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FINAS pleads for filming activities to continue despite MCO extension

The National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS) revealed that it has recently requested for the National Security Council (NSC) to give due considerations by allowing filming activities to be carried out in closed premises and studios - following  news that the Movement Control Order has been extended until 18 February.

According to its chairman Zakaria Abdul Hamid, the agency has already taken proactive steps by asking for flexibility from the NSC so that productions will be able to carry out and/or resume shoots in these MCO-enforced areas in order not to further affect the creative industry.

"We have sent a proposal paper on the standard operating procedures (SOP) for filming in the studio through the Content Development Division of the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia (KKMM). However, until now, we have not received any feedback from the NSC," he said.

Zakaria stated that they are well aware that the creative industry is driven by crews who mostly work part-time, and that MCO 2.0 has deeply impacted their source of income.

KKMM Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah visited a shooting location back in July last year

"The burden increases with the extension of the MCO 2.0. It will have a worse impact, affect income and could cripple the creative industry economy if filming activities are still not allowed to operate," he said.

The chairman added that productions have previously proven that they were able to abide by strict protocols while working during the previous Conditional Movement Control Order, saying that there was no COVID-19 cluster that occurred during filming.

"FINAS is optimistic about the authority of the government and the NSC in balancing the economic challenges and the ongoing health crisis. Therefore, we hope that the NSC can approve our request," he said.

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