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Cave rescue movie opens today around Thailand

Jack Burton



PHOTO: Director Tom Waller directing scenes from ‘The Cave’ – The Nation

A movie about last year’s dramatic rescue at the Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai province opens today around Thailand.

“The Cave – Nang Non” is based on “the untold true stories of some of the rescuers involved in the mega-international rescue mission that captivated the world’s attention

The director, Thai-Irish filmmaker Tom Waller, told a Bangkok press conference this week “It was a real miracle that needed to be made into a movie.”

Waller says it tells the story of many unsung heroes, in addition to the divers and experts from all over the world, who brought out the 13 young men from the Mu Pa (Wild Boar) football team from the flooded cave.

“Those heroes included local farmers who let their rice fields be flooded by huge amounts of water pumped out of the cave, without asking for compensation.”

For 18 days, from late June to early July 2018, the dramatic events at Tham Luang cave managed to divert global attention from the World Cup football tournament going on at the time. It also diverted the media’s eyes away from the Phuket boat disaster which killed 47 Chinese passengers.

The cave drama began with the Wild Boars youth football team and their coach entering the cave after a routine practice on a Saturday afternoon, and rising rainwater forcing them to head kilometres-deep into the cave, where they got trapped. More than two weeks later, the rescue mission was successful and became the best feel-good story of the year.

“I am very proud that the first movie about the Tham Luang rescue is a Thai film.”

The production team for ‘The Cave’ includes many Thais and foreign film crews.

Waller earned critical praise for his 2014 film “The Last Executioner,” based on Thailand’s last state executioner, Chavoret Jaruboon.

Belgian rescue diver Jim Warny, who took part in the rescue mission, plays himself in the movie. He says the film’s portrayal of the rescue is “100% real” and not dramatised.

Many others involved also play themselves, including Finnish diver Mikko Paasi, Chinese cave diving instructor Tan Xiaolong, and former village head Noppadon Niyomka, who sent his “King Naga” pumps to help draw water from the cave.

SOURCE: The Nation

Cave rescue movie opens today around Thailand | News by Thaiger


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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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