The Malay film industry of the 1950s and 1960s is something that the Malays in Singapore (and Malaysia) hold very dearly to their heart. The glorious days of Malay cinema, which was headquartered in Jalan Ampas by Shaw Brothers, continues, until today, to evoke a sense of pride, happiness and wonder to the people. For many people back in the 50s (and possibly even today), Jalan Ampas is a magical place where beautiful music and amazing visuals came together and made dreams come alive. Many wanted to be part of that dream.
But what makes Jalan Ampas special compared to its other counterparts (there were other competitors, most famous was Cathay Keris, which we will also touch on in JALAN AMPAS) was not only the films it made but the people who made the films. Names like Aziz Sattar, S Shamsudin, Jins Shamsudin, S Sudamarji, S Kadirisman, Noormadiah, Ahmad Nesfu, Sarimah, Kassim Masdor and the most famous of them all, the legendary P Ramlee… these are the people who made the name Jalan Ampas become synonymous with Malay cinema and the Malay film industry. People love them, wanted to be like them and even changed their names to be like them (or become the characters they play in films). That was how strong their influence was back in the time.
So to make a Malay drama of blockbuster quality, we feel that we needed to pay homage to the origins of the Malay film industry to depict the golden era of Malay filmmaking – to showcase not only the wonder and glory of the place at the time but also reminisce about camaraderie of the people behind the colourful characters they play and present the simple yet beautiful life that the people in Singapore led back then… in Jalan Ampas.
JALAN AMPAS LOGLINE: A 68 year old woman, once a young and struggling starlet in the 50s and 60s, filled with guilt and regret goes on a search for her long lost biological daughter, whom she last saw at Jalan Ampas Studio in 1963 and in the process uncovers what went on behind the walls surrounding her, then and now.
CONCEPT AND OVERALL SYNOPSIS
JALAN AMPAS is a drama series about family, love, redemption and the trials and tribulations of the life of the people behind the Malay film industry of Jalan Ampas.
JALAN AMPAS is a drama of two parallel storylines – one a period drama and the other an investigative melodrama set in the present. The central theme of the drama series is love, redemption and the trials and tribulations of the life of the people behind the Malay film industry of Jalan Ampas in the 50s and 60s. Musalmah, a 68 year old woman is recently widowed. Her late husband, Dr, Kamaruddin, a rich and successful doctor recently died of a heart attack. Dr. Kamaruddin leaves her behind with her only daughter, Khatijah, 35, who is married to Maidin, 40 a businessman. Bereaving, Musalmah takes out some memorabilia belonging to Dr. Kamaruddin, including some of hers.