KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — The late legend of screen and song Tan Sri P. Ramlee has undeniably left a mark on the Malaysian film and music history.

And his legacy, is one that actors Tony Eusoff and Datin Sofia Jane hope to bring alive for the next generation in the upcoming dramedy film Mencari Ramlee.

Set in 1973, the film focuses on the struggles of performers in the film industry similar to the plight faced by P. Ramlee.


Tony and Sofia recently spoke to Malay Mail on working together to honour the late artiste, at a tahlil prayer event for P. Ramlee in Teras Jernang Mosque, Bangi.

The two stars said that they joined the film because of Megat’s script which captivated them and also the fact that they have been longtime friends in the film industry.

Tony said it was an honour playing the legend before in in P. Ramlee: The Musical and Saloma.


On his role in Mencari Ramlee, the actor said that it was one his most ‘important’ in recent years as he was given the chance to work with Sofia for the first time.

“It’s rare to find an actress like Sofia who I believe is truly a legend, so working with her in this film was a blessing.”

‘Mencari Ramlee’ stars (from left to right) Datin Sofia Jane, Megat Sharizal, and Tony Eusoff.— Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
‘Mencari Ramlee’ stars (from left to right) Datin Sofia Jane, Megat Sharizal, and Tony Eusoff.— Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

“She doesn’t have a sense of superiority and is a true professional on set, which inspired me and the rest of the cast to work harder as we wanted to repay the effort she put into her role.”

He hopes the film will give the younger generation how things were like back in the 1970s and the struggles of artists during that time.

“We want to make our younger audiences appreciate not just P. Ramlee but other Malaysian artists of the past and remind them of our rich history of arts and culture.

“Not only that, I hope our local young artists will be inspired to push forward the local arts scene to greater heights after seeing the struggles of their forebears.”

Sofia said that she chose the role of Zaiton (not singer Zaiton Abdullah) not just because of Megat but because it challenged her skills as an actress to jump back in time to the 1970s.

“I don’t ‘choose’ roles like this, rather I want to see if I can find a part of myself in the character that I can relate to. That’s what will make me take on the role.

“I think the special thing about this story is that it takes place in the 1970s and I enjoyed researching about how people behaved and talked in that era through watching films.”

She said that Madu Tiga was the film that inspired her the most as Mencari Ramlee also has a unique ‘dark humour’.

“P. Ramlee’s Madu Tiga is the epitome of love in a different way with how his character shows love to different women in different ways.

“That’s my all-time favourite when it comes to his comedies because not only did he act in it but he also directed it.

“I also used Semerah Padi as a period piece and tale of forbidden love,” said Sofia.

“So all those elements are there in the film, except it’s in a fresh story.

“We wanted to pay homage to such a great man but also keep it fun at the same time.”

The 52-year-old actress shared that it was special that P. Ramlee’s granddaughter Najua Mohamad Nasir was part of the cast that worked with her closely.

Najua shared more personal stories of the late artiste to the cast and crew which most people did not know about.

“Most of the time on film sets actors have to always take everything seriously, but this film was one of the rare moments when everyone really had fun.

“We weren’t thinking about acting methods and everyone just let go and had so much fun and there was so much laughter on this film set. So it was very special that way.”

Mencari Ramlee is expected to be released in cinemas this September.