Prominent filmmaker Afdlin Shauki has announced he is boycotting the Festival Filem Malaysia 2016 (FFM) following [last Thursday's] outcry over segregation in the film awards.

"Sorry, this year I am boycotting FFM," posted the multi-talented artist.

"When Malaysians regardless of race can truly be recognised for their creative works as Malaysian works.

"All the best to those who have been nominated. FFM committee good luck to you all too," wrote Afdlin on his Facebook on Thursday night.

The disqualification of major Malaysian films of the year "Ola Bola" and "Jagat" from winning the best film category in the festival has riled many.

They were not nominated for "best film" because the dialogue was not fully in Bahasa Malaysia, and were thus nominated for "Best Non-Bahasa Melayu Film" instead.

"Why must the Film Development Corporation Malaysia (Finas) and Film Producers Association Malaysia (PFM) create a racist category like 'Non-Bahasa Melayu Films'?" Selangor and Kuala Lumpur Screenwriters Association (Penulis) Alfian Palermo commented yesterday.

Afdlin meanwhile wished the nominees all the best, including "all those who were not nominated because of stupidity (kebangangan)."

"Congratulations for making Malaysia proud with your works."

A commenter on his post agreed, adding, "Well done Afdlin. We should boycott until they can wake up to what are works of quality, and those that have no quality."

The News Lens has been authorized to repost this article. The piece was first published on Malaysiakini.

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First Editor: Edward White
Second Editor: J. Michael Cole