KUALA LUMPUR – In the year gone by, several iconic Malay celebrities who left us will be sadly missed by the film and music industry and their fans.
But their legacy remains as the industry has not totally forgotten their contributions, with their famous lines of dialogue and popular hits, fresh in their fans’ minds till today.
During the year, the Malay film industry mourned the loss of renowned actor Datuk Abdul Aziz Sattar, who will always be remembered by fans by his line: “Walaupun rupamu tidak ku kenal, tapi lobang hidungmu tetap menjadi pujaan hatiku.” (Although I don’t recognise your looks, your nostrils still capture my heart).
The oft-quoted line among fans is from the movie, ‘Seniman Bujang Lapok’ in which Abdul Aziz together with the late Tan Sri P.Ramlee and the late S. Shamsuddin had acted in. Abdul Aziz was the last renowned actor among the peers of entertainer extraordinaire, the late Tan Sri P. Ramlee.
Abdul Aziz, 89, died at 2 am on May 6, in Kajang Hospital following a heart attack. He was buried at the Bandar Tun Hussein Onn Muslim Cemetery in Cheras, Selangor after Zohor prayers.
Acted With P. Ramlee, S. Shamsuddin
Abdul Aziz was a Malaysian actor, comedian, singer and director, who is mostly known for his roles in the black and white Malayan films of the 1950s and 1960s.
In his heyday in the 1950sâ€™, he acted with P. Ramlee and S. Shamsuddin as the hilarious Bujang Lapuk trio.
On July 5, legendary singer Datuk Sharifah Aini Syed Jaafar passed away due to complications from lung fibrosis. She was laid to rest at Bukit Kiara Muslim Cemetery in Kuala Lumpur.
Close friend and media veteran Aishah Ali said Sharifah Ainiâ€™s passing is truly a loss to the entertainment industry. “Who else could lay claim to have recorded over 700 songs, released 93 albums and scored numerous awards? On top of that, the honour of Biduanita Negara (National Artiste).”
“But you know what, Iâ€™ll always remember her for her humility. Back when I was a rookie journalist chasing big-time Sharifah Aini for quotes, I was surprised that she remembered me as her hometown girl,â€ said Aishah, former New Straits Times Life & Times Editor.
Duet With Broery
In 1976, Sharifah Aini made her silver screen debut alongside top Indonesian singer Broery Marantika in drama Hapuslah Airmatamu. Her songs from the film â€“ Hapuslah Airmatamu and Seiring Sejalan, a duet with Broery â€“ became some of her most memorable hits. A year later, she won the Best Actress award at the Asia Pacific Film Festival.
The diva, with an alluring voice, released her last album Timeless in 2006. In the same year, she was conferred the title Biduanita Negara for her life-long contribution to the music scene.
Sharifah Aini announced an unofficial retirement in 2003 – at the age of 50 – citing it was done for the best interest of her only son Aliff Omar Ali (from her first marriage).
Closing the 2014 chapter was Datuk Mustapha Maarof, who breathed his last at the Tuanku Mizan Military Hospital in Wangsa Maju at 8.30 am on Dec 15, after suffering from chronic respiratory complication. He was 79.
Mustapha will always be fondly remembered by his fans from Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, as their ‘Malay film hero from Malaya’ whose good looks, landed him the leading roles, including as a prince.
Mustapha, the Malay Film Hero
Mustapha, whose real name is Mustapha Azahari Maarof, started his career in Singapore in the black-and white movies of the 1950’s era. He had acted in over 50 films, including the lead role as a Malay prince in Bawang Putih Bawang Merah in 1959.
The Malay film legend was also renowned for his lead role in a series of films such as Sumpah Pontianak, Yatim Mustapha, Sultan Mahmud Mangkat Dijulang, Keris Sempena Riau, Ibu Ayam, Mata dan Hati, Naga Tasik Chini, Playboy, Si Murai, Detik 12 Malam and Jasmin.
Mustapha carved a name for himself in Hang Tuah, despite playing the supporting role in this film, which hit the cinemas on Jan 28, 1956. P.Ramlee played the lead role as Hang Tuah, the Malay legendary warrior.
Other celebrities who have gone and are not forgotten include the late keroncong diva, Kartina Dahari, a Singaporean Malay singer and entertainer who was a fixture on television and radio from the 1960s to the 1980s.
Kartina, who was nicknamed ‘queen of keroncong, a type of Malay folk music popular at the time, was best known for her hit single, ‘Sayang Di Sayang’ (Lover is Loved), which was composed by Zubir Said.
Gone and Not Forgotten
She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2010. She died on April 30, 2014, at the age of 73. She was survived by three children and three grandchildren.
Her voice and her mastery in singing the keroncong music genre really had carved her name in the music industry till she was given the title â€˜Ratu Keroncong Singapuraâ€™ .
Among her keroncong hits are Keroncong Rindu, Seruling Senja, Jangan Ditanya, Sriwana, Tunas Kasih and Jali-Jali.
Her unique talent and charisma has been attributed to her vocal expression which is described by her fans as soothing and melodious.
Kartinaâ€™s star performance was enhanced by the way she portrayed herself with the Malay soft mannerism.
A performer with her own class.
The Malay music industry has also not forgotten singer and composer, Adam Ahmad who made his mark in the 80s. Adam, 50, died of a heart failure at the Ampang Hospital on May 15.
Adam became popular with the song â€˜Kau Pergi Juaâ€™ and as a composer, he won the Juara Lagu award twice through the song â€˜Janji Manismuâ€™ by singer Aishah in 1990 and â€˜Teratai Layu di Tasik Maduâ€™ by Fauziah Latiff in 1993.
Others Who Left Us
Other celebrities who left us in 2014 include former TV RTM presenter Taufik Latiff who died at 11.45 pm on April 18. Taufik, 69, became popular as a result of the Bintang RTM show he hosted between 1975 and 1986.
On each of his TV appearance, Taufik was always seen in a coat, a tie and Oxford shoes (which was quite popular in the 1970s).
Others who passed away in 2014 comedian Ali Mamak, 63, whp died from lung complications in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre (PPUKM) at 4.20 am on March 27. Ali rose to fame via the sitcom â€˜Santan Berladaâ€™ with fellow veteran comedians Os and Achappan.
On April 28, veteran actor Sidek Hussain died from a cancerous tumour in his cheek at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital. He was 63.
Sidek had a growth, which weighed 2kg, since he was in his 20s and had sought treatment and surgery at the Sungai Buloh Hospital. His wife, Selbiah Sulaiman said the growth was removed in 1982 but it grew bigger three years later and there was no other surgery performed due to the high risk involved.
Throughout his life, Sidek had starred in various local dramas and films including ‘Karak’ in 2011 produced by KRU Studios as a supporting actor.
The last drama he acted in was Paku Pontianak in 2013. He had also won several awards such as the Screen Award and the Lifetime Award at the 24th Malaysian Film Festival in 2011.
Among the films he acted are Toyol, Potret Maria, Rasuk, Kisah Seorang Biduan, Bintang Malam, Sumpah Semerah Padi and Orang Minyak.
Al-fatihah. May Allah bless their souls. – Bernama