Original film title in Malay: Jula Juli Bintang Tiga
Literal English translation of film title: Jula Juli the Third Star
Directed by B. N. Rao
Written by Yem (story adapted from bangsawan play)
Starring: Salmad Ahmad, Abdullah Chik, Sheriff Medan, Umi Kalthom
Produced by Cathay-Keris
Sultan Ibrahim Building (Johor Bahru)
Kuala Lumpur Railway Station
Istana Besar (or ‘Grand Palace’), Johor Bahru
Based on a popular bangsawan play, Jula Juli Bintang Tiga is a fantasy film about the romance between a king and a star-fairy named ‘Jula Juli’, who descends from the sky riding on swans. The king falls deeply in love with Jula Juli and introduces her to the ways of a human being. Soon, they get married and have a son. However, Jula Juli’s secret is then revealed and she is forced to return to her celestial home (to the company of her two elder fairy-sisters). The king subsequently succumbs to a curse, transforms into a terrifying hairy beast and roams the jungle.
Shot mainly in the Cathay Keris studios at East Coast Road, the film also featured a number of outdoor locations, essentially the exteriors of grand-looking palaces and buildings (to act as the king’s palaces). The production crew probably found Singapore’s istana/palaces wanting, so they headed north to Malaya for on-location shoots, in search of worthy “palace-like” buildings. In Johore Bahru, they chose the Sultan Ibrahim Building (the former state secretariat building, with its Saracenic design) and the Istana Besar (the grand palace of the Sultan of Johor, said to be built in the Anglo-Malay architectural style). In Kuala Lumpur, they also took a liking to the Victorian-Moorish architectural features of the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station.
1. ‘Pergabongan kesah zaman fiudal dan puteri kayangan’. Berita Harian. 30 October 1959, p. 7.
© 1959 Cathay-Keris