TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - “I suggest you to go and get something to eat before watching ‘Aruna dan Lidahnya’. Better than having that food crave at the theater,” a moviegoer said after a screening about the movie featuring popular Indonesian actress Dian Sastrowardoyo on September 26.
The suggestion was not without any reason, since the movie shows multiple mouth-watering close-up shots of Indonesian culinary delights that managed to tantalize every moviegoer’s appetite.
One individual that successfully packaged a great visual for the foods at the big screen was food stylist Puji Purnama. “This is a great moment to promote Indonesian cuisine, which is trending currently,” said Puji when Tempo reached him on September 30.
He immediately accepted the offer for a collaboration with "Aruna dan Lidahnya", which came to a cost of having to decline projects from two advertising firms but gave him a platform to promote Indonesian food.
Puji revealed that he joined the project when the movie was halfway through production, which meant that he missed the opportunity to share a location with Dian Sastro and other Indonesian A-listers. However, as someone working in the creative industry, Puji is used to focusing on details such as styling food on a bowl used for a soto that he did not prefer but had to use since it was what the prior production had used in the movie.
Puji, who dived into the food styling industry since 1997, said that shooting close-up scenes for "Aruna dan Lidahnya" was not an overly difficult task. “The advertising industry is more detailed, the movie industry is not that demanding. The reasoning is to make looks as natural as possible,” said Puji, who spent only one whole day to complete his task.
Movies like "Aruna dan Lidahnya" that uphold the culinary world would often put forth the natural element, which might prolong the shoot but in return uses a longer duration to present the food. “Despite the differences in the two areas, my main task is to make the viewers think that the food tastes great,” said the former culinary journalist.