Diversity on Malaysia’s silver screen
IT’S the best Chinese New Year ang pow for Malaysian film-makers who produce movies in English, Mandarin, Cantonese and Tamil as, for the first time in the country’s history, these movies will now be regarded as Malaysian.
It means a lot because for the first time, there will be official recognition.
More importantly, these Malaysian movies will now enjoy a 20% entertainment tax rebate.
As Malaysian movies, they will get preference through the Compulsory Screening Scheme, which requires cinema operators to screen local films for 14 days.
Previously, a Malaysian movie that was not predominantly in Bahasa Malaysia was considered “foreign” unless 60% of its dialogue was in Bahasa Malaysia ““ even if it was Malaysian in terms of production, content and crew. But times have changed. There have been locally-made movies using Mandarin and other Chinese dialects, and some have won regional recognition and awards.