Saturday, May 26, 2007

See you in about 20 days, inshaallah!

wave goodbye
Originally uploaded by yasmin the storyteller
If all goes as planned, approximately nine hours from now, we would have left for Ipoh. With a smile on our face, and hope in our heart.

To those of you who have been supportive, I love you. I really do. You are God-sent, and you give me strength. To those who have not, well, I'll try to love you anyway. Because you make me cling to God even more tightly, and you make me want to try even harder.

Wish us well, my friends. Salaam.

Friday, May 25, 2007

"Muallaf". Some of the places we'll be shooting in.

The Majestic Hotel at Ipoh Railway Station, St. John's Church, and the State Mosque. These are just some of the places in and around which we'll be shooting the story of "Muallaf".

Incidentally, all the cast and crew will also be staying at the very old and exceedingly charming Majestic Hotel which, as you can see in the picture above, offers sprawling verandahs. Below, on the other hand, is a picture of the rustic but impeccable preserved St.John's church.
st.john's church, ipoh
The production heads, the set design / art direction department, the main cast and I will be heading for Ipoh first thing tomorrow morning.The plan is, six days of on-location rehearsal, with principal shooting beginning on Saturday, the 2nd of June.
state mosque, ipoh
With God's blessing, and your kind prayers, we should wrap by the 14th or 15th of June, inshaallah.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

"Muallaf". The private investigator, the datuk, and the datin.

We just had a few nights of rehearsal with the actors you see here.

Ho Yuhang, to me, is like Katherine Hepburn in his delivery of dialogue; he just says the lines and it works.

The great Rahim Razali is so talented, it's scary. I asked him to switch from fidgetty agitation to icy, motionless anger and he transformed from one to the other at the snap of a finger.

The very sexy Ning Baizura is so intelligent and articulate that she understands my suggestions of nuances instantly and instinctively.

And the best thing is, they're all such nice people who place the work above everything else.

I guess Stephen Frears was right when he said, "Talented people are usually easy to work with."

Alhamdulillah, so far we've always been blessed with such wonderful cast and crew.
rahim razaliNing Baizura

Sunday, May 20, 2007

"Muallaf". The tag lines.

Originally uploaded by yasmin the storyteller.
As always, I can't decide.

I now have three possible tag lines for "Muallaf", and I need your help in choosing one.

Granted you don't really know what the story is about, and I can't divulge too much for now. You're going to have to rely on the title and the synopsis for now.

1) Love heals.

2) Who can heal a heart that's broken?

3) It is by forgiving that we are forgiven.

Presently, I'm leaning towards the first tag line. It's short and it says something about Hope. What do you guys think?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

"Muallaf". Pics from a rehearsal, courtesy of Odeng.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

"Muallaf". The main protagonists and the script, photos courtesy of the immensely talented Faiz.

the main cast
Originally uploaded by yasmin the storyteller.
the script
The cast is fixed. The locations are fixed. The weave of the tale is getting tighter and tighter.

May Allah guide us. Ameen, ya rabbal aalameen.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

"Muallaf". Between Rohani and Audrey.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

The main cast of "Muallaf".

Brian Yap as Brian
Originally uploaded by yasmin the storyteller.
We've had three rehearsals so far. We're all terribly nervous, but bloody excited! And so far, as we keep rehearsing and adjusting the dialogue, chucking out some scenes and adding new ones, the story just keeps getting stronger. Alhamdulillah, rabbana walakal hamdu.
Tony Savarimutu as Brother AnthonySharifah Aleysha as AnaSharifah Amani as AniHazel Fernandez as Mrs SivaHaris Zakaria as Little Brian
Apart from Brian, going clockwise starting from top left, we have Tony Savarimutu who will play a Catholic priest called Brother Anthony, Sharifah Aleysha playing Ana, Sharifah Amani playing Ani, Hazel Fernandez playing Mrs Siva, and finally, my nephew Haris Zakaria playing Brian as a little boy.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

"Muallaf". A synopsis.

20-year old Rohani and her 14-year old sister Rohana are two Malay girls on the run from their wealthy, abusive father.

Finding refuge in a smaller town, their secret little world collides
with that of Robert Ng, a 30-year old Catholic school teacher.

The young man finds himself irresistibly drawn towards the sisters, and the extraordinary courage with which they face adversity, in a relationship that inevitably forces Robert to confront a haunting memory of his own troubled childhood.

In this story of lost souls who find comfort in each other, friendship opens the window to forgiveness and a reconciliation with the past.