4 Jan – Singaporean filmmaker Tan Pin Pin has decided to pull her movie "Singapore GaGa" from the upcoming Singapore Film Festival in Kuala Lumpur organised by Titian Budaya.
The 2005 movie has been deemed a "security threat" by Malaysia's Film Censorship Board, according to a post on Tan's Facebook.
The movie could "create doubts and restlessness" among citizens, all due to its inclusion of the word "animals" in the Malay language in one of its scenes.
It was revealed by Tan that the organisers' appeal to the Chief Censor was rejected last week.
Tan posted a translated quote from the censor's report: "Erase (Victor Khoo) saying "animals" in Malay and delete the subtitles of "animals" which has a double meaning.
This goes against the film Censorship guidelines Ministry of home affairs Part II:2.1.1 (v) Dialogue can create doubt and restlessness among citizens and finally may cause a security threat, disturbance of public peace and national defense."
The scene in question depicts the late Singaporean entertainer Victor Khoo and his ventriloquist act Charlee, where he teased the kids by calling them animals in Malay.
Tan has decided to keep the movie intact instead of editing it, and has withdrawn the movie from the event.
Her decision to keep the movie as it is has been lauded by many, including the late entertainer's own son, Brandon Khoo, who commented on her Facebook post, thanking her for not removing the section.
This was not the first time for the movie to be aired in Malaysia, as it was also previously screened in 2006, though there were no censorships applied to it at the time.
"Singapore GaGa" was supposed to screen for the Singapore Film Festival by Titian Budaya taking place this 14 to 17 January at selected GSC cinemas.
The festival is part of the Titian Budaya programme, which is held since 21 November 2015 to 17 January 2016 in celebration of 50 years of friendship between Singapore and Malaysia.