26 Jul – The BMW Shorties, Malaysia's most prestigious and longest-running short film competition by BMW Group Malaysia, premiered "RAHASIA" – a BMW-funded film by 2022 Grand Prize Winner, Syahmi Norsan.
Backdropped against the picturesque landscape of Carey Island in Malaysia, the movie beautifully grapples with the complex themes of identity, family and legacy that are deeply rooted in the ancient Mah Meri tribe.
The film combines intricate storytelling with compelling visuals to portray how life in the city has distanced the main character, Samri from his Mah Meri roots and estranged father. When he learns of his brother's deteriorating health, Samri is forced to return and face everything he had been running away from all his life.
Said Syahmi, "Bringing this short film to life was no easy feat as we found ourselves head-to-head with challenges at every step of the production process – from building a rapport with the tribal folk, and gaining their trust to not only navigate on their sacred lands but to also be comfortable enough to share their stories with us, to making sure that we represent them well especially on a global stage. I am grateful to have been given this opportunity by the BMW Shorties and I hope to see more Malaysian filmmakers like myself utilise this platform to lift each other up in today's increasingly challenging landscape."
Sashi Ambi, Head of Corporate Communications and Sustainability at BMW Group Malaysia said, "RAHASIA is a visually mesmerising film with an equally gripping narrative that showcases Malaysia in a whole new light. Much like our goal with the BMW Shorties to provide a platform for undiscovered voices to be heard, Syahmi's work has given one of Malaysia's oldest indigenous tribes the recognition they deserve. These are values we hold strongly in BMW Group Malaysia, where Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is at the forefront of our culture across the organisation."
Sashi added, "To this day, it truly never not ceases to amaze me what our grand prize winners bring to the table year after year, as they exemplify the new generation of filmmakers that will ultimately shape the future of Malaysian cinema."
This year, the annual BMW Shorties Awards Night will be held in conjunction with the 6th Malaysia International Film Festival (MIFFest), in line with their shared commitment to celebrating Malaysian cinema art alongside international works.
The 6th Malaysia International Film Festival will run from 23 to 28 July 2023 in various locations across the city with a line-up of programmes throughout the week, including film screenings, masterclasses and networking opportunities.