The film director Dain Said speaks to theSun about his next film Interchange. Here is the full article
Headline: A Mystic Connection
By Bissme S
Dain Said was kind enough to show me some scenes from his
latest film, Interchange, which opens in cinemas at the end of the year. I believe Interchange is going to be an exciting film.
Dain first shot to stardom in 2007 when he directed Dukun,
a film loosely based on the life of the infamous Mona Fandey
who committed a gruesome murder. Unfortunately, Dukun
was never released here by the producers.
Putting this devastating incident behind him, in 2011, Dain went on to direct Bunohan, a thriller drama about an intense relationship among three brothers and their ailing father.
Bunohan paid off handsomely with the movie gaining screen
time at several prestigious international film festivals. It also earned Dain a number of accolades, including best director and best picture, at the 25th Malaysian Film Festival.
Now, everyone is eagerly awaiting his next film, Interchange. Made with a budget of RM3.5 million, Interchange centres on forensic photographer Adam (played by Iedil Putra), who becomes psychologically traumatised after having to photograph endless pictures of the dead.
Adam locks himself in his condominium and soon develops a habit of secretly taking pictures of his neighbours.
The beautiful Iva (played by award-winning Indonesian
actress Prisia Nasution), who has just moved into the
neighbourhood, catches him photographing her. Instead of
getting angry, she befriends him and becomes his lover.
Adam soon learns that loving Iva can be dangerous, and he
gets dragged into a world filled with blood and gore.
There is no doubt that featuring tortured souls on the big screen is not a new thing for Dain. Is the director a tortured soul like his characters?
Laughing, Dain said: “I seemed to possess some of
those characteristics when I was young. Most people would
like to believe that I am an extrovert. But I can also be an
introvert. When I was young, I loved reading stories featuring
characters [fraught] with intense angst. This kind of characters was far more interesting [compared to other characters].”
Interchange also stars another award-winning Indonesian actor Nicholas Saputra. The inclusion of these two Indonesian stars has led to some people insinuating that Dain does not have faith in Malaysian talents.
The director brushes this accusations aside. “One of the best things about our industry is our amazing actors,” he said.
“They can do their scenes in just one take. I have never doubted their talent.”
He explained that the plot features a tribal community from Borneo that speaks in an Indonesian dialect and hence, using Indonesian actors makes perfect sense.
The first time he met Prisia was in 2012, at the Asian Film
Festival in Macau. They became good friends instantly and
had always wanted to work together.
As for Nicholas, Dain has always been a big fan of his body of work, and felt it would be a wonderful challenge to direct this talented actor, who is known to be very picky about
his film roles.
Dain has played with mystic elements in all his previous
films, and he does the same in Interchange.
“There has always been mystic elements in my culture. Korean filmmakers have always taken a western genre, and injected their own culture into it. I am doing the same thing here.”
The inspiration for the film’s English title came when he was in Bangkok, doing the final editing for Bunohan.
He was staying at a residence right in the heart of the city, with
many tall condominiums in front of him and he could clearly see what was going on within the neighbours’ homes.
That sparked him to write the story for Interchange.
“This movie is about change,” Dain said.
“Every character goes through some kind of transformation.”
Dain’s ambition to be a filmmaker started from his childhood.
“I grew up playing in the beaches of the East Coast,” said Dain who was born in Tumpat, Kelantan.
His caretakers took him to traditional theatre performances such as wayang kulit, menora and mak yong, held on the beach.
At age seven, he followed his parents to live in Egypt and
England but the sweet memories of those stories on the beaches
of his homeland have always stayed with him.
“After 26 years abroad, I knew I wanted to come home
and tell Malaysian stories,” he said