Staff Reporters
Apr 4, 2024

RHB's latest Hari Raya campaign focuses on forgiveness

The film by FCB Shout tells the story of celebrated Malaysian lawyer Ahmad Zaharil Muhaiyar.

Malaysia's RHB Bank can be forgiven if it's drawn more than its fair share of tears in its festive campaigns over the years. Known for its emotional films during lunar new year, Deepavali or Ramadan, the bank has struck yet again with the moving true tale of lawyer Ahmad Zaharil Muhaiyar for Hari Raya this year.

And forgiveness is indeed the theme. The film reenacts one of Ahmad Zaharil's more unforgettable pro bono cases from 1998, when he defended a woman who had stolen a pencil case as a gift to her son who had ranked number one in class. Facing up to 7 years in prison, he was able to reduce her sentence to a Good Behaviour Bond. Twenty years later, the son who received the pencil case approached Ahmad Zaharil to explain how he was inspired by the incident to become a lawyer himself.

Tjer, FCB Shout's head of creative explains that they approached this story differently from other RHB festive films. They tried to stay true to life because the story was powerful enough by itself. "As such, we didn’t have to take a lot of creative license to turn this true story into an engaging and entertaining piece that is fit for the Hari Raya occasion."

Obviously Malaysians have been drawn to it. Since the release of the ‘Lembaran Baharu’ (Forgiveness) film on March 30th, it has been featured by multiple national news publications and has garnered over 8.5 million views.

“Hari Raya is a season of forgiveness and starting anew. Ahmad Zaharil’s astonishing story perfectly encapsulates these values and so much more, proving that forgiving and helping with a sincere heart will often bring not only far-reaching consequences, but also life-changing outcomes," said Abdul Sani Abdul Murad, chief marketing officer of RHB Banking Group. "Spanning over two decades, this story is the epitome of RHB’s brand belief of ‘Together We Progress’, and I believe the lessons we can take away from this incredible tale of forgiveness, justice, and kindness are especially apt in the times that we are living in today.”

Campaign's take: Tjer is right, there's not a lot of creative license on display here and some of the production elements like the swelling music appear highly traditional if not formulaic. But it does tell a strong story about the power of forgiveness at a meaningful time of year. For the brand and the occassion, the message is what matters, more than the medium. 

Behind the scenes

CREDITS

Title: LEMBARAN BAHARU (FORGIVENESS)

RHB Bank

Group Chief Marketing Officer: Abdul Sani Abdul Murad
Head, Group Brand Comms: Tunku Hazli Tunku Tolha
Manager, Group Brand Comms: Anwar Amin

FCB Shout

Co-owner & Chief Executive Officer: Shaun Tay
Co-owner & Chief Creative Officer: Ong Shi Ping
General Manager: Syahriza Badron
Head of Creative: Wang Ie Tjer
Creative Directors: James Voon, Jonathan Chan Bahasa Copywriter: Sal Abdul Malik, Zawin Najah
Senior Producer: Amin Taib
Senior Brand Director: Timothy Teh

Production House: D Moving Pictures

Director: Dick Chua
Producer: Jocny Lai
Director Of Photography: C L Wong

Music, Sound Design & Composer: GT Records

Executive Producer: Ram Nabil Chia
Producer: Anand Shashidharan
Sound Engineers: Brian Wong

Post House: Asia Pacific Videolab

Producer: Ling
Offline Editor: Koon Pak Fei
Online Artist: Aznir Halid
Colorist: KahSeng

Source:
Campaign Asia

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