Archive for July, 2010


Posted: July 28, 2010 in NSK


Starting with Astana Idaman, the first ever series produced, Nusantara Seni Karya Sdn Bhd, with a paid up capital of RM 3.5 million, has gone from strength to strength. Building on the earlier successes of Aku Untuk Mu, Durani, Kasih Dari Syurga, NSK has narrated engaging, entertaining tales with universal appeal. 

In its first year of existence, producing a bare 45 hours in the year 2007, NSK produced 247 hours in the year 2009. This year NSK is slated to do 259 hours, with a solid plan to increase the output to 281, next year. An international joint venture, with the expatriates bringing their proven expertise in various big international markets, NSK is poised to be the market leader with innovative successful global concepts adapted to the Malaysian taste. NSK is a complete production house originating its own concepts through brainstorming/creative discussions amongst its creative professionals, having its own high end cameras/lights/sound equipments as also full scale editing facilities complete with dubbing/music/mixing and top end graphics.

Churning outs hits with a regularity that leaves the competition agape, NSK has consistently topped, with the heartwarming story of Durani, the girl next door goofy klutzy charm of Dania in Awan Dania which is now in its 3rd season; the riotous comedy colors of Di Bawah Ketiak Isteri into its 2nd season; Qalesya – a special Ramadan series targeting family viewing which is also into second season, etc.

With funny comedies, compellingly tragic dramas, epics telling stories of a bygone era, NSK has done it all. NSK has explored different genres – tele-movies, series, mini-series, weekly dramas as also daily soaps.

  While Awan Dania beat the competition hollow on Astro Ria, NSK’s first daily soap shot on high definition, Senja Permai ruled the roost on Astro Prima for 4 months, with an all start cast comprising of Hafizuddin, Marissa Yasmin, Norman Hakim, Faizal Hussain, Zarina Zainuddin, Ainul Aishah, etc.  Dato Jallaluddin Hassan stared in Astana Idaman and Aku untuk Mu. Other starts to have graced the screen with NSK are Dinas, Farrah Dhiya, Fasha Sanda, Zamarul, Puteri Sarah, Almy Nadia, Scha Alhya, etc.

Being Astro’s preferred production house not being enough, NSK is now poised to take the local terrestrial TV market by storm by pitching for dramas on TV3, TV2, etc. NSK is also planning to enter the very competitive AD FILM market. Committed to excellence and growth through innovative out of the box programming, expanding the market through qualitative heart warming internationally successful stories adapted to Malaysian sensibilities, NSK has ambitions of making it big in the AD FILM and FEATURE FILM market also.

Driven, talented, breaking new grounds, NSK is at the forefront of the television/film revolution sweeping the Asian sub-continent. Seeking new vistas, new horizons, NSK solicits every creative individual’s, TV stations’ viewer’s support – to entertain, to grow, to expand.

For further details, NSK can be contacted at:

NUSANTARA SENI KARYA SDN BHD 25/3, Jalan Medan Setia satu Plaza Damansara Bukit Damansara 50490 Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. TEL +60-3-2094 3225 FAX +60-3-2094 3669.



Posted: July 27, 2010 in Ramadhan Series

Hey folks!

It’s that time of the year again, when we pray, fast, forgive and spend time in quiet contemplation.  It is Ramadan – bulan puasa, bulan suci….. and for us makers of TV soaps, it’s time to focus on  good wholesome family entertainment.

So after a successful first run, here comes QALESYA2, a heartwarming feel good story which had the viewers in its grip last Ramadan.

QALESYA as you know is the story of a young innocent beautiful poor 14 year old who is entered into a religious school, because of her parent’s inability to fund her education.

Being of religious, pious bent of mind, QALESYA relishes studying there, excepting quite a few mean girls harass her for enrolling without paying fees.

Muhammad (14) who always dreamt of being a rock star, is the odd one out at the religious school. Born to rich parents, who indulged his every whim, his wayward ways force his parents to send him to the religious school so that he may imbibe the wisdom of Al Quran and reform.

Sadat, a gangster’s son has his sights set on outdoing his dad. But his mother would have none of it and sends him to religious school in the hope that he will mend his ways.

Mustafa is ambitious of becoming a preacher and preaches at every given opportunity, much to the embarrassment of his friends and even his father. If he doesn’t have somebody to preach to, he will speak his sermons to the cattle, to any animal domestic or wild.

Comel loves food to distraction and has the girth to show for it.

How this motley group of people with different backdrops, interact and imbibe the religious teachings and thereby become better human beings, is what QALESYA is all about.

And guys, it’s treated in a light hearted funny manner, guaranteed to raise, more than a few laughs. So lighten up and be prepared for some good clean entertainment.

We will see you at Astro Prima,  Mondays  through Thursdays, 2100 hrs  from 9th August onwards.

Happy viewing and Selamet berpuasa !!


The ratings War!

Posted: July 21, 2010 in Uncategorized

I grew up in Ahmedabad, the-once-capital of Gujarat, India’s western most state bordering Pakistan. Like any desert part of the world, the climate was extreme. While in winter, though the mercury never did dip to the minus, summers were terrible at 50 degree Celsius.

Television viewing was a ritual we indulged in as kids. Home after school, was spent in front of the TV. With the frying heat, sneaking out was not a choice. Cable TV hadn’t started and the options were limited to local content.

As I grew up in the late eighties and early nineties, Ahmedabad was a booming TV station and the richest TV station amongst all regional TV stations with lots of sponsored programs. Gujarati stars came from Mumbai to act there and it attracted a host of directors and editors also from Mumbai. A few big time Mumbai (them Bombay) producers also had serials running there.

Then the competition got hot and all sorts of people started coming in. Not understanding what TV/films are all about, they started undercutting each other. To compound matters, a small poor production got good ratings. There being NO established co-relation between ratings and expensive productions, ratings became the sacred mantra.

Some overzealous well meaning higher up, without adequate understanding of the media, allowed the rates to dip. Since the per-episode rate became low, the artist rates, writer rates and technician rates as also production value had to be cut. It resulted in bad production. Because of bad production, the viewer-ship fell. Because the viewer ship fell, the ad rates also fell. So the per episode rate dipped even further and so began a vicious circle that destroyed the industry which impact is felt to this very day.

It has been 20 years since, but Ahmedabad still hasn’t recovered from those disastrous happenings. With the rates falling so low, all the good artists, technicians had no choice but to migrate to Mumbai. The left overs were non-artists and technicians who wouldn’t have been accepted anywhere. Only monkeys work for peanuts.

I am glad, that we at ASTRO are doing the reverse. We are paying good money to the good producers who make good productions. More per-episode money will attract the intelligent, well learned, qualified people to the industry whose parents otherwise will not allow their sons and daughters into the TV industry were the money to be small.

So more money, more intelligent people coming in, better productions, more viewers, better ad rates, and the cycle goes higher and higher. This indeed, is the way to build the TV industry.

Yes the important thing is that ASTRO should be all ready and prepared to milk the benefits when it grows bigger. If you expand the pie and others partake of it that would be stupidity too. I would say as industry leaders who invariably stand to earn, when the market grows bigger, the onus is on ASTRO to build this industry and the best way indeed is to pay well.

I was quite impressed with Zainir in the May 19th Pitching Forum, when he said that EPIC DRAMA costs are very high and he was aware that they may not fetch big ratings. But it showcases the Malaysian legends and history to the world and it is an exercise above the ratings game. He cannot recover their cost by running it only on Citra. I am sure he has ideas to sell it to the international market. Looking at the good budgets and the production values, I am confident the HISTORY channel and DISCOVERY will lap it up.

ASTRO has had the foresight to have foreign tie-ups. Foreign tie-ups, by its superior production values, international scripts with universal appeal tweaked to drama perfection, with good camera work, editing, music, mixing, styling, etc gives the local industry an example to aim at. That alone is worth the premium it commands. It will surely raise the industry standards, and expand the industry. At the moment, so research tells us, many upper class Malaysians prefer watching English content.

Slowly but surely, superior content produced locally will win them over. I am glad that even when sometimes ratings are not all that high, good productions are being appreciated and that, we are not succumbing to the pressures of the ratings game. I am glad that we have the vision to understand that what wins the ratings war is King only for the day, but good content will always rule.

We at ASTRO understand that Ratings won, is just a battle won. There are other countless battles that make up this war; and an important component of it is MONEY which increases quality exponentially, on all fronts.

How I wish somebody had shown the same mature understanding, 20 years ago in Ahmedabad. It then would have been a thriving hub of great cultural activity and the local TV station would still be teeming with talent. Well, all’s not lost and I see signs of the industry being resuscitated.

I am glad we have such examples to guide us through, but my heart still asks – why does it take an Ahmedabad to …………. and why did it have to be ‘My Ahmedabad’ or ‘Aapnu Amdavad’ as it is known now?


What to blog

Posted: July 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

Hi guys,

I am in an unsual place today. I have been asked to contribute a blog to the Astro blog. It could be anything under the sun, excepting not anything under the sun makes for interesting reading.

Now I am not into politics and I am certainly not abreast of the disasters happening, all around us.  I follow Gandhiji’s dictum of “DONT SPEAK, HEAR OR SEE EVIL”, which rules out most the stuff which makes this world interesting – some would say.

I don’t watch horror movies, nor will I make them. However, I do have a show on air called Aalia which is telecast on Astro, Prima 9PM monday – thursday. The other serials which I have produced and which are now doing the repeat rounds are Katrina Kamelia, Senja Permia, Di bawah ketiak istri, Qalesya, etc.

Qalesya season 2, by the way, begins from 9th August, 9Pm at Astro Prima. I think the world of Qalesya which is a well crafted entertaining drama featuring some of the most amazing kids I have worked with and my expectations are pretty high for it.

The management class I lectured the other day about our activities was pretty interesting too. Maybe I could blog on that, unless you guys have different ideas.

Do, please do let me know, what to blog….



Hello world!

Posted: July 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

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