SINGAPORE - Move over Ah Boys, the Ah Girls are coming.
Local director Jack Neo will helm a movie about female recruits undergoing national service (NS) titled Ah Girls Go Army. It is slated to premiere on Chinese New Year in 2022, which will fall on Feb 1.
Neo, 61, directed the successful Ah Boys To Men comedy film series (2012 to 2017), whose four titles had grossed more than $26.8 million in theatres.
In the new movie, women have to be conscripted into the military as there are not enough men in Singapore. It will be presented and distributed by Neo's production house J Team Productions and film and distribution company mm2 Entertainment.
The story will focus on the first batch of female recruits, who are Gen Z teenagers with different socio-economic backgrounds. They undergo the demanding Basic Military Training, which will push them to their physical and emotional limits.
In a press release on Wednesday (Sept 29), Neo said: "Singaporeans are very fortunate; we live in a relatively safe and stable world. But what if the population of young people drops below the level that we need to sustain our defence? We know that the birth rate of our society is dropping each year.
"Can our Singaporean women step up to the challenge of defending our nation, the same as we ask of our men? This is what I want to explore in our new movie. In a lot of ways, this mirrors the first batch of young men who were called up for NS way back in 1967."
Actress Apple Chan, who appeared in Ah Boys To Men 4 (2017), will reprise her role as Lieutenant Zhang, while other cast members from the series are expected to have cameos.
Neo and his team are also looking for fresh faces for minor roles and online auditions for those interested in playing female recruits will begin on Wednesday (Sept 29). More details will be released on the official Facebook pages of J Team and mm2 Entertainment at 10.30pm.