Jack Neo to release Ah Girls Go Army for Chinese New Year 2022

From left to right: Ng Say Yong, content director of mm2 Asia; filmmaker Jack Neo of J Team Productions; and actress Apple Chan, at a press conference for Neo’s film Ah Girls Go Army on September 29, 2021 (Photo: mm2 Entertainment)

SINGAPORE – Director Jack Neo announced on Wednesday (September 28) that he is set to shoot his next film, Ah Girls Go Army, and that he plans to release it in time for the upcoming Chinese New Year.

The film, a co-production of Neo’s J Team Productions and mm2 Entertainment, is set to hit theaters on February 1, the first day of Chinese New Year 2022.

Ah Girls Go Army, a spin-off of Neo’s Ah Boys To Men films, takes place in a Singapore fantasy future in which women are drafted into the military because there aren’t enough men. Apple Chan will star, reprising his character from Ah Boys To Men 4, army officer Zhang Xinyi. The cast of Ah Boys To Men will be making cameo appearances.

filmmaker Jack Neo of J Team Productions;  and actress Apple Chan, at a press conference for Neo's film Ah Girls Go Army on September 29, 2021. Chan will play Lieutenant Zhang Xinyi in the film.  (Photo: mm2 Entertainment)

Apple Chan will play Lieutenant Zhang Xinyi in Ah Girls Go Army. (Photo: mm2 Entertainment)

Here is an official description of the film’s script:

The story will focus on Singapore’s first batch of female recruits, a group of Generation Z teenage girls with different backgrounds and upbringing. As they undergo the demanding basic military training under the fierce leadership of Sergeant Lim and Lieutenant Zhang, the girls find themselves pushed to their physical and emotional limits. Together, they will overcome their resistance to national service, face the challenges they face, and discover new abilities – using them to resolve and repair relationship issues in their personal lives.

J Team and mm2 also announced that casting for the actors began on Wednesday via online auditions. The producers are looking to “recruit” new faces to fill some of the film’s minor roles.

Actress Apple Chan, who will play Lieutenant Zhang Xinyi in Jack Neo's Ah Girls Go Army, at a press conference for the film on September 29, 2021 (Photo: mm2 Entertainment)

Apple Chan will reprise his character from Ah Boys To Men 4, army officer Zhang Xinyi. (Photo: mm2 Entertainment)

Neo said at a press conference for the film’s announcement that he had stopped film production during the pandemic, but the local film industry had to move forward as Singapore planned to live with COVID -19 endemic.

The director said the budget for Ah Girls Go Army is expected to be around S $ 1.6 million to S $ 1.8 million. It was originally planned as a web series, but then investors thought the concept would work well as a feature film.

When asked if the deadline for directing the film was too short, with four months before the film’s scheduled release, Neo said it was a manageable deadline for the film’s scale, given that the script has already been written. He said filming is expected to last 25 days and end in November, while post-production is expected to be completed by January.

A casting poster for the film Ah Girls Go Army by Singaporean director Jack Neo, due for release on February 1, 2022. Apple Chan (pictured) will star in the film, which is set to shoot in November 2021.

Apple Chan in a casting poster for Ah Girls Go Army. (Image: mm2 Entertainment)

“Singaporeans are very lucky; we live in a relatively safe and stable world. But what if the youth population drops below the level we need to support our defense? said Neo. “We know that our society’s birth rate is dropping every year. Can our Singaporean women rise to the challenge of defending our nation, like we ask our men? That’s what I want to explore in our new film. in many ways, this reflects the first group of young men who were called up for NS in 1967. They would be the Gen Z grandfathers that we have acting in Ah Girls now. “

Ng Say Yong, Content Manager of mm2 Asia, said: “We are very happy to start production on another Jack Neo film. It’s a tough time for the media industry, but we’re determined to overcome it by doing what we do best – producing compelling and entertaining content to meet an audience long deprived of a good local film. And what better way to do that than to take a leaf from Singapore’s most iconic franchise and inject it with the theme of diversity and gender equality? Jack Neo’s familiar humor will lift our spirits as we continue to navigate with cautious optimism through the choppy waters ahead. “

Neo’s latest film, The Diam Diam Epoque 2, hit theaters in February this year.

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