KUALA LUMPUR: Syamsul Yusof’s latest film, Munafik 2, sees the popular actor and director working with award-winning actress Maya Karin for the first time.
In a news report yesterday, the 34-year-old talent, who is also a scriptwriter, producer and singer, admitted to torturing the actress in the supernatural horror sequel.
“I have wanted to work with Maya for the longest time, and in fact, I was already picturing her in the role of Sakinah while I was initially writing the script,” he said.
Two years ago, Syamsul wrote, directed and starred in Munafik which broke the box office with a collection of over RM17 million.
The new film, his 10th at directing, has him reprising his role as a religious traditional healer who has to help a single mother played by Maya from the evil clutches of a deviant black magic practitioner.
Syamsul added that throughout his career, he had never tortured a character as badly as Sakinah and that Maya was up to the challenge.
“She got it bad, such a sadistic life. As a director, I feel that Maya is a great actress and very professional. She delivered everything that I asked her to do, including the physical and action sequences. I made her fall down countless of times. Her character here is the heaviest role she’s ever played as an actress,“ he said.
Syamsul added that it was the pressure of the success of the first film that made him take his time in order to come up with a better and solid follow up.
“I had to give my very best, not just to satisfy the audience but myself as a director as well,” he said.
Maya, who has not appeared onscreen in about three years now, said that she did not regret her decision to star in Munafik 2, which opens in cinemas nationwide tomorrow.
“I’ve been waiting for the right script and Skop Production’s reputation precedes them, not to mention the quality of films from Syamsul as a director,” said the 39-year-old Pontianak Harum Sundal Malam and Waris Jari Hantu actress.
She added that her initial filming schedule of 20 days became 40 as Syamsul had more ideas and reworked the script and added more scenes as well.
“Overall it took about 65 days of shooting for the whole film and Syamsul is the most demanding director I’ve worked with. But I didn’t mind it since it’s great and very satisfying to be able to work on a good film,” she said.
Maya, who will soon be releasing a new single, which is a duet with Kaka Azraff titled Get Away, added: “I hope that my performance in the film will make audience members pee in their collective pants from fear.”