KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - At 73, Senator Tan Sri Mohamed Jin Shamsudin still cuts a dashing figure and talks about his passion for film with the gusto of a 20-year-old.
The recipient of this year's Anugerah Seniman Negara (National Artiste Award) was first introduced to the world of film by the late Tan Sri P. Ramlee and has had an illustrious film career spanning 53 years.
"I have him (P. Ramlee) to thank for where I am today. He was my mentor and a dear friend and I learned a lot from him," he said after the announcement of recipients of this year's Anugerah Seni Negara here yesterday.
The prestigious accolade, bestowed on him by the Unity, Culture, Arts and Heritage Ministry, is the eighth to be given out since the award was first introduced in 1993.
Jin, who acted in more than 30 well-known movies such as Bukit Kepong, Ali Setan and Tiada Esok Bagimu, received numerous awards for his work but insisted he never expected any rewards or awards.
"I am sincere and dedicated to my work. My passion has always been to create movies to enrich our heritage. This award has come as a big surprise."
The Perak-born veteran actor, who also directs and writes films, is in the midst of pursuing his lifelong dream.
"I hope to complete my movie on the historical events that happened in Pasir Salak before I die.
"I want the movie to be an inspiration to the younger generation," he said, adding that he also hoped to make a movie about P. Ramlee.