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Chartered flight and entire hotel booking: All stops pulled out for 'Bumi Manusia', 'Perburuan' premiers

Yuliasri Perdani

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Fri, August 2, 2019  /  02:28 pm
Chartered flight and entire hotel booking: All stops pulled out for 'Bumi Manusia', 'Perburuan' premiers

'Bumi Manusia' (This Earth of Mankind) and 'Perburuan' (The Fugitive) will be premiered on Aug. 9 in Surabaya, East Java. (Falcon Pictures/-)

Worlds apart from their humble and tragic beginnings, the movie adaptations of Pramoedya Ananta Toer’s Bumi Manusia (This Earth of Mankind) and Perburuan (The Fugitive) will be treated to perhaps one of the most extravagant premier events in Indonesia’s cinema history.

The gala premiers to be held by Falcon Pictures on Aug. 9 in East Java’s capital of Surabaya – where both of the movies are also set – will be nothing short of lavish.

The production house has chartered an Airbus A300 jetliner owned by Indonesia’s flag carrier Garuda Indonesia to carry around 250 people comprising cast, crew and journalists from Jakarta to Surabaya, Falcon Pictures producer Frederica said.

“We have also reserved the entire Majapahit Hotel [in Surabaya] and will hold the premiers at Surabaya Town Square, with a total of 3,000 invitees,” she said at a press conference in Jakarta on Thursday.

Renowned singer Iwan Falls, soloist Once and author-and-singer Fiersa Besari are scheduled to perform the movies’ original soundtracks at the premiers.

Bumi Manusia director Hanung Bramantyo viewed the movie premier – taking place days before Indonesia’s Independence on Aug. 17 – as a celebration for Pramoedya, who penned Perburuan while he was in a Dutch forced-labor camp in 1947, and created Bumi Manusia in 1975 during his imprisonment on Buru Prison Island in the Maluku Islands over his alleged ties with the now-defunct Indonesian Communist Party (PKI).

“When I watched a documentary on Pramoedya, what struck me the most was when he said Indonesia had enjoyed independence for 50 years at the time, but he spent 30 of those 50 years in prison,” Hanung said.

“Therefore, it is a bold and suitable step for us to celebrate Pramoedya’s work in Indonesia’s independence month of August.”

Perburuan director Richard Oh hoped that both movies, which will be released nationwide on Aug. 15, would prompt the audience to open Pramoedya’s books for themselves.

“Through the movies, we want to invite the public to discover more about Indonesian literature and Pramoedya’s works.”

Perburuan centers on Hardo (Adipati Dolken), a young Indonesian platoon commander, who leads a botched nationalist army revolt in the last days of the Japanese occupation of Indonesia during World War II. Hunted by Japanese soldiers, he disguises himself as a beggar and returns to his hometown on Java only to find out the bitter truth about his family and his lover Ningsih.

In Bumi Manusia, teenage heartthrob Iqbaal Ramadhan plays Minke, a young Javanese minor royal who attends an elite Dutch school during the Dutch colonial era in the late 1890s. His world turns upside down after falling in love with Annelies (Mawar Eva De Jongh), the daughter of Nyai Ontosoroh (Sha Ine Febriyanti) — a concubine of a Dutch man who overcomes various obstacles to be recognized by society.

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