AFTER national film awards ceremony Festival Film Malaysia (FFM)‘s major ordeal last month, Malaysian publishing house FIXI stepped in to fill a gap in recognition for local creatives. FIXI’s unofficial Anugerah Poster Film Terbaik however quickly gathered attention as it is currently the most significant award given in the field of movie poster design. Part of the award includes a cash prize of RM5,000.
Yesterday, a winner was chosen from 104 local films eligible for the prize: Shanjhey Kumar Perumal‘s much-beloved Jagat became the first ever Anugerah Poster Filem Terbaik winner. The film’s poster portrays Jagat’s protagonist, Appoy, in monochrome, with a pencil between his lips and an eraser in his hand.
Designed by director Shanjhey Kumar Perumal and designer Janagaraj Tiruvallluvan utilising a photograph by Sree Sonicimage, the poster intended to display Appoy’s stationary in a manner suggestive of smoking. Reaction on social media have been extremely positive, with many only realising the poster’s twist upon reading the jury citation on the award’s Facebook page.
The jury, comprising of Rewan Ishak, Ezrena Marwan and Teck Hee, collectively explained their choice on Facebook.
The gritty and filmic treatment of the whole visual is focused, simple yet with a twist. The boy looking badass (but with pencil & eraser). The juxtaposition is layered with meaning — it makes you look twice. That contrast makes you wonder what it’s all about. Curiosity makes you want to watch this film.The poster thus renders the complexities of the socio-political landscape of the movie and Malaysia.
Jagat beat out other nominees such as Bangunan, Boboiboy The Movie, Ola Bola, and Nota to name a few. In a separate vote by Malaysian cinema aficionados held on Facebook group Movie Addict, respondents chose Ola Bola for Best Poster but placed Jagat in second place.
Shanjhey thanked Fixi in a public posting and hoped his film will continue winning when it goes to FFM28 in a few days. Jagat has been nominated for a number of top honours at the awards ceremony, including Filem Terbaik, Lakon Layar Terbaik and Pengarah Terbaik. FFM28 — which last week produced a film screening programme after its name was brought into question — takes place this Saturday.
Founded in 2011 by filmmaker and author Amir Muhammad, local publishing house FIXI announced its inaugural Anugerah Poster Filem Terbaik earlier this month. Prior to this, national film awards ceremony FFM listed a category dedicated to movie posters until 2015, when it was removed without explanation.