The Jakarta Post
Iqbaal Ramadhan at the 'Bumi Manusia' film adaptation press conference in Yogyakarta on May 24. Iqbaal will star as Minke, the film's main character. (Antara News/Nanien Yuniar)
Production company Falcon Pictures has announced that it will adapt the novel Bumi Manusia (This Earth of Mankind) into a film.
Written by acclaimed literature giant Pramoedya Ananta Toer, the book is the first of a tetralogy written while Toer was imprisoned on Buru Island, Maluku. Set in 1898 to 1918 when Indonesia was under Dutch colonial rule, it captures the emergence of the national awakening movement and the influence of Dutch Indies’ thinking in Indonesia.
Actor Iqbaal Ramadhan will play the main character of Minke, a native who is able to enrol in an exclusive school for the Dutch. Minke is considered revolutionary as he often stands up to the Dutch to demand his rights and he views all men as equal.
The cast and crew of the film was revealed at a press conference in Sleman, Yogyakarta, on Thursday, as quoted by Antara.
Hanung Bramantyo will serve as director with Salman Aristo as screenwriter, while other cast members are Mawar Eva De Jongh, Ine Febriyanti, Donny Damara and Ayu Laksmi.
Iqbaal first rose to fame as a member of Cowboy Junior boyband in 2011. In 2018, he starred as the titular role in the commercially successful film Dilan: 1990, this year’s box office hit with 6,315,096 viewers.
Hanung said the 20-year-old Minke, who absorbs both European and Javanese culture, is somewhat similar to millennials who are facing culture shocks. The 18-year-old Iqbaal, who recently graduated from a pre-college program at the Armand Hammer United World College of the American West in New Mexico, the United States, is considered perfect for the role.
First published in 1980 by publisher Hasta Mitra, Bumi Manusia was banned by the Indonesian Attorney General the following year. In 2005, the book was published by Lentera Depantara, after it was translated into 33 languages.
Filming will begin in July and will take place in Yogyakarta, Semarang and the Netherlands.
There have been several attempts to adapt the book into a film. The first was in 2004 by film producer Hatoek Soebroto with his company, the Elang Perkasa Corporation.
In 2010, Mira Lesmana from Miles Films stated that they had finished the screenplay and research for the filming locations would follow. Then in 2015, director Anggy Umbara confirmed that he will direct the film under Falcon Pictures. Two years later, Hanung Bramantyo was cast as director. (wng)