Director Ghaz Abu Bakar can’t remember how he celebrated the occasion when it was announced that Polis Evo became the top local movie in the country back in October last year.

“I don’t think there was much of a celebration. When I heard the news, I was like, ‘I didn’t expect that.’

“I do remember feeling thankful. I didn’t feel like I’ve made it but more like there is more pressure on me now!” he said with a laugh during an interview in Kuala Lumpur, recently.

The Finas website recorded Polis Evo’s box office earning as RM17.47mil, ahead of movies like Chiu Keng Guan’s The Journey and Syamsul Yusof’s KL Gangster.

However, Syamsul’s latest release Munafik is said to be closing in on Polis Evo’s No. 1 spot with RM16.65mil (and counting).

Ghaz has no problems letting someone else have a go at the record.

“It’s tough lah. You know people are watching and waitng for your next move. So I do hope someone else would beat the record. So I can chill and not think about this pressure!” Ghaz, 41, said.

After Polis Evo thrusted his name into the spotlight, Ghaz revealed that he has received a lot of offers from producers to make more action movies.

polis evo

Ghaz Abu Bakar (far right) and his Polis Evo cast. Photo: The Star/M. Azhar Arif

He said it would be difficult to achieve the desired Polis Evo effect without a huge production budget. Polis Evo was reportedly made to the tune of RM2.4mil.

“I clearly said to them that we need to set a realistic budget. And if we can’t have that kind of budget, then we can’t make an action film. That’s the challenge.”

The question on everyone’s mind: will there be a sequel to Polis Evo? Ghaz has heard the rumours but doesn’t have any details to spare.

“I don’t even know if I’m going to be involved,” he offered.

He is currently hard at work on a new production – Lampu Merah, an Astro telemovie starring Nora Danish and Yusof Hashim (social media personality popularly known as Ucopppp Dubsmash).

“It’s a road trip kind of movie with elements of dark comedy. Of course, there will a bit of action,” he said of Lampu Merah which started production this week and will be released later in the year.

With a budget of up to RM150,000, it’s a far cry from Ghaz’s previous action blockbuster but he has no qualms with that.

“I’m mentally prepared. I know my ground. Luckily, I have a strong, loyal team and I think that’s more than enough,” he said.

While he knows people in the industry as well as fans are watching his next move, Ghaz is approaching Lampu Merah with a cool head.

“The best part about making Polis Evo was that we just did it. We never set any expectations on ourselves. We thoroughly enjoyed the movie-making process. So I guess, I’ll go back to that mindset. You just do it for the love of art.”