Just like the legend he portrays on his latest movie, Dion Wiyoko believes that success is a process.
Towards the end of year, it looks like Dion Wiyoko’s schedule is packed. The Surabaya-born actor even has to run for a meeting after this photo-shoot. Fortunately, his experience in modeling during the early days of his career came in handy. The shoot was nice and breezy, and the team quickly got a great set of images. In the hour or so that DAMAN spent with Wiyoko, we talked about his soon-to-be launched movie, “Susi Susanti-Love All” and his upcoming projects in the next few months. Other than “Susi Susanti-Love All,” he’s involved with Ernest Prakasa fifth production’s, “Imperfect: Karir , Cinta & Timbangan” and “Lampor Keranda Tebang,” a horror flick that based on the urban legend of Lampor, some sort of grim reaper.
In “Susi Susanti-Love All,” a biopic about the legendary Indonesian badminton couple who snatched gold medals together at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, he plays as Susanti’s husband, Alan Budikusuma. And, of course this month’s DAMAN Darling, Laura Basuki, played as Susi Susanti herself. The movie also tells about the couple’s love story that bloomed when they were in the national training camp. And at the same time, they were also on their own quests for success with their respective pro badminton careers. Interestingly, Laura Basuki is no stranger to acting with Wiyoko. “Working with Laura is really fun because she’s very cooperative and we go way back, so we didn’t have to build that chemistry from zero,” he explains. “When we started our (reading) workshop, we were fully committed to play this role.” The preparation for this movie was hard. They trained for six months to build up their physique, stamina and badminton skills. The shooting itself wrapped up in one and a half months. And who did they train with? Susi Susanti and Alan Budikusuma’s original coach, of course: a lady named Liang Chiu Sia.
The hardest part about playing the part was the physical side, as Wiyoko needed to master the right techniquess, the footwork, the gestures since he’s playing an athlete. As the famous saying goes, “the struggle is real.” At one point, they almost gave up on the training. As they were filming the final scene from the 1992 Olympic Games, between Alan Budikusuma and Ardy B. Wiranata, there were hundreds of audience members on set, cheering them on. He felt like a true athlete at the moment, what with the rush and the challenge of scoring. “That was an unforgettable moment,” Wiyoko notes.
“Actually, in real life, Alan Budikusuma is talkative and really funny. In my opinion, he is a winner because of Susi Susanti. She supports and encourages Alan so that together, they could can win gold. He needs a motivator and until this day, they’re each other’s biggest supporters.”
He hoped that viewers of “Susi Susanti-Love All” appreciate the hard work that these two Indonesian athletes did for Indonesia along with the sacrifices they made to gain the title, the medals and, ultimately, victory.
Describing himself as a self-confessed introvert, Wiyoko has his on ways to get into a character. In this case, he observed the real Alan Budikusuma and added small details to make it believable. It’s not just about the physical similarities but the soul of the character. We know dedication when we see it.
GROOMING LEONARDUS. Y
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