The death of Yasmin came as a shock to me. I had the privilege to meet Yasmin more than twenty years ago when we sat on the same jury panel to judge architectural designs. The extent of her profound talent crossed many boundaries. Without a doubt, Yasmin was one of the most talented individuals Malaysia has given birth to. It is a tragedy that Yasmin was taken at her prime when she was at her most prolific. With Yasmin now gone, I wonder if film will ever be the same. She was a true humanitarian, an uncompromising giant unafraid to tackle the controversial issues and explore human extraordinariness through her unique vision. Yasmin's demise is a huge loss to us all in the industry. I will miss my friend enormously."
Tham Khai Meng, New York
Yasmin felt before she thought
She gave without asking why
She fought because it needed fighting for
Yasmin was a magnificent human being - because she was the most human of beings.
She practised her art with intelligence, simplicity, truth and courage, making people feel at a deeply human level because she knew it was the most powerful way to change perception or to touch people meaningfully.
I am the richer for having known her, proud to call her friend and face a future both richer and poorer without her.
Through the passage of our time on earth some of us can hope to make some small difference, then there are those brilliant few, those shooting stars who blaze a trail in the hearts of so many.
Yasmin was such a shooting star.
I will hold dear my memories of her, not least Yasmin happy after a hard day's training session serenading me and a good friend with show tunes as we took tea on Sydney harbour watching the sun go down.
“How’s your bum for spots, lad?” These were the first words Yasmin Ahmad said to me, in a broad northern English accent. We were in Chicago. I had been running Leo Burnett’s quarterly creative council meeting, or Global Product Committee. Yasmin had made an astute, intelligent contribution to the morning’s proceedings and my first impressions were of a highly professional, and – it has to be said - somewhat sultry - ad woman, with a sophisticated voice and strong creative convictions. She had spotted a faint trace of Yorkshire in my accent and uttered the county’s infamous greeting after sidling up to me during the coffee break. Hearing this beautiful Asian lady enquire about my health in such an unexpected way completely disarmed me. It makes me smile every time I recall the moment. This was the wonderful enigma of Yasmin: her deliciously wicked sense of humour and an uncanny ability to observe human behaviour and to find the perfect way to connect with someone on a personal level. This humanity shone through in everything she did. Commercials should never make a grown man cry. But Yasmin’s films for Petronas got me every single time. May she rest in peace.
Paul Kemp-Robertson, London
The nation lost a very talented individual and all of us will surely miss her heartwarming ideas and storylines. Al-Fatihah..
We are deeply saddened by the loss of a great Malaysian and storyteller. P1 is touched and honoured that Yasmin chose to be a part of our 15Malaysia project, just before she passed on. We echo the sentiment of many who concur that there will never be another filmmaker quite like her.
Praised be to the fathomless universe, for all the joy and wonderful things you had done for us through your brilliant mind.
I'll remember you always Yasmin, may your passion for the world light up the sky like twinkling stars. See you in heaven...
Budiman Hakim, Indonesia
I am finally able to sit down and pen some thoughts about film maker Yasmin Ahmad.
On late Friday evening, I received an SMS from Engku Imran, the CEO of Suria FM, informing me that Yasmin Ahmad had passed away. He has been keeping a vigil almost every day at the hospital. While we knew the award-winning film maker was fighting for her life, the news still came as a shock.
I have never had a chance to meet her. I certainly regretted that. Many of my friends and colleagues shared with me the many wonderful things about her. For me, like most Malaysians, we admired her many heart-stirring commercials. We looked forward to her Petronas advertisements at each and every festival. They were real, and most of all, she reminded us of the beauty of multi-racial Malaysia.
If our politicians failed miserably, certainly she single-handedly showed us what being Malaysian meant. Through her many films, she ventured into subjects regarded as taboo and sensitive in Malaysia. A Chinese boy falling in love with a Malay girl with liberal-minded parents. I cannot remember any single Bahasa Malaysia movie using a Sam Hui song as a track. Except Yasmin.
Just read the comments on the Net and Twitter, she had such enormous appeal. She would be missed for sure. It's so terribly sad that she would no longer be with us. There was so much more she could do. She was working with TV3 for future projects when she collapsed. But God has his plans. Rest in peace.
Wong Chun Wai
Yasmin picked out dirt and dried cement from my hair once. We were walking by a construction site on the way to lunch at the Coliseum Cafe. I forgot instantly how big she was as an industry figure, and remembered instead how much bigger she was as a human being. She is.
I did not know Yasmin personally, but I was shocked and saddened by her sudden death. Her work will be a lasting testament to her great talent.
It is always a sad day to lose a lovely and vibrant person in the prime of their life.
Barbara Levy, London
Yasmin Ahmad is a true artist who presents her messages with deep humanity, love and profoundness. Like a good ad, it's simple, honest and to the point.. And sometimes, ironically, controversial. Her consistency lies in her call for us to celebrate our multicultural differences and to be proud Malaysians of one identity and unity. May Allah bless her soul and as we miss her we will celebrate her creativity for a long time to come.
She gave us art, and she gave us heart.
May ALLAH grant her jannah. She should be honoured for her creative talents and passion for promoting 1Malaysia.
Mirza Mohamed Tariq Beg
What a shock to lose such a gifted creative talent. Yasmin had the incredible ability to produce work that not only touched our hearts but also at its very core provided us with powerful messages of social change and the need to respect the individual no matter who you are .I never had the privilege of working with her but for me she was one of the most profound and insightful creative person I’ve ever met.
You leave a void no one can fill. I’m numb at the loss of a true leader.
You inspired an entire generation with your wit, honesty, courage and conviction.
You had so much more to give, but we’re richer for every moment you spent with us. Thank-you Yasmin, I will always remember.
Yasmin is arguably the only credible personality who can manifest the 1Malaysian concept in its purest form on film for all to relate to, aspire
Yasmin gave us the priceless gift of sight. She let us see and understand that discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different.
Dearest Yasmin, our mentor, friend, sister and betul-betul fellow Malaysian. You made us see that the best ideas are born from humanity and truth.
She is my best friend, forever
Glenn Marsalim, Indonesia
I never had a chance to work with Yasmin but I remember when I first started working as a visualiser in Ogilvy Direct back in 91, I used to walk around the corridors of the creative department in advertising.
(Back then, teams had their own rooms.) There was loud laughter coming from one of the rooms, almost like a chuckle. I saw a writer lying on the floor and writing ads. She seemed to be having the most fun and was doing the best work in Ogilvy.
I was very envious of that person – she was creating great campaigns and shooting big commercials while I was stuck licking stamps and stuffing letters into envelopes.
Today, after 18 years, I’m still envious of that person.
Yasmin, you will be missed.
Our nation’s great loss! Yasmin is loved by ALL, a true “1 Malaysia” even before it started, as seen from the commercials and movies produced. I knew Yasmin in her early days at O & M in the 80’s, she was then a copywriter and I was the Account Executive.
Dato’ Borhanuddin Osman
I first met Yasmin while at O&M in 83-84. We were smoking buddies. Then and always there was this sparkle in her eyes and a magic aura about her, her interest in copywriting and creativity. I am thankfull for the opportunity to have met and known such a wonderfull person. She and her work have left a lasting impression and legacy for the local adandn Film industry... I pray for Yew Leong to have the courage and strength to carry on...
Pius Eugene, Vietnam
I once was in a meeting in a glass partitioned room just outside Yasmin and Ali's room. Yasmin was going to her room, then she stood facing me, lift up her blouse and pressed her bare stomach against the glass wall. With a mischievous grin on her face! Her clowning around taught people like me, who take work and life too seriously, that I even forgot how to smile: to "Enjoy each moment in life. Now".
For tomorrow may never come. Yasmin, you left so suddenly and may not see another sunrise again. Sweet memories of you remain. Rest in peace in God's arms.
Farewell dear Yasmin,
There's no need for sadness,
And you would have had no need for tears,
But you would have asked us to come together,
To put aside our fears; as you have showed us.
Transending colour, faith and culture - simply because there's really nothing to prove.
That we are all the same.
We are glad to have witnessed your strength,
It has made us better peoples,
So fare thee well Yasmin,
The earth is trembling, as you leave.
In Yasmin, Malaysian advertising has lost its daughter of the soil. The
world of advertising has lost a brilliant and honest creative person.
Personally, I have lost a very dear friend whom I admired, not just as a
great creator, but also as a person who believed in and cheered work that
made a difference to the lives of people. God bless her soul.
With a heavy heart.
Yasmin was not just one of malaysia's best creative talents, she was also a true Malaysian as she showed in some of her best works and this is where we will feel her untimely passing most.
Ho Kay Tat
Over the years Yasmin had worked tirelessly painting a wonderous masterpiece that canvasses the beauty, joy and aspirations of our nation - a celebration of our diversity and humanity. Her vision had touched and opened our hearts. Each brushstroke were laid down with an unadulterated compassion, uncompromised love and utmost honesty. Unfortunately she did not finish this masterpiece, but I am certain that she knew the only way it could be finished is if we ourselves pick up our brush and make our personal contributions. This I’m certain was what she hoped for and if we intend to honor her, this is what we must do.
Dato' Shafri Mohamad
There is always one person whom you remember as having a profound affect on your career.
For me, Yasmin was that person.
She gave me my first job; she guided me, she taught me, she spent time with me.
Her influence will always remain with me. She was my mentor.