Jakarta. "Keluarga Cemara," an upcoming movie adaptation of the 1990s family television series by the same name, announced its future cast members on Thursday (04/01) at a press conference in Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta. Some of the renowned stars that will be joining production include Adhisty Zara and Widuri Putri Sasono.
The "Keluarga Cemara" (Cemara’s Family) TV series, which was adapted from short stories written by Arswendo Atmowiloto, tells the story of a harmonious family of five living a modest life. The episodes convey virtuous messages of the importance of family over money or other material aspirations.
In the upcoming film adaptation by director Yandy Laurens, Ringgo Agus Rahman and Nirina Zubir will play Abah (the father character) and Emak (the mother character), respectively.
Zara and Widuri will play the daughters Euis and Cemara/Ara, respectively. In the series, both characters were portrayed as obedient daughters who helped their parents sell opak (rice chips).
The series also featured a third daughter, Agil, though the film producers have not yet revealed if she will be included in the upcoming production.
Zara is best known as a member of idol group JKT48. "Keluarga Cemara" will be her second movie role after "Dilan 1990," soon to be released this month. She was born in 2003, a year before the "Keluarga Cemara" series ended and is unfamiliar with the story. Now she is watching the series as part of her character study.
On the other hand, "Keluarga Cemara" will be Widuri's debut movie. Apart from being the daughter of actor Dwi Sasono and singer Widi Mulia, Widuri is known for her funny antics on her family's Instagram page, The Sasonos Family.
"Ara is a playful girl but there are sad moments [in the story], so I am learning to cry on camera," said the seven-year-old Widuri.
Yandy praised Zara and Widuri for their professionalism during pre-production.
"I am grateful that they are very dedicated. They actively rehearse and are open to be 'shaped' into their characters. We’ve had more than 20 script reading sessions, so it’s a long process, but they have been committed to it," Yandy told reporters.
Other young actors will star in the movie, such as Yasamin Jasem and Kafin Sulthan, who will play Euis's best friends at school — both are new characters. Yasamin has already acted in several movies and soap operas, while Kafin is by trade a jazz singer and pianist.
Co-producer Gina S. Noer believes that regeneration is important to maintain the continuity of the film industry, thus for the child roles, her team decided to cast actors who are relatively new to the industry.
"We need actors to represent the now and we need to explore their talents to enlarge the circle of Indonesian film actors. We know that they have great potential and here we try to maximize that," said Anggia Kharisma, another producer.
Gina said the crew also consists of many new faces. For example, Yandy has never made a feature film before. His past works include shorts and web series.
"Keluarga Cemara" will also feature Asri Welas as Ceu Salmah, the Sundanese mortgagee, and Maudy Koesnaedi as Mrs. Pressier.
The filmmakers are still hush-hush about the details of the plot line, which is expected to be completely original.
"It will be the starting point — how the family turns to be the one we saw on television. We can find out how they arrive in that condition," Anggia said.
Shooting on the film will begin on Sunday. "Keluarga Cemara" is being produced by Visinema Pictures in collaboration with venture capital firm Ideosource.