"The Dalang's Tale" wins the National category at the Asian Academy Creative Awards

Date Posted: 01 October 2021

The seven-minute animation revolves around the topic of domestic abuse told via wayang kulit
The seven-minute animation revolves around the topic of domestic abuse told via wayang kulit

1 Oct – The R&D Studio, a local animation production, has won an award at the Asian Academy Creative Awards.

Its Creative Director Irwan Junaidy recently went on social media to announce that their new short film, "The Dalang's Tale" became the 2021 National Winner for Best Short Form Content.

"Super excited to share the news that THE DALANG's TALE is the Malaysian winner for Best Short Form Content at the Asian Academy Creative Awards. It is even sweeter that another film in our Spectrum anthology, THE VISIT by Robot Playground is the Singaporean winner for the same category!" he wrote.

The story is told through visuals that resemble a wayang kulit performance.

"The Dalang's Tale" is part of the South-East Asian anthology called "Spectrum", along with six other animated shorts, and is produced by The R&D Studio (Malaysia) with Singapore's Robot Playground Media Pte. Ltd. Consisting of seven short films inspired by the shared heritage and culture of Malaysia and Singapore, the project is supported by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and Singapore's Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA).

"The Dalang's Tale" - told in seven minutes and 45 seconds - spreads awareness about domestic violence through the creative use of animated version of the wayang kulit.

In a previous interview with The Star, Irwan shared that he and his long-time collaborator Maizurah Abas came up for the idea for the short film as domestic abuse is not something that is talked about openly in the country.

"Both of us know people who are or were in abusive situations. And, one day, Mai asked me what I would do if I knew for sure that someone was being abused. Often, we are content to leave things abstract. We think that there is abuse, we see the signs but we don't talk about it. We keep it inside. So when the question came up, we were forced to think it. We ended up saying that we have to speak up when we know something is happening, " Irwan said.

Writer: Heidi Hsia

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