A new television series set to air in Indonesia this month will be an alternative to the common drama found in the average soap opera, promoters are promising.
“Tim Bui,” a 13-episode football-themed drama set in prison, aims to promote tolerance, teamwork and conflict resolution.
“ ‘Tim Bui’ revolutionizes drama TV in Indonesia, offering viewers a more educational alternative to many of the sinetron [soap opera] dramas currently dominating the market,” said Brian Hanley, Asia director for Search for Common Ground, an international NGO that aims to foster better conflict resolution.
“Tim Bui” is produced by SFCG and local media partner SET Film, and funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development and the Australian government through its aid program, AusAID.
Producers hope the series, which hits screens on Metro TV on Feb. 19, will reach millions across the archipelago.
The mini-series is set in a jail that is home to two rival ethnic gangs. Through a prison football team, the gangs evolve from violent rivals into teammates.
The show also tackles issues such as discrimination, corruption, women’s rights and radicalism — and the redemption from radicalism — all issues that SFCG deals with in Indonesia.
Suci Haryati, a senior program officer for SFCG, said they hoped audiences would glean the value of tolerance from the series.
The characters in the series, who will be portrayed by actors including Agus Kuncoro, Rio Alba and Khadafi, represent several religions and ethnic groups.
“Muslim and non-Muslim … They are faced with some problems and are expected to solve them together,” Suci said.
She said the team worked hard to draw viewers to the story.
“We are trying to present [the lessons] in the most interesting and communicative way we can,” she said.
SFCG has also produced “The Team,” a radio and television drama that has aired in historically conflict-ridden zones in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.