On 19th August 2012, at about 4:22pm a loud explosion was heard at Robinson Road. A taxi exploded due to enemy fire. But do not worry, as this is just a scene from the up and coming Jack Neo’s movie, “Ah Boys to Men”, a collaboration between JTeam Production and MINDEF.
Thanks to MINDEF for the invite , some of us were able to talk face-to-face with Director Jack Neo and had a first look of the battle scene in Robinson Road.
Here are the shots that I have taken (Sorry to spam you with so many pictures but I think the amount of work that they spent, it is justifiable).
Storyline is simple (don’t quote me here as it may not end up as the storyline in the movie ). An attack occurred at Robinson Road. Two two Terrex Infantry Carrier Vehicles with soldiers from the 4th Battalion Singapore Infantry Regiment (4SIR) was deployed to the scene. At Robinson Road, the whole road was blocked with debris from the earlier attack.
Cars were overturned and there were cabinets, keyboards and etc that had fallen from the buildings.
There were many dead people on the street.
The Armor Infantry arrived at the scene.
As the road were blocked, they had to dismount to search through the place (BTW, this was being told to us by the production team).
As they searched through the place, they were met with enemy fire. This soldier was killed.
One of them was injured, taking cover behind the concrete.
The rest continue to fight back at the enemy inside the building.
They proceed to the next area.
They were met with enemy fire.
Suddenly, one of them shouted “incoming” and they started to run away from the vehicle.
A loud explosion occurred. The vehicle was hit.
That is it! That is the scene I am waiting since 12:30pm and it happened only at 4:22pm. And if you notice, I actually pieced up the story based on the pictures. They were actually shot at different time (look at the shadow). That is the magic of movie. Hope you like it.
Now, lets meet the director, Jack Neo.
Behind the Scene
He is a busy man. Running about with his walkie talkie and his PA a few steps behind.
However, he took time to speak to us about this movie.
Actually, my first question is how long does it take to close the Robinson Road for this shooting. “3 Months” is the answer. There were many areas that need to get approval. LTA (justification of the road closure), SMRT (diversion of the buses), police, building management and etc.
Finally, they were given just 2 days (19th Aug 12:01am till 20th Aug 5am) to complete the shoot and return the road to normal. If you notice how much debris that they have created, you will realized that they are racing against time. BTW, one of the criteria for this road closure is that they need to put up banners along the road to advise motorists of the closure.
And thanks to Jack Neo’s verification, this is NOT a war movie. Jack Neo assured us that his movies MUST have comedy in it. Just to let you know, the scene at Robinson Road may last just 2 minutes or less in the movie.
According to him, the movie will be in 2 parts. Part 1 will be shown in November 2012 and the next part will be shown in around the Chinese New Year period in 2013.
The shoot, according to him, is the longest at around 70 days. They had just returned from Palau Tekong from a 35 days shoot (I think). Palau Tekong is a restricted area. To do the shoot, it can only happen, thanks to MINDEF. With MINDEF, they were able to get into camps and also “borrow” two Terrex Infantry Carrier Vehicles with soldiers to do the shoot.
There will also be scenes of fighter jets scrambling at Air Base. Overall, the movie is about National Service in Singapore. It will touch on the older generation army (in Temasek green) to our latest 3G army. The storyline is based on soldiers in the BMT but I do not really know synopses of this movie (yet). So, I am not going to speculate. Check out their Facebook or
Back to the scene. Notice the “dead” people just now. I can tell you now that it is really hard work. Check these pictures out.
Check out the film crews. Very professional.
This is one of the important job. Marker for each scene.
Preparing the pyrotechnics.
Taking aerial shot.
The man behind it.
Check out the small screen.
Some interesting sights on the film set.
You have your chance to smash up a car.
or becoming Incredible Hulk with super strength (of course, those are Styrofoams and not concrete).
Playing with fire.
But not too much as fire broke out from one of the vehicle that is supposedly to emit only smoke.
I must also commend on the Encik (Warrant Officer) who is super supportive. He is always around. At every cut, you will see him advising the soldiers or helping them out.
I guess the people who had the most fun are the bloggers. We have a lot of freedom actually except for some house rules.
PR team from MINDEF
The MINDEF team getting some job done.
Myself (Vain as this is my first time on a filming set).
Here are some HDR (High Dynamic Range) pictures that I took at the set.
Finally, this is the shot of us with Director Jack Neo. He asked us to shout “Steady Lah”, haha.
Here is a short video to show how hardworking those soldiers are. Check out the rehearsal on an explosion scene.
So, remember to watch the movie when it is out.