How did Celcom Axiata win best Merdeka TVC for the 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards?

Celcom Axiata was voted by our readers as the best Independence Day ad of 2019. The next round of submissions for the 2020 Merdeka TVC Readers’ Choice Awards is officially open. Click here to submit before 15 September 2020.

Last year, Celcom Axiata together with M&C Saatchi delivered a goosebump inducing, masterpiece of a short film during Malaysia’s 62nd independence day.

Inspired by true events in 1957, Celcom and Axiata’s 2019 National Day TVC titled Getaran Pertama chronicles the search for the first choir to sing the national anthem of the soon-to-be independent Malaya. 

The commercial follows the adventure of Ahmad Merican, who was the Music Supervisor of Radio Malaya in 1957 and his good friend, music teacher and conductor, Tony Fonseka as they take on the task to fulfill Tunku Abdul Rahman’s wish of seeing everyday Malayans – regardless of race, creed and background – uniting as one voice to herald the birth of our new nation.

The team from M&C Saatchi, the agency responsible for producing the TVC, used deep learning modules that analysed hundreds of pictures of Tony Fonseka, allowing them to recreate his likeness. The system they created mapped out his facial features and allowed them to reproduce his facial expressions. By using mixed reality, they successfully rendered a virtual likeness that was true-to-life.

Wildly impressed and intrigued by the whole process, we dived deep behind-the-scenes of Getaran Pertama, from concept ideation, research and production by interviewing key individuals behind the commercial. Click here to read the full article with interviews.

This year, we have partnered with Astro as the official Readers’ Choice Awards media partner. As part of Astro’s commitment to promote patriotism and togetherness among Malaysians in fighting against pandemic, brands can now run their long form Merdeka/Malaysia Day TVC (duration up to 2-min) across top Astro channels at a heavily discounted rate, with additional promotions on digital and radio platform.

The first six (6) advertisers who sign up for Astro’s 2-min video package will get FREE admission to the MARKETING’s Reader Choice Awards – Merdeka TVC 2020 Edition worth RM2,000 per entry.