ON 26 April 2016, the local film industry was rocked by a shocking reveal a letter sent by Gabungan Persatuan Karyawan Filem Malaysia (GAFIM) President Jurey Rosli to Communications and Multimedia Minister Mohd Salleh Tun Said Keruak regarding National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS) Director-General Kamil Othman.
The letter was a request for the ministry to monitor FINAS as “GAFIM” saw Kamil Othman unfit for his current role in FINAS, citing four main reasons. Industry backlash was impressive — film stars and industry leaders took to social media to express their support for Kamil, and lambasted Jurey for acting out on his own without consulting any of the associations under GAFIM.
GAFIM also lost at least five of its members; historically, it was the first mass exodus out of GAFIM.
In a press conference held yesterday, 4 May 2016, Jurey and Kamil together with FINAS Deputy Chairman Datuk Yusof Haslam came together to provide an update of the situation.
According to Dato Kamil, both he and Jurey had a private meeting last Sunday. They discussed matters brought up by Jurey in a civil manner and have come to a new understanding of one another. Claiming that both have been friends for many years, Dato Kamil urged members of the media and the public to let bygones be bygones, and continued to push forth his plans and ideas for FINAS in forthcoming months.
What other power is there in an NGO other than being a pressure group to the higher-ups?
– Jurey Rosli
Dato Jurey also admitted that he sent his grievance letter to the minister without full approval from all of GAFIM’s member associations. His defense was that it was that as president, he had the power to do what he feels is best, and what is needed for his association and it’s members.
When asked about the actual content of the letter — pertaining to Dato Jurey’s qualms about Dato Kamil running FINAS as a business — both parties declined to speak on the matter, agreeing that it wasn’t as important as the new understanding and possibilities available for FINAS and GAFIM to work together in order to solve issues that have been around for decades.
Dato Kamil also continued to stress that FINAS is currently undergoing a transformation in order to have the local film industry contribute to the nation as a financial commodity rather than merely being an entertainment outlet.
We are working on several things at the moment, such as trying to get the proper Intellectual Property (IP) acts in order so that the creatives can finally be able to own their work, and pass down their franchises to their kids and grandchildren. We have also been heavily working on training the younger generation through workshops and such in order to heighten the level of filmmaking technique in Malaysia.
– Kamil Othman
Jurey, who has helmed GAFIM for five years, also revealed that this will be his last term as President. A new candidate is known to be in line and should be revealed soon.