Viu has announced five original dramas to be released in 2023, after a post-pandemic year which saw recognition for local productions by industry peers and consumers alike.
The announcement was made at its inaugural Viu Upfront event, which was the platform’s gathering with key media agencies, business partners, clients and Malaysian film and arts stakeholders.
Viu has been wanting to do this for a while but was disrupted due to the pandemic. Now that we are at the end of 2022, we are establishing our Viu Upfront event to share with key partners and stakeholders a recap on what we have done in 2022 and what we are looking to do in 2023 from a content perspective.Viu Malaysia Country Manager Kingsley Warner
2023 will kick off with the highly anticipated Viu Original Nenek Bongkok Tiga, a supernatural thriller that has been generating buzz on social media. The production reunites award-winning director Datuk Yusry Abdul Halim with producer Zurina Ramli who was behind the Viu Original She Was Pretty, a standout title in 2022.
Nenek Bongkok Tiga features an ensemble of young up-and-comers and seasoned talent on the Malaysian acting scene such as Meerqueen, Sara Ali, Sofia Jane, and Sherlis Merlis, and is set to premiere in early 2023.
Following the success of Viu’s K-drama adaptations such as Black and She Was Pretty, Viu will be producing an adaptation of the hit Korean romance fantasy drama W: Two Worlds, starring actor and model Hun Haqeem and singer, actress and host Daiyan Trisha. The series will also be directed by Datuk Yusry Abdul Halim and produced by Zurina Ramli.
Other titles that span a range of genres will premiere in 2023, including the sci-fi psychological thriller Alter-naratif, to be directed by award-winning director Faisal Ishak (Isteri Misteri, Juvana, Nur Kasih) and featuring the talented lineup of Nabila Huda, Neera Azizi, Liyana Jasmay, Rahim Omar and Gambit Saifullah.
A powerful family drama about love and duty, faith and redemption from acclaimed creator Eirma Fatima (Pesan Dari Tuhan, Akulah Balqis, Perempuan Melayu Terakhir) comes in the form of Terlanjur Cinta. Dear Karma is set in both Malaysia and Japan and produced by RedComm Productions, who are known for hit films such as Gol Dan Gincu, Istanbul Aku Datang!, Manisnya Cinta Di Cappadocia and Kami Histeria.
Below are the synopses for each show.
Nenek Bongkok Tiga
When eight strangers wake up in a mansion guarded by an elderly woman with a hunched back (Nenek), they soon realise that they are being held hostage, not only in the mansion and its surrounding forest, but in an entirely unfamiliar dimension altogether. With a sinister threat looming, the eight are left with no choice but to complete a series of ‘games’ created by Nenek in the hope they can one day return to the lives they once knew…
Bringing back the award-winning combination of director Datuk Yusry Abdul Halim and producer Zurina Ramli (She Was Pretty), Nenek Bongkok Tiga features an ensemble of young up-and-comers and seasoned talent in the Malaysian acting scene, including Hun Haqeem, Sara Ali, Syafie Naswip, Meerqeen, Syazwan Zulkifly, Ashraf Muslim, Fimie Don, Sara Mack Lubis, Rykarl Iskandar, as well as Sherie Merlis and Sofia Jane.
Alter-naratif is about a company renowned for its innovations in the field of memory alteration – the ability to delete memories and replace them with artificial ones. Its CEO, Mel Isa, champions the technology as the future of psychotherapy, helping trauma victims to rebuild their lives. But when Mel starts experiencing blackouts and hallucinations, she suspects that her own memories have been tampered with. Her investigations uncover a rotten core within her own company and the echoes of a crime committed 20 years ago. But who can Mel trust when she isn’t even sure if she is really the person she thinks she is?
Directed by award-winning director Faisal Ishak (Isteri Misteri, Juvana, Nur Kasih), this psychological thriller features the talented lineup of Nabila Huda, Neera Azizi, Liyana Jasmay, Rahim Omar and Gambit Saifullah.
To save her drug addict brother, Salleh, from prison and lift her family from poverty, Hidayah decides to accept a marriage proposal from the much older widower, Pak Majid. In doing so, she must set aside her budding romance with her friend Amir. Pak Majid is courteous and charming, and despite their age difference, Hidayah finds herself falling for him. But just as she believes that she can be happy, Pak Majid returns from a business trip with a second wife. Hidayah must now fight to preserve this new life she has built. Meanwhile, Amir waits in the wings, wondering if he might finally have a chance to give Hidayah her happily-ever-after.
A powerful family drama about love and duty, faith and redemption, Terlanjur Cinta is the work of acclaimed creator Eirma Fatima (Pesan Dari Tuhan, Akulah Balqis, Perempuan Melayu Terakhir).
The story follows Karma, an idealistic dreamer trying to make it as a beauty influencer. She unexpectedly lands a job opportunity to go to Japan with Bianca, an actress who’s looking to rehabilitate her bad girl image by dating the boring but amicable Bob, her boyfriend/videographer. The three of them travel to Saga, Japan where they meet Sham, a failed lawyer turned pottery apprentice living there. Cultures and personalities clash as these four quirky characters each have their own agenda on this trip.
Dear Karma will be produced by RedComm Productions, who are known for hit films such as Gol Dan Gincu, Istanbul Aku Datang!, Manisnya Cinta Di Cappadocia and Kami Histeria.
W: Two Worlds
Following the success of Viu’s K-drama adaptations such as Black and She Was Pretty, Viu will be producing an adaptation of the hit Korean romance fantasy drama W: Two Worlds.
After Ika’s father (the creator of popular webtoon series W) disappears without a trace, her search for him inexplicably transports her into the webtoon world, where she saves the life of the main character, Aliff. In doing so, she finds herself written into the story as the webtoon takes on a life of its own and begins to function as a distinct reality. Aliff has been hunting for the man who murdered his family ten years ago. He realises that Ika’s fate and his are somehow intertwined, unaware that he is a character in a webtoon. As soon as the two worlds collide, all sorts of unexpected situations arise that lead to conflict and romance.
W: Two Worlds stars Hun Haqeem and Daiyan Trisha. The series will be directed by Datuk Yusry Abdul Halim and produced by Zurina Ramli.
These dramas and more can be found on the Viu app, which is available for free download on App Store, Google Play, and selected smart TVs, as well as on the web at www.viu.com.
2022 has been a successful year for Viu Malaysia, with She Was Pretty and Seribu Nina scoring wins at the national level from Asian Academy Creative Awards (AACA) after already picking up a slew of other awards. Both were among the five Viu Original titles released in 2022. Diana Danielle was the National Winner (Malaysia) for Best Comedy Performance for her role as Nadia Rahman in She Was Pretty. Meanwhile, local musician Amylea and Bajai’s Bintang became the National Winner (Malaysia) for Best Theme Song or Title Theme, which was featured in the same drama.
At the same time, Seribu Nina scored the National Winner (Malaysia) for Best Original Programme By A Streamer/OTT. Both shows will go on to represent Malaysia at the AACA grand finals to be held in December in Singapore.