Heading to Fukuoka

The cast and crew will be flying off to Fukuoka, Japan this Friday night arriving Saturday morning. Everyone's excited and ready to go. It's going to be an intense 8-day filming in various locations around the city including with the University rikishi.

posted by zona marie @ 1:10 PM, ,

Want to be an extra?

The cast and crew are on a short three day break this weekend, from the gruelling month of work. It's a well deserved break and time to recouperate for everyone. We resume shoot at Boleh Sushi set in Bandar Puteri on Tuesday, with Sai returning from Bangkok for another week of filming with us, before everyone heads off to Fukuoka, Japan come July 28th for the 8-day filming.

If anyone's interested in becoming an extra on the film - WE WANT YOU! We've got a huge scene where we need 1000 extras to watch a Sumo Tournament. So, leave us a message here with your email!

p.s. this is not the same role given away as the Celcom contest.

posted by zona marie @ 1:47 AM, ,

Not wrestling, Sumo-lah!

What's going to be exciting about watching Sumolah later once it's out in cinemas coming December 2006, is actually getting to watch the actors in the mawashi, complete Sumo wrestling loincloths! And performing the Sumo in as realistic as possible amateur tournament style. Afdlin and a few of the crew had gone to Fukuoka late last year to actually do some research including attend a real Sumo tournament and wrestle with real rikishi (wrestlers) at the university.

From that experience, they came back and began learning and rehearsing sumo with the Malaysian Sumo Association. So everything you'll be watching, will be as real as it gets. Including the mawashi which was bought and imported from Japan.

Here are photos from the filming of a scene of the Diamond Sushi team practicing sumo in their snazzy gym.

Hassan (Terry Gallyot) being dressed up with the mawashi.

Akira (Gurmit Singh), all ready to go.

Hassan (Terry) & Mickey (Gavin Yap) ready with their shiko.

posted by zona marie @ 11:12 PM, ,

The Unsung Heroes

...and here are some of the crew members without whose tireless dedication, none of us would look any good.
In no particular order:

Artiste Liaison Manager Anne, Wardrobe Asst Aida, & Line Producer Zona Marie

Artiste Liaison Assistant Shuki & Propsmaster Wek

2nd Assistant Director Shima

Wardrobe Mistress & Make-up Artist Shada

Official Photographer Acai

2nd Director Michihiro Kubota & Location Manager (Japan) Tomoko Kubota

Assistant Cameraman & Focus Puller Badri

Wardrobe Pilot & Assistant Awang

Set Production Assistant Dayak

Director of Photography Helmi Yusof

1st Assistant Director O

Lighting crew Wan

Set Production Assistant Risz

Make-up Artist Jerry

Production Pilot Tam

Production Pilot Nordin

Sai's mum & manager, Supaporn with Sai's Language coach Bront

Art Director Chriz & Production Designer Paul

posted by Ben Tan @ 2:04 AM, ,

Flawless Diamonds

I am Tadano. Owner of the glorious Diamond Sushi. My brilliant team will be fighting against that of the pathetic Boleh Sushi owned by Honda (Patrick Teoh). If you asked me, they sound more like Tak Boleh Sushi. They haven't a chance against my boys. Akira (Gurmit Singh) is my son and together with Mickey (Gavin Yap) and Hassan (Terry Gallyot), we will kick-ass at the tournament.

posted by Ben Tan @ 10:27 PM, ,

Diamond Sushi team's first night out

The opposing team that will fight against Boleh Sushi's Ramlee, Haris and Andy is the mean, nutty and obnoxious Diamond Sushi team played by Gurmit Singh as Akira, Terry Gallyot as Hassan and Gavin Yap as Mickey; and headed by Ben Tan as Tadano and Akira's father.

Last nite was the first time the three got together for their appearance in the film. We shot at True Fitness USJ Taipan, who were our kind location sponsors, from 7am until 9am this morning! It was a mad but fun filming the night out.

Kudos to the dedicated film crew and amazing cast for being so patient and professional despite everyone's tiredness keeping up. We'll be moving back into the Boleh Sushi set on Tuesday morning for the next two-three weeks!

Here's a sneak peak video of the Diamond Sushi team in training.

Yeah, that's Gavin in the mohawk... tsk.

posted by zona marie @ 11:32 AM, ,

Get a part on Sumolah! Celcom contest

Want a part in Sumolah? Join teh Sumolah Celcom SMS competition by typing "SUMOLAH" then send it to "27777". You stand a chance to win cool handphones and a walk on role with Afdlin Shauki, Phua Chu Kang's Gurmit Singh, Inthira Charoenpura and the whole Sumolah cast. Or maybe even win a chance to go on our film shoot to Fukuoka, Japan!
Contest runs until 15 July!

More details at the Celcom site. Or http://wap.celcom.com.my/

posted by zona marie @ 2:21 AM, ,

Behind the Scenes, sneak peak videos

Boleh Sushi - Siti and Akira

Boleh Sushi - Ramlee, Siti & Akira

posted by zona marie @ 2:59 AM, ,

Boleh Sushi, homemade sushi restaurant

If you've read up Sumolah's story synopsis, you'd realise that alot of our scenes are placed in a homey family run sushi restaurant run by Honda (Patrick Teoh) and his daughter, Siti (Sai). This is where Ramlee (Afdlin) ends up working and gets conned into joining their sumo wrestling team.

As most of our key scenes will be shot in Boleh Sushi, it was such a headache for our team to look for a location suitable for the film. We sought and bargained with people of existing Japanese sushi restaurants. But of course, no one would let us shut down their business to let us shoot in their premises for more than two weeks! We'd have to buy out their business lah like that! So we went for the choice of building a sushi restaurant from scratch!

Seeking all over town, we rented out a new shop lot unit in Bandar Puteri Puchong, near Giant Supermarket which was the perfect location for us. A corner lot which could look like three shops in a row.

The idea initially was to put two more shops beside Boleh Sushi on the left and right, for some of the film's story set ups. We'll also build up some mamak stalls for a few scenes later on.

So this is what the place looks like BEFORE. And who was left in charge to make a miracle out of this lot in FOUR short days? Paul Hasham was our film's set builder. First time building anything for a film, and previously only having ever built sets for theatre and real homes, this was his craziest moments, I bet! Hahah.. FOUR days. His deadline was insane.

And this is the result AFTER---

When I walked into the restaurant the first time on Sunday...

OMG. I really felt like it was a real restaurant. You wouldn't have guessed that behind the plywood panellings from the outside, that this was a bonafide Sushi restaurant! Art Department boleh!

So Sunday was pre-light day, where the crew got themselves busy adjusting to how the cameras are going to move about for today's scenes. And they started rigging up the lights.

This is Boleh Sushi! We even have the signage for it! Innit cool?! ^_^ Even the uniforms of the cast as staff of the restaurant has cool patches sewed on. Remind me to get pics of that later.

Today's scene was the re-opening of Boleh Sushi, hence all the flowers. It's a big scene with all the cast in it - Afdlin, Inthira @ Sai, Gurmit, Awie, Radhi Khalid, Kartina Aziz, Ben Tan, Sabrina Hassan, Chichi & Mohd Afif (the little boy from PGL the Musical).

The camera on a track, inside Boleh Sushi.

The crew, taking it easy in between takes.

Boleh Sushi's exterior.

If you happen to be in the Bandar Puteri neighbourhood, and see these massive lights and generator vans outside, you know its the Sumolah crew... We'll be there til late July.

posted by zona marie @ 2:16 AM, ,

More production photos

More photos up for you guys to check out... I've already got em pro photos in CD now. I just need some time to sort them out before I can post them here. Meantime, enjoy...

Ramlee (Afdlin) with his Mak (Kartina Aziz) in their home in Kg Baru.

Mummy confronts Ramlee, for being 30 and jobless!

We blocked off a busy street in Cyberjaya to set up the opening scene of Ramlee weaving through traffic on his motorbike.

2nd Director, Michihiro, pretending to make sushi...

Afdlin and the crew, during pre-lighting set up at the Boleh Sushi Restaurant.

Afdlin and crew, outside Boleh Sushi, doing a run through of the scenes that will be shot the next day.

Tomoko writing out in Japanese some of Boleh Sushi's menu.

Patrick Teoh, waiting his cue outside Boleh Sushi.

Just amusing himself, watching a surprise guest enter Boleh Sushi during a scene.

Sai & Gurmit with the crew and make-up, in between shots.

Recording clapper board...

Sai, Gurmit & Afdlin in action.

posted by zona marie @ 1:55 AM, ,

Sumolah - the story

What would happen if a hotheaded and unambitious Malay man was forced to enter the rigourous and challenging world of sumo? Would he give up on the trials and tribulations he finds himself committed to? Or will his relationship with the father-figure he never had create a purpose for him to rise above the challenges and endeavour to do his best?

Story Synopsis
Ramlee (Afdlin Shauki) is a down and out Malay boy who can’t seem to hold down a job, much to his Mother’s (Kartina Aziz) disappointment. Out of a job and out of money, he stumbles across a challenge by sushi restaurant owner Honda (Patrick Teoh) to “eat all you can for free food – within a time limit”.

Hungry and desperate, Ramlee attempts the challenge, and fails. In compensation, Honda lets Ramlee take a job at the restaurant to pay off his due. Ramlee becomes a member of the Boleh Sushi shop staff, along with Harith (Awie) and Andy (Radhi Khalid).

Ramlee is immediately attracted to Honda’s beautiful daughter, Siti (Intira Charoenpura), who is half-Japanese and half-Malay. He begins to learn the meaning of having good work, good friends and family.

One day he learns that part of his obligation is to take part in the Malaysian Sushi Association Amateur Sumo Wrestling Championships held by the local Japanese owners of sushi restaurants.

Whilst taking part in the initial friendly bout, Akira (Gurmit Singh), Siti’s ex-boyfriend, humiliates him in public. It is only after that that Ramlee finds out that he had been tricked into working for Boleh Sushi because Honda was desperate for a third member for their team.

Ramlee has to make a choice – whether to stay on and fight for Boleh Sushi in the upcoming Championships, or to give up on his new-found family.

posted by zona marie @ 10:34 PM, ,

Production Photos

Hey'all! I've got some photos 'ere, finally, from my camera tho. I'm still trying to some more 'pro' pics from the official photographer ^_~ In the meantime, enjoy.

Afdlin as Ramlee, on the first day of Principal Photography.

One of our office sets is a funeral parlour. It was weird having to write a letter requesting for 4 coffins. Heheh...

Ramlee and the funeral parlour boss.

At Kepong Metropolitan Park.

2nd AD, Shima, at the monitors.

Inthira Charoenpura as Siti, looks gorgeous on screen.

Afdlin & Shima at the monitors.

Ramlee in his "Boleh Sushi" restaurant uniform.

Inthira with 2nd Director, Michihiro Kubota.

Crane shot from outside Ramlee's house.

posted by zona marie @ 8:30 PM, ,