahathir. He’s truly a living legend . No matter the things he may or may not have done during his rule of 22 years, he brought the country out from underneath the rock and brought it out into the world.

Did Rocky – or Did he Not? January 29, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Drowmage's rants, Journalism.
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I just had to rant about this, because as I was surfing the net today, something truly amazing caught my eye. If you’ve been following the remarkable case brought upon the two political bloggers, Rocky and Jeff Ooi (who have now become more like celebrities already) by the News Straights Times for defamation, then you’d probably know that Rocky was in court this week. Here’s what the Star put up online today:

Star’s Article on Rocky

And here’s the information that was on Jeff Ooi’s blog :

I don’t know where The Star gets their online writers – but the journalist should have verified the information before writing the article, like going to the actual source itself?

And apparently from Jeff Ooi’s comments – which was in answer to someone else’s comments who noted the inconsistencies – the source of the article was AP , which The Star depends on for some of its articles.

This is a laugh and a hoot at journalism as we know it. The Drowmage knows that she is poking fun at her own field, but it’s still funny…. HAHAHAhahaha…..

According to Jeff Ooi’s comments, the Star was made aware of the errors in the article. It’s now been 2 hours since I read about this. No change so far.


Here’s an Update when I checked at about about 2:50 pm :-

Star’s Article on Rocky Rectified

Looks like they managed to cover up the inconsistencies. Can’t find the original ‘wrong’ article now though.

SupPRESSion. OpPRESSion. Oh, wherefore art thou, Free Media of today? January 1, 2007

Posted by drowmage in Drowmage's rants, Injustice, Journalism.

Happy New Year all! It’s a brand new year, it’s 12 hours into 2007, and here I am blogging away and reading fascinating sites from around the world.

I read this report released by ‘Reporters Without Borders’, on the current statistics of journalist being killed or kidnapped or even sent to prison in 2006 worldwide. The stats even include bloggers. Thanks to Jeff Ooi for posting it on his site.

Call me chicken, but it was the suppression and oppression of the media freedom that made me give up my dreams of being a rad journalist back in college and jump to graphic design. Also a reason why personal political opinions on world leaders stay put in my head.

Speaking out for your rights and all that is great, but if you’re going to disappear off the world map for a trumped-up reason cooked up by some asinine individual, you’re better off working as a matador.

Parting question of the day : If a person has nothing to fear over their actions, and believe that what they are doing is correct, then he should not have an issue about providing transparency on his actions or choices. So why, oh why, then, is suppression of free media happening?

Ponder on that, my friends.

Meeting the cast of Sumo-lah December 1, 2006

Posted by drowmage in Events, Journalism, Sumolah.

So I was planning to return back to Penang on Wednesday, when mom tells me she doesn’t really need me there. I log online, and Yap from the magazine I freelance with now corners me…

Yap: morning
Yap: was just about to call u
Yap: are u free tonight?
Me : er… why?
(Never say you’re free until you know if it’s worth saying so)
Yap: got event
Yap: at planet hollywood…
Yap: cast of sumo-lah will be there..
Me : *sigh*
Me : let me toss a coin….
Yap: aiks

So I flip the coin, and heads came up. Looks like a busy night for me again.

Reached Planet Hollywood after picking up Jon from the office – the downpour was awful and I drenched my Vincci shoes in puddles of water. In short – I ‘swam’ to Planet Hollywood from the carpark.

The cast was late due to the rain, met the nice ladies from the film distributor BVI (that’s Buena Vista International to y’all) . And… surprise surprise (not like I didn’t know he was part of the cast) , I met good ol’ Gavin Yap. The former “Red-Haired Tumbler of Malaya” is now all the rage on stage and doing a few TV shows. At least he still remembers me from Penang.

Pleasantries exchanged, numbers exchanged. Then I put my foot in my mouth.

” So.. er.. this movie is like your first step back into the movie industry after the previous one?” I randomly asked. Nevermind that I hadn’t been following the news on friends who turned to stars.

Gavin stares at me for a bit, giving me a weird look before telling me otherwise.

Note to self = next time do research on what friends have been doing, or else shut up.

So later Jon and I mingle a little with the BVI ladies, who were really nice to us. Images of scary dragon-like firebreathing distributors are slowly dissolving.

Eventually after much shuffling around, random photo shots and a few panicked questions from Jon “What am I supposed to be doing again?”, the cast of Sumolah , minus Inthira Charoenpura and Patrick Teoh assemble together and the director himself, Afdlin Shauki (this guy is just so awesome) goes up onstage to greet the crowd.

Now, for most events I’ve attended, they make you sit through the press conference, or the screening of the movie, or whatever else that happens before feeding you. This time, Afdlin announces that food is ready and invites us to dig in, before the activities start.

I could see it was going to be a fracking GREAT night…..

…. and end up eating half the food on my plate only.

Now, see, I need to explain something. I love food. I love to eat. Heck, I’m from Penang, island of great and awesome food you can’t get anywhere else in Malaysia (must be the clean water supply we have). But when I’m at an event covering it, I seem to lose my appetite, and not because I’m nervous, but because I’m so into the job that I can never sit still. Oh, look, there’s famous actor A. Oh, famous actor A is having his photos taken. Better join the fun or I’ll never get paid for the article. Oh darn it the food’s all cold and gross now. I think I’ll have a dessert. Oh look, famous actor B and C just walked in, have to chase for quotes and photos.


Plus points of the night : Met Vanidah Imran (The Red Kebaya) and husband Rashidi Ishak (Cinta), Sharifah Amani and mom Fatimah Abu Bakar, and the awesome Gurmit Singh.

Gurmit Singh, otherwise known as Mr Phua Chu Kang from Singapore’s hit TV series “Phua Chu Kang”. (The poor guy will be forever known as Phua Chu Kang unless he runs off into strong movie roles soon, hence probably the factor why he’s wrapping up the TV series with one last season.). Gurmit kept the audience entertained with his comments on why he joined the cast of Sumolah “I would have done it for free, but I signed the contract already” and how appreciative he was of the opportunity to visit his ancestors land (this guy is so rojak, with Indian-Japanese-Chinese ancestry, that’s he’s just so cool).

Mr Gurmit also remembered me for a rather unfavourable but funny reason. To explain this, I need to go back the night before this event, to the “Cicakman” gala premier at Cathay Cineleisure:

I was in the hall with the celebrities and the stars before the screening of the movie, and was randomly taking shots of famous local celebs. After taking a few photos of Anita Sarawak (talk show host, singer), I suddenly see Gurmit Singh and Afdlin Shauki, and go hey! photo opportunity!, take a shot. I took one lousy shot. Ok, nevermind, try again. I take a half-decent shot. Then I waved to them and asked them if I could take one more, and that’s when my camera battery ran out. *smack camera* *switch off/on camera*. Camera (no I’m not going to name her Sally or something weird like some people do) then decides it would be funny to humiliate me in front of the stars and sputters a whirring sound before entering the black hole of non-functionality.

Gurmit and Afdlin burst out laughing. I shrug and gave a grin, mentally trying not to sink into the ground.

Picture of Afdlin Shauki & Gurmit Singh before my camera died

Anyway, back to Sumolah – I waved at Gurmit when he arrived and asked if I could take a photo. He somehow recognizes me and asks if I have new batteries for the camera, and I laugh and say yes. Then tells the nice BVI ladies (Anna, Shu Mei & Michelle) how my camera died the night before. *sigh*Ah well, better to be remembered for something funny rather than something bad. I give props to Gurmit Singh for being a patient and really funny and nice guy in person. Makes me think most people who aren’t even celebrities are snobs (I said most, not ALL), and could pick up a thing or two from this guy. Well actually, all the celebs I’ve met so far have been really nice and awesome to me, so no complaints there.

3 times during the night, I keep trying to get a few minutes with Afdlin, and someone always grabs him away. But what was awesome was when it was nearly the end, and another TV station wanted to grab him, he saw me and said he would talk to me first, and even later said sorry and thanked me for waiting the whole night! Had a quick 15 minute interview with him, took a few shots, and chatted for a bit. He gave me a bottle of some sacred sand from the sumo wrestling ring, which was cool.

Highlight of the night :- made new contacts, talked to nice people, and ran into my favourite journalist from The Star newspaper, Mumtaj Begum. This is a woman who’s such a great writer.

Not so great moment of the night :- Stepping in puddles with high heels, getting lost on the way to Puchong and ending up in Ampang at 11.30 pm at night.

Check out the pics from the Night of Stars from Sumolah.