Zakaria (third left) with (from left) Ahmad Idham and Norman mingling with the local creative industry players after the dialogue session. Photo: Mohd Alif Noni

KUCHING: The National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (Finas) is implementing a six-month short-term plan encompassing various initiatives to ensure that the creative industry recover from the movement control order imposed to contain the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Finas chairman Zakaria Abdul Hamid said the corporation had acquired approval for a standard operating procedure (SOP) for filming activities and cinema viewings.

“Secondly, we have opened our annual programme which is Dana Kandungan Digital (DKD) whereby we channel funding for the creation of dramas, documentaries and films. For the short-term period, we will simplify and expedite the approval process for these funds,” he said.

He was speaking during a dialogue session with creative industry players at Finas Sarawak branch here yesterday.

He said that next week, Finas would begin giving out offer letters to production houses to start dramas and documentaries. After that, Finas would evaluate and provide funding for films.

“I want creative industry players in Sarawak not to be left behind on what we have planned; we want to channel our funds as quickly as possible to revitalise the economy,” he said.

According to Zakaria, there would also be programmes for newcomers in the industry.

At the same time, he said Finas would push for films with a patriotic theme. He encouraged creative industry players with ideas on publishing patriotic films to get in touch with Finas to discuss production and funding.

“For the second stage, we have a programme to create a special economic stimulus aside from these initiatives,” he said, adding that Finas would work together with television stations to finance dramas and filming activities which had been approved so that they could be implemented immediately.

In addition, Finas would allocate funds for training programmes to scout for talent within the younger generation and help them gain an understanding of the creative industry.

He urged those involved in the creative industry in Sarawak to take the opportunities and participate in Finas’ programmes.

Also present at the dialogue were deputy chairman Datuk Norman Abdul Halim, chief executive officer Ahmad Idham Ahmad Nadzri, and board member Datuk Norhyati Mohd Ismail.