FILM IN MALAYSIA: GHOST MOVIES, HISTORY AND PIRATED DVDs

FILM IN MALAYSIA

Bollywood films are very popular in Malaysia not only among the Indian community but also among Muslim Malays. People can catch them at theaters and at home on television and keep up with the love life of Bollywood actors in Malay-language gossip magazines. According to one study, three out five Malaysians watch Bollywood films on television. Not everyone likes them. Some conservative Islamic cleric regard them as a corrupting influence and want to see them banned or least their numbers restricted. One complained that the films could “arouse the viewers to unleash their desires even in their own children.’

The cinema of Malaysia revolves around a small film industry that dates back to the 1930s. At present, Malaysia produces about 20 feature films annually, and between 300–400 television dramas and serials a year apart from the in-house productions by the individual television stations. Malaysia also holds its own annual National Film Festival. There are about 250 movie theatres and cineplexes in Malaysia, showing not only local films but also foreign films. Foreign film producers are welcome to shoot on location in Malaysia, undertake film co-production ventures so that local artistes and technicians have the opportunity of gaining exposure and experience. [Source: Wikipedia]

In recent years, the success of popular ghost movies, action films and comedies has given a lift to Malaysia’s film industry. The number of local films in cinemas grew from just eight in 2000 to 49 in 2011 and ticket sales have quintupled in the past six years. In 2011, local movies collected more than 100 million ringgit ($32 million) in box office sales. [Source: Julia Zappei, AFP, March 20, 2012]

Controversy has not stopped Malaysian artists from addressing sensitive subjects. In 2011, a Malaysian-Chinese filmmaker released the racially provocative comedy "Nasi Lemak 2.0," which set box office records. [Source: Dustin Roasa, Los Angeles Times, April 8, 2012 ]

Film Censorship and Theater Rules

The Malaysian Film Censorship Board is known for cutting and censoring films under Home Ministry regulations which calls for it to “protect the interests of the country and the people from bad influences and negative elements shown in films.”

Schindler’s List was banned because it was regarded as Zionist propaganda. Daredevil was banned because it was deemed too violent and was said to encourage young people to “hero worship someone with a devil-sounding name.” The Prince of Egypt, an animation film about Moses, was banned because it was found to be “insensitive for religious reasons.” Babe was initially banned because it was described as offensive to Muslims who didn't eat pork. After pleas by a distributor the film was ultimately allowed to shown.

A series of Toyota car commercials with Brad Pritt was called “an insult to Asians” by the Malaysian government because using a non-Asian actor would “play to a sense of inferiority among Asians.’ Toyota ended up pulling the ads.

Swear words, love scenes and violent acts are routinely censored. A kiss between two women in The Hours was cut out. Sometimes the censorship board’s decision seem inconstistant. While the film Saving Private Ryan was banned because it was considered to gory, Final Destination 2, a horror film with graphic decapitations and impalements, was allowed to be shown. In some ways the issue of censorship is neither here nor there because so many people watch uncensored pirated DVDs.

No sex scenes and crimes are permitted. Malaysian film classification was introduced in 1996 to provide parents of minors a chance to prevent their children from being exposed to inappropriate materials. There are four 18+ categories used in Malaysia, unlike other countries, which only used one classification for each age, there are 18PA, 18PL, 18SG and 18SX, however, 18PA is rarely used. Movies prior to 1996 also carry ratings, and some of the local movies prior to 1996 later carry 18+ ratings. [Source: Wikipedia]

In March 2012, the Film Censorship Board of Malaysia released new colour-coded logo designs for cinema films' classification. U or 'Umum' is now blue, which meant that the film can be watched by all ages and consists of positive depictions of values. P13 or 'Penjaga 13' is yellow, which signifies that caution should be taken when watching the film as it is not suitable for individuals below 13 and any viewers of that age must be guided by a parent or guardian. 18 is red, which meant that the film is only suitable for viewers aged 18 and above as it contains images of violence, horror and sex, as well as religious, political and social elements. All those changes are effective starting 1 April 2012. [Source: Wikipedia]

The Kelantan Islamic government has also passed law banning excessive lipstick as an "early step towards fighting illicit sex." Lights are kept on during films in movie theaters to make sure no hanky panky goes on. Hotels have to build separate swimming pools for men and women.

Early History of Film in Malaysia

Malaysian cinema began in 1933 with Leila Majnun, based on a classical Persian story of two ill-fated lovers. Directed by B.S. Rajhans and produced by the Singapore-based Motilal Chemical Company of Bombay, the cast was derived from a local opera group. Observing the success of this project, two brothers, Run Run and Run Me Shaw, were prompted in 1937 to import some equipment from Shanghai and start the production of Malay films from their small studio at Ampas Road in Singapore. However, they only managed to produce five or six movies prior to the Japanese invasion in 1941. [Source: Wikipedia]

In 1941, when the Japanese occupied Malaysia, the first Japanese film companies found local film production to be extremely limited and noted that it was mainly an exhibition market dominated by "overseas Chinese" namely, the Shaw Brothers. Ironically, the Japanese would exploit Malaysia for exactly the same purposes even obtaining the help of the Shaws in order to break into their extensive Southeast Asian film exhibition network. Although Malaysia never became a major film production center under the Japanese, it was a strategically important film market for Japan and a convenient outpost for moving films into and out of Southeast Asia. The Japanese film studios shot a number of films in Shonan (what the Japanese renamed Singapore during the occupation) depicting the area as a sort of Japanese frontier. Films such as Southern Winds II, Tiger of Malay and Singapore All-Out Attack presented the area as a land rich in resources, occupied by simple but honest people, and highly exotic. Japanese colonial films also associated the region with sex as many "Karayuki-san", or prostitutes had been either sold to brothels or chosen to go to Southeast Asia to earn money around the turn of the century. Karayuki-san and Imamura Shohei's Whoremonger, which were all or at least partly shot on location, are examples of the extent to which this subgenre dominates the representations of Malyasia in Japanese cinema.

Following the end of World War II in 1945, the Shaw Brothers resumed production in 1947 with a Rajhans-directed film called Singapura Di Waktu Malam (Singapore by Night) starring Siput Sarawak. Backed by their chain of theatres, which they either owned or rented, the film enjoyed a good response. The Shaw Brothers proceeded to produce more films and introduced new faces, including the Sumatran-born Kasma Booty. Her first film, Cempaka, revolved around the life of a native island girl.

In 1948, P. Ramlee - who later became the living legend of the Malay film world, made his debut in the film Cinta (Love). P. Ramlee’s talents in music composing and singing brought him prominence. He was very versatile as a leading actor, a comic, dramatic artiste, scripwriter and film director. Most of the early films carried plenty of singing and dancing scenes, a trend introduced by the Indian film directors. After Rajhans, Shaw Brothers imported many other Indian film directors, among them S. Ramanathan, K.R. Seetharama Sastry, Phani Majumdar and D. Ghoss. There were also some local film directors such as L. Krishnan and K. M. Bashker who learned the trade and techniques through experience and apprenticeship. By the 1960s, many of the expatriates were replaced by local directors.

The success enjoyed by the Shaw Brother’s film studio, known as the Malay Film Productions (MFP), encouraged a few other entrepreneurs to venture into the same business. There was a Nusantara film company started. In 1951, Hsu Chiu Meng started the Nusantara film company. However, he depended heavily on independent theatres, and after producing about a dozen films Nusantara closed down in 1954.

In 1952, Ho Ah Loke opened a studio in Tampines Road, Singapore, calling his company Rimau Film Productions. After producing one film, he changed its name to Keris Film Productions. Ho owned a few small theatres through his earlier venture as a film distributor. He managed to produce a number of films, and in 1956 merged with Cathay Organisation, owned by millionaire Loke Wan Tho. The company was renamed Cathy-Keris Film Productions with its studio in East Coast Road, Singapore. Supported by their own theatre chain throughout Malaya and Singapore, Cathay-Keris films posed a challenge to the films produced by Shaw’s MFP studios. Shaw studios produced about ten films a year, while Cathay-Keris too produced about the same number.

During those early years, all the films were in black and white. The studios had their own laboratories, recording and editing facilities. Direct sound recording was the practice from the beginning, until the advent of the 1960s. Then, post-synching or dubbing system appeared and is still in use until today. The screenplays were mostly based on folk tales, stage plays, legends of fictional or real historical heroes or events. MFP made the movie about the legendary Malacca warrior Hang Tuah who lived during the heyday of the Malacca Sultanate. In response, Cathay-Keris produced Hang Jebat who was Hang Tuah’s closest friend but due to unfortunate circumstances became involved in a life-or-death struggle with him. Hang Tuah, done in Eastman Color, was directed by Indian director Phani Majumdar, who was specially brought in to ensure that the film made it to the East Asia Film Festival. P. Ramlee acted as Hang Tuah and also composed the background music, for which the film won an award.

Just before they ceased operations, both MFP and Cathay-Keris produced three colour films each. Shaw Brothers’ produced Ribut (Storm), Hang Tuah and Raja Bersiong (The Fanged King). The latter, a legend from the state of Kedah, was written by Malaysia’s first Prime Minister, the late Tunku Abdul Rahman. Cathay-Keris produced Buluh Perindu (The Magic Flute), Cinta Gadis Rimba (The Virgin Of Borneo) and Mahsuri (The Maid of Langkawi), another Kedah legend written by Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra.

Although many companies emerged, such as Nusantara Films, Tan & Wong Film Company, Rimau Productions and Cathay-Keris, many closed down due to escalating production costs and diminishing audiences, leaving only MFP and Cathay-Keris both operating in Singapore. In 1961, H.M. Shah bought over a piece of prime land on the fringe of Kuala Lumpur and turned it into Merdeka Studio. It had a meager beginning, but once the top stars started their exodus from the two Singapore studios, its growth surged dramatically. Located adjacent to the National Zoo on Hulu Kelang Road, is 13 kilometres from the city. Today, it is the headquarters of the National Film Development Corporation, Malaysia (FINAS). The Shaw Brothers dispatched some of their Singapore film directors, among them L. Krishnan, P. Ramlee and Salleh Ghani, Jamil Sulong, Omer Rojik, S. Kadarisman, Sudarmaji, Naz Achnas, M. Amin and Datuk Jins Shamsudin, to make films at Merdeka.

Later History of Film in Malaysia

In 1975, a renaissance prompted a revitalised growth when Sabah Films grossed huge profits with its maiden offering, Keluarga Comat (Comat’s Family). Soon, other companies mushroomed, such as Perfima, Syed Kechik Productions, Indra film Productions, Jins Shamsudin Production and others. [Source: Wikipedia]

The 1980s saw numerous changes. A vital one was the setting up of the National Film Development Corporation of Malaysia in 1981 to develop and stimulate the growth and maintain the standards of the film industry by various means, including the provision of research and advisory services. FINAS has since set up numerous facilities to promote the industry, including a credit facility scheme which enables young and untiring film-makers to test their potential. The revival in the industry also made changes to certain formats of the local film productions. Nearly all the films were made in colour, some using the scope format and some the standard format. There were no fixed salaries for artists attached to a certain company or studio. A company can only do two of three functions: production, distribution or exhibition in order to avoid a monopoly by a certain party. The producers also might be able to recover part of their investment by the return of the entertainment tax as a way of incentive. A further incentive to local film-makers is that they are invited to make television programmes either in film format or video format. As a result, there are now more than 300 film companies registered with FINAS.

In 1989 and 1990, over 20 feature films were produced, that was later decreased significantly, however, 15 feature films were made in 1995, with only one film that was not shown in cinemas, compared to only five feature films made in 1985. In the mid-2000s, Malaysian film industry saw an increase in number of domestic film production, from only seven films in 1999, to 26 films in 2009. The increase of domestic film production is because of new opening of cinemas and limitation to screening of foreign films in local cinemas. Currently, Malaysian film industry faces competition from surrounding regional cinemas such as Indonesian Cinema, Siamese Cinema, Philippines' Cinema and Indian Cinema as it has failed to come up with quality content films.

In 2007, Tan Chui Mui Director of Love Conquers All, It won a Tiger Award at the 36th International Film Festival Rotterdam. In 2008, Liew Seng Tat Director of Flower in the Pocket, It won a Tiger Award at the 37th International Film Festival Rotterdam. In 2011, over 40 films were released in Malaysia. In 2012, National Film Development Corporation Malaysia had cooperated with Skim Wajib Tayang to allow 2 local films to be screened at local cinemas every weeks, effective in May 24, in order to solve the delay of screening faced by local film industry. As such, in 2012, there are 70 films queuing up to be pictured in Malaysia nationwide.

Highest-Grossing Malaysia Films and Films Shot in Malaysia

Highest-grossing Malaysia film as of 2012 (Rank, Movie, Year, Studio, Nett Gross (RM): 1) KL Gangster, 2011, Skop Production, 11.74 million; 2) Ombak Rindu, 2012, Astro Shaw, 10.90 million; 3) Hantu Bonceng, 2011, Excellent Pictures, 8.53 million; 4) Ngangkung, 2010, MIG Production, 8.18 million; 5) Kongsi, 2011, MIG Production, 8.09 million; 6) Khurafat, 2011, Skop Production, 8.08 million; 7) Hantu Kak Limah Balik Rumah, 2010, Tayangan Unggul, 7.90 million; 8) Adnan Sempit, 2010, MIG Production, 7.66 million; 9) Ah Beng: Three Wishes, 2012, The Film Engine, 7.55 million; 10) Nasi Lemak 2.0, 2011, Prodigee, 7.00 million;. As for local Chinese films, Ah Beng: Three Wishes is the highest grossing Chinese film in Malaysia, with the number of RM7,559,830. [Source: Wikipedia]

Films shot in Malaysia: 1) Among the Great Apes with Michelle Yeoh; 2) Anna and the King; 3) Ayan (film); 4) Beyond Rangoon; 5) Don 2; 6) Entrapment (film); 7) Love Mein Ghum; 8) Police Story 3: Super Cop; 9) Sell Out!; 10 ) Shaadi Se Pehle; 11) The Sleeping Dictionary; 12) Thunderbolt (1995 film); 13) The Viral Factor; 14 ) Yaadein (2001 film).

Anna and the King of Siam was filmed in Malaysia. See Thailand

Malaysian Horror and Ghost Films

Julia Zappei of AFP wrote: “Haunted highways, an oil-smeared ghost prowling villages for virgins and vampiress spirits thirsting for blood: Malaysia has an obsession with the supernatural rooted in age-old legends. Now that obsession is increasingly being projected on the nation's cinema screens, with horror movies emerging as a force to be reckoned with in a booming domestic film industry. But this wasn't always the case. Horror films were effectively banned for three decades in the Muslim-majority country for celebrating the other-worldly in violation of Islamic teachings.

But since the retirement of strongman premier Mahathir Mohamad in 2003 there has been a modest relaxation in the acceptable limits of popular culture -- and horror movies appear to have risen from the dead. [Source: Julia Zappei, AFP, March 20, 2012 >>>]

"Malaysian filmmakers suddenly realised there is a lot of money to be made in horror films... so they jumped on the bandwagon," said Andrew Hock Soon Ng, a film expert with the Malaysia campus of Australia's Monash University. "However modern we are, we are still very much regulated by our traditional belief systems," Ng said. Malays were animist before Islam's 15th-century arrival, but belief in the existence of spirits separable from physical forms and black magic still persist. >>>

Ahmad Idham said two of his own crew became hysterical while filming one of his several fright films, and when a stuntman died in an accident on one of his sets some members of the crew blamed supernatural forces. He now takes "precautions" when shooting, such as praying to Allah and seeking guidance from his uncle, an Islamic spiritual healer.

Mahathir, still an influential conservative voice, last year called such films a bad influence that generated panic. The National Fatwa Council, which issues Islamic edicts, called them "counter-productive to building a developed society." In "Ghost Pillion Rider," for example, the reckless motorcycle-racing protagonist repents, becoming more religious and responsible.Such pressure stunts a promising homegrown genre that faces competition from imported Hollywood and other foreign blockbusters, and challenges directors who need to "think beyond" the conventional to expand their art, said Ahmad Idham. "It's quite difficult... to explore new things. As a filmmaker you have to think beyond. But when you start to think beyond, people cannot catch up," he said.

See Separate Article GHOSTS, FOLK BELIEFS AND SUPERSTITIONS IN MALAYSIA

Popular Ghost Movies in Malaysia

Julia Zappei of AFP wrote: “Three of Malaysia's six top-grossing films are fright flicks made in 2010 and 2011, and the genre made up more than a third of domestic movies in 2011. Horror films have struck a chord because they reflect the country's village culture and the traditional superstitions that trouble Malay hearts, says director Ahmad Idham Ahmad Nazri. "Horror movies are the type that will be close to our culture," said the director of 2011 box-office hit "Ghost Pillion Rider," about a motorcycle speedster haunted by the spirit of a girl who died aboard his bike. [Source: Julia Zappei, AFP, March 20, 2012]

Malaysia's highest grossing horror movie ever -- and its third-biggest overall -- Ghost Pillion Rider collected 8.53 million ringgit, around 3 million ringgit less than the record-setting action film "KL Gangster" from the same year. a 30-year lull in Malaysia -- censors stopped approving scary movies as Islamic sentiments rose in the 1970s -- "Fragrant Night Vampire" hit screens in 2004. The film is about a "pontianak" or vampiress spirit -- a recurring Malay legend and movie subject. It was a huge hit at home and even won accolades abroad.

A recurring Malaysian character is the "orang minyak," or "oily man," an elusive bogeyman smeared in black oil who hunts for virgins to rape. It was immortalised in 1958's "Curse of the Oily Man" by the late P. Ramlee, Malaysia's most celebrated filmmaker, and There has been no fatwa or any hint of a new ban, but like all Malaysian movies, horror films are policed by the Film Censorship Board. It orders objectionable scenes cut and positive messages inserted, such as Islam winning out in the end over the supernatural.

Sepet

"Sepet" (2004) Sepet is a romantic comedy drama film set in Ipoh, Malaysia. Released in the U.S. under the name “Chinese Eye,” it is written and directed by Yasmin Ahmad and stars Choo Seong Ng, Sharifah Amani and Linus Chung. It tells a tale of a love that blooms between a Chinese boy and a Malay girl and looks at how two young lovers from totally different background cope with family and social pressure. The film was shot in Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia on an estimated budget of MYR 1,000,000. Sepet is a Malay word which, in this context, refers to the 'slit eyes' of the Chinese. [Source: IMDB, Wikipedia]

Nineteen-year old Ah Loong (who also called himself "Jason") is in charge of a stall selling pirated VCDs. Contrary to the stereotype of his social standing, Ah Loong is an incurable romantic with an unlikely hobby: He loves to read and write poetry. Quite content with being the Romeo of the slums, Ah Loong's life takes a sudden turn one day when a Malay schoolgirl, Orked, arrives at his stall while looking for films starring her favorite actor Takeshi Kaneshiro. Love blossoms between Orked and Ah Loong, although there are social and racial pressures that stand in their way.

In the end, Ah Loong is involved in a motor vehicle accident while Orked is going to England to pursue her studies. It is not clear if he lived or died until the sequel, Gubra which shows that Jason really did die. After the credits finish rolling however, Orked is shown wearing a wedding ring sleeping beside Jason, who also has a wedding ring. In Mukhsin, Jason and the adult Orked are shown to be living together. However, the adult Orked is not called by her name in this scene as the young Orked is.

Awards: 1) Best Film, 18th Tokyo International Film Festival 2005; 2) Best Asian Film Award, Ninth Malaysian Video Awards; 3) Best Film, 27th Créteil International Women's Film Festival in France; 4) Best Film, Best Original Screenplay (Yasmin Ahmad), Best Poster, Best Supporting Actress (Ida Nerina), Most Promising Actor (Ng Choo Seong), Most Promising Actress (Sharifah Amani), 18th Malaysian Film Festival; Best Film, , Global Chinese Golden Arts Awards.

Film Pirating in Malaysia

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, pirated versions of Hollywood movies sold for about $1.50 on the streets of Kuala Lumpur, often before they are released in the theaters. According to the International Intellectual Property Alliance, Malaysia was the No. 2 source of pirated videos and DVDs after China in the late 1990s.

Most of the pirated discs were made from preview copies or camcorder master discs at optical disc factories that can produce hundreds of thousands of discs an hour. The distribution system was so sophisticated that discs were available at markets all over the country soon after they were manufactured.

An estimated nine out of every ten VCDs and DVDS sold in the late 1990s were pirated. The practice also is believed to be the main reason that 219 movie screens were forced to close in the late 1990s. Anti-piracy laws that gave authorities the authority to seize DVD-making machines helped reduce piracy somewhat.

Malaysia was placed on a U.S. watchlist on piracy. In the mid 2000s, it dramatically stepped up efforts to rein in copyright pirates as it negotiated a free-trade pact with Washington.

Malaysia Sniffer Dogs Trained to Find Pirated DVDs

Two dogs trained to sniff out DVDs received medals from the Malaysian government on Monday for a five-month campaign that crippled movie pirates. Reuters reported: “Lucky and Flo, black Labradors trained to detect the chemicals used in making DVDs, were the first animals to receive the outstanding service awards for finding discs stockpiled by pirates, the Motion Picture Association of America said in a statement. The canine campaign led to 26 arrests and seizures of illegal discs worth over $6 million. "The dogs have proven to be a major asset in our fight against the pirates and we intend to continue what Lucky and Flo have set in motion," S Veerasingam, Malaysia's deputy minister for domestic trade and consumer affairs, said in the statement. [Source: Reuters, August 21, 2007 ++]

“The success of Lucky and Flo has prompted the ministry to set up its own canine unit to fight the pirates, and the MPAA, which arranged for their trial by Malaysian officials, plans to donate two new dogs to the unit by the end of the year. Movie pirates even put a bounty of 100,000 ringgit ($28,560) on Lucky and Flo after they busted a fake DVD ring in southern Johor state in March, the MPAA said. Since then, the dogs have been closely guarded. Lucky and Flo's next stop on their crime-fighting tour is a visit to New York, followed by a trip to Toronto for an appearance at a film festival, said the MPAA, which groups six major Hollywood film companies. ++

After Lucky and Flo lead investigators to a hidden stash worth more than $430,000, Reuters reported: The “two black Labradors sniffed out at least 150,000 discs in a secret compartment in a shop in Kuala Lumpur after anti-piracy officials, acting on a tip-off, raided the place but failed to find anything, the New Sunday Times said. "They decided to call in the canine brigade," it said. "Within minutes, the two Labrador retrievers sniffed out the hidden discs in a room that could only be accessed by the push of a button hidden under a plug outlet." [Source: Reuters, March 31, 2007 <^>]

“Local media say movie pirates have put a bounty on the dogs after the hounds busted a fake DVD ring in February 2007 in the southern state of Johor, sniffing out about $3 million worth of movie and game discs in their first major successful operation. Authorities say they are treating the threat seriously and have beefed up security around Lucky and Flo. The dogs are being trialled by Malaysian domestic-trade officials in a joint effort with the Motion Picture Association, which groups six major Hollywood film companies. <^>

Bollywood Actor Shah Rukh Khan 'Knighted' in Malaysia

In January 2008, Bollywood movie icon Shah Rukh Khan flew India to Malaysia be awarded the nation's equivalent of a knighthood. AFP reported: Khan was presented with an award from Malacca which carries the title "Datuk", equivalent to a British knighthood, after a 2001 film which was set in the southern state boosted its profile as a tourist destination. The actor was decked in a gold and black traditional Malay outfit for the ceremony, which was attended by more than 500 invited guests. The crowd -- including the wives and teenaged children of diplomats and politicians -- shrieked his name and mobbed the star. [Source: AFP, January 2008 +/+]

“The 42-year-old heartthrob is well-loved in Malaysia, where Indian films have a huge following among ethnic Indians, majority Muslim-Malays and the ethnic Chinese community as well. "It is a wonderful honor, it is very, very prestigious for me and... for all the people who act in films in my country," Khan told reporters. "When you are an actor, you truly believe that the language that you speak can be truly international and go across boundaries and bring hope especially in today's time and age, when the world is full of strife." +/+

“Khan was taken on a tour of Malacca's tourist attractions before meeting thousands of fans. "I love Shah Rukh. I got especially dolled up for him today and even though I am an ethnic Chinese, I really enjoy watching Hindi movies with Shah Rukh in them," said 22-year-old Chia Hooi Ling who attended the ceremony. The award drew some controversy, with politicians questioning whether local artists should be recognised instead. +/+

“But fans were thrilled by the visit, which drew a large crowd of citizens, tourists and trishaw riders with Hindi movie songs blaring on their radios -- all hoping for a glimpse of the legend in the flesh. "It is a dream come true for me. I traveled from Kuala Lumpur to see him and I managed to take a picture with him," said Siti Asmah Abdullah, a 21-year-old university student. "He's lovely and very charming. Even my grandmother is in love with him," said Angelica Das, 16, who waited for hours to see him. For local trishaw driver, Abu Mat Kassim, Khan's presence in the state -- where he filmed "One 2 Ka 4" -- meant a boost for his business. "Look at how much he has done to make Malacca famous," he said. "We love him and we are proud to have this fabulous star as a Malaccan Datuk." +/+

Image Sources:

Text Sources: New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Times of London, Lonely Planet Guides, Library of Congress, Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board, Compton’s Encyclopedia, The Guardian, National Geographic, Smithsonian magazine, The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek, Reuters, AP, AFP, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, The Economist, Foreign Policy, Wikipedia, BBC, CNN, and various books, websites and other publications.

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© 2008 Jeffrey Hays

Last updated June 2015

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