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Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020)

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Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | The Thaiger
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PHOTO: Kata Rocks

Where better to spend your new year’s celebrations than the tropical island of Phuket. There’s such a variety of excellent choices you have some big decisions to make! From the insane to the family-friendly, busy Patong Beach to stylish beach clubs, they’re all here waiting to carry you into the new year.

Forecast in Phuket for the day is 29 degrees and partly cloudy which assures a beautiful, balmy evening to see in 2020.

See in 2020 at one of these recommended locations…

Blue Tree

Blue Tree is the newest tourist venue on the island featuring a humungous man-made swimming pool and leisure entertainment experiences. The Blue Tree Phuket concept is simple: a menu of fun, entertainment, dining, challenges and relaxation underpinned by our uncompromising sustainability platform. The amazing new facilities are in Cherngtalay, in the middle of the island.

Say goodbye to 2019 and ring in the New Year 2020 in Amazonia, Blue Tree style! Become Tarzan & Jane of the jungle, where adventure and creativity come together, with sustainability in mind. Dance the night away and experience the true spirit of Tree House: great vibes, creative cuisine, crafted cocktails and best tunes played on the island.

The Tree House will celebrate New Year with an unforgettable night of extravaganza, featuring signature entertainment, live performers & International & resident DJs line up.

NEW YEAR 2020 | TREE HOUSE PHUKET

NEW YEAR 'S EVE GALA | AMAZONIA | BLUE TREE STYLEVDO credits: IG Video_Phuket_NiceAndSimple

Posted by Tree House Phuket on Sunday, December 15, 2019

 

The celebration begins at 7pm, with the Chef’s extensive Seafood and BBQ Gala Buffet on the Lagoon Beach. A Champagne Gala Dinner will be held on the second floor of Tree House Restaurant, overlooking the spectacular Blue Tree Lagoon, followed by after party & fireworks. An exclusive VIP Area, Bottle Service Packages and selection of premium Gourmet Platters are available for those who would like to maximise their experience.

For more information about Amazonia at Blue Tree, click HERE.

They also have a family-themed event that starts at 4pm in the afternoon, more suitable for the kids.

Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The Thaiger

Café Del Mar

The stylish ‘orange cube’ along the coastline of Kamala is THE place to be seen on any visit to Phuket. Café Del Mar is holding a special New Year function overlooking the Andaman.

The have two events on the night of December 31 – a NYE 2020 Gala Dinner Buffet from 8 – 11pm. And then the bog party to carry you into the new year, the New Year Eve Party

Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The Thaiger

Patong

There are plenty of great locations about Patong for New Years Eve – it will be difficult to escape the party in south-east Asia’s premier party town. This year, the New Year celebrations will be held under the banner “Save Our Earth – Say No to Plastic”. Activities will be held from December 27, culminating in the biggest party on December 31.

The star attraction for the New Year’s Eve party on the beach will be Portuguese DJ Diego Miranda, who is well known as one of the Top 50 DJs in the world. The nightly parties, including New Years Eve, are being held on Patong Beach at a specially erected sound stage at the end of Bangla Road. Party in the sand!

Patong’s Mayor Chalermluck says that safety and security for all visitors is a top priority.

“Thirty-seven CCTV cameras have been already installed along the beach, and security guards will take care of everyone.”

The Patong beach road will officially close for an hour as Patong revellers celebrate New Year 2020 at the island’s most famous beach. Thaweewong Road (Beach Road) will close from 11.30pm-12.30am. Most of the beach road will be closed to traffic from Prachanukroh Road in the south near the Absolute Sea Pearl Beach Hotel to Hatpatong Road near Loma Park.

The fireworks will be spectacular and you’ll get an amazing view from just about everywhere along the beach.

Or you can party anywhere along the famous Bangla Road…

Every bar will be full of an international New Year reveller crowd. It’s not sophisticated or romantic. It’s loud!

For the GLBTI crowd there’s also Soi Paradise, off Rat U-Thit road (second road back from the beach) – an entire street where the clubs and bars will be in top form for a colourful New Year countdown.

There’s something for everyone around Patong for this New Year.

Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The Thaiger

Central Phuket International Countdown 2020

Right in the middle of the island, and organised by the Central Groups’ Central Festival shopping centre, is a big, family-friendly night of entertainment to bring in the new year. There is lots of parking available, for bikes and cars, and the event will be staged adjacent to the new Central Floresta shopping precinct. Taxis will be lined up to take you home if you decide to leave your transport at home. The line-up is mostly Thai celebrities and musicians but everyone is welcome to attend.

Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The ThaigerTop 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The Thaiger

Beach Clubs

Along Phuket’s west coast is a range of world class beach clubs that will hold amazing New Year celebrations for 2020 eve. From Kudo Beach Club in Patong to Catch Beach Club in Bang Tao, Dream Beach Club in Layan to Coast Beach Club based at Centara Resort in Karon. Or for something a little more boutique and special, head to Iguana Beach Club hidden away off the main coast road between Patong and Kamala. Also, just north of the island is the amazing Baba Beach Clubon Natai Beach.

A list of Phuket’s Top 10 beach clubs HERE.

Top 5 places to celebrate New Years Eve in Phuket (2020) | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: The fireworks along Kata Beach on December 31, 2018 from Kata Rocks.

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The BTS Law, South Korean parliament amends conscription law to allow Jin to stay with BTS

Caitlin Ashworth

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The BTS Law, South Korean parliament amends conscription law to allow Jin to stay with BTS | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Kim Seok-jin hits the magic age of 28 today but will be able to serve with BTS for another 2 years, postponing his conscription into the South Korean Army.

Many countries still have compulsory military conscription, where young men, usually, are enlisted to serve under their country’s military services. Thailand has it, so does Singapore, Myanmar and Cambodia in our immediate sphere. So does South Korea. That’s a problem for pop kings BTS.

Of course the 18 – 24 months becomes a disruption to your life and your career, but for men living in the countries with conscription it’s just an expectation. But if you’re part of the biggest and most successful pop band in the world at the moment being conscripted suddenly becomes a big deal.

And so it is for Kim Seok-jin, the oldest member of the South Korean mega pop outfit BTS, or Bangtan Sonyeondan. The oldest BTS member reaches the age of 28 today (by the way happy birthday Jin) and would have been expected to put his day of rehearsals and picking up music awards with the other members of BTS aside and enrol in the South Korean military.

Under the current South Korean laws for military conscription, all males, once they reach the age of 28, have to enlist for 20 – 24 months of service for the South Korean military. Remember, technically, South Korea is still at war with North Korea.

So able-bodied men in South Korea are required to enlist and serve 2 years of compulsory military service from the ages of 18 to 30.

In the past, when asked about the thorny issue of the military service interrupting the rise and rise of the BTS brand, Jin always humbly answered…

“As a Korean, it’s natural. And some day, when duty calls, we’ll be ready to respond and do our best. It’s something all the members often talk about, and all of us plan to accept military service.”

The other members of BTS have always echoed Jin’s comments acknowledging the expectation that they would be, above all, young South Korean men and serve their time with the country’s military.

Read more about BTS HERE.

The BTS Law, South Korean parliament amends conscription law to allow Jin to stay with BTS | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: Jin with the rest of BTS – from the left: V, Suga, Jin, Jungkook, RM, Jimin and J-Hope.

But there’s been exemptions in place for decades for sportspeople to dodge the military service but it didn’t cover ‘idols’, the K-Pop superstars, no matter how big they were in Korea or, like BTS, around the world.

So the South Korean parliament has just passed an exemption which will allow Jin, and the other 6 members as they also notch up their birthdays, to defer their enlistment for 2 years. In Jin’s case this means he will have another 2 years to work with BTS who, by all accounts, are still peaking in the world of pop music. Fans, universally, have opined that BTS is 7 members and would not be the same without Jin, or any other member for that matter.

The impact of BTS has been extraordinary, and has reached far beyond the shores of South Korea to become the biggest South Korean brand in the world… stand aside Samsung, Hyundai and LG. Just this week BTS has the #1 and #3 spot in the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart AND the #1 spot in the Hot 200 Album chart with their latest release ‘Be’, their second album release for a ‘disrupted’ 2020. Their 35-date, 17-venue stadium tour, set to tour the world from April this year, had to be shelved. It had already been sold out, in some cases, in minutes when tickets became available.

(BTS did mount an elaborate online concert which sold 913,000 tickets for the 2-day event in October, called ‘BTS Map of the Soul ON:E’.)

BTS are the hottest ticket in town right now. So were South Korean politicians be responsible for putting and end to the BTS dream? And then there was the value to the South Korean economy of BTS as an economic engine for the country. The Hyundai Research Institute reported that BTS generates an estimated amount of 4 trillion Korean won (US$3.54 billion) as direct economic value to South Korea per year and 1.42 trillion won (US$1.26 billion) as added value per year.

More recently, the success of their first US Billboard Number 1 ‘Dynamite’ has generated US$1.5 billion for the South Korean economy.

The amendment to the South Korean Military Service Act now states that if an artist has made a positive impact on South Korea’s reputation, then they can defer their enlistment by 2 years. This delay, however, can only come on the recommendation of the cultural minister. This means that Jin can now wait until he is 30 to enrol into military service. Same goes for the other members of BTS, by invitation from the country’s cultural minister.

Back in August, BTS released their first full-length English-language song, ‘Dynamite’ which has become the world’s summer bop at a time we all needed an uplifting song. ‘Dynamite1 debuted at Number on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, which made BTS the first South Korean act to top the chart. It also became the fastest rising YouTube video clip ever uploaded, 101.1 million clicks in 24 hours.

‘Dynamite’ is also the band’s first number one single in the US, although the group has already scored 4 Number 1 albums on the Billboard Hot 200 Album Chart, singing almost exclusively in Korean! In 2018/2018 they scored 3 consecutive Number 1 albums in the same 1 month period. The only other band to reach that record? The Beatles.

All this started talks in the South Korean parliament about creating a deferral for military service if the contributions to South Korea’s global reputation was great enough. The amendment passed just in time.

In the BTS universe, Jin, aka. ‘Third Guy From The Left’, ‘Car Door Guy’ and ‘World Wide Handsome’, has also been the group’s emotional glue, in-house cook and the oldest ‘Hyung’. The role of the Hyung, the older brother, or elder person, is considered an important role in South Korean culture. And it’s been a responsibility Jin has taken on seriously as part of the group since they started training in 2011 and then since their debut in June 2013.

BTS, and Jin, are likely relieved to have another 2 years to continue their journey into the annals of pop history, not only in South Korea, and Asia, but the rest of the world as well, including the white-washed US pop industry.

“Shining through the city with a little funk and soul, Light it up like dynamite”

BTS, put together a performance for the James Cordon Late Late Show of their latest hit, even recreating his host set for the shoot… and rented a jet!

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Darth Vader actor David Prowse dies – May the force be with him

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Darth Vader actor David Prowse dies – May the force be with him | The Thaiger

“…his swish with the black cape and his screen presence in the foreboding, shiny black high-tech exoskeleton won him a legion of fans.”

Darth Vader has died… May the force be with him. The man who played the bad guy in the first Star Wars trilogy, British actor David Prowse, died at the age of 85 after a short illness.

American actor Mark Hamill, who played Darth Vader’s son, Luke Skywalker, alongside with David and the initial cast of the epic saga, sent his condolences in a tweet.

“So sad to hear David Prowse has passed. He was a kind man & much more than Darth Vader.”

“Actor-Husband-Father-Member of the Order of the British Empire-3 time British Weightlifting Champion & Safety Icon the Green Cross Code Man. He loved his fans as much as they loved him. #RIP”

Star Wars co-star, and fellow Brit, Anthony Daniels, who played the gold-plated and effusive C3PO in all but one of the 12 Star Wars instalments, paid tribute to Prowse’s contribution to the saga.

“Dave’s iconic figure dominated the finished film in ’77 and has done so ever since.”

David wore the ominous black suit and helmet to play the Star Wars villain Darth Vader although it was the American actor James Earl Jones who provided the character’s voice in post-production. George Lucas felt that David’s West Country English accent was “unsuitable for the part”. The decision to replace David’s voice caused a long-term rift between actor and director that eventually saw David cut out of official Star Wars publicity events. But his swish with the black cape and his screen presence in the foreboding shiny black high-tech exoskeleton won him a legion of fans.

Darth Vader actor David Prowse dies - May the force be with him | News by The Thaiger

David’s career as an actor spanned 50 years, but it was his role as the Sith Lord in Star Wars that brought him international fame and attention.

But it was his role as the “Green Cross Code Man” from a British road safety campaign that Prowse said he was most proud of. David was awarded an MBE, Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, in 2000 for that role.

David Prowse was born into a working class family and grew up in a council estate in Southmead, in southwestern England. He gained a scholarship to attend Bristol Grammar School. He had a passion for bodybuilding and was crowned British Weightlifting Champion several times in the 1960s. He became lifelong friends with actors Arnold Schwarzenegger in his weightlifting years.

His towering figure helped land him roles as monsters and villains in TV shows and films. He played the monster in “The Horror of Frankenstein” in 1970 and a bearded torturer in “Carry on Henry” in 1971. That same year he made an appearance as a bodyguard in Stanley Kubrick’s dystopian film “A Clockwork Orange” in 1971. He went on to play Darth Vader in all three of the original “Star Wars” films, in 1977, 1980 and 1983.

With the success of Star Wars, Prowse became a regular on the fan circuit and attended conventions around the world for almost 40 years, but he was rumoured to have later fallen out with director Lucas and was banned from official events in 2010.

He published an autobiography, “Straight from the Force’s Mouth,” in 2011.

SOURCES: Reuters | CNN | BBC

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Chiang Rai

Ron Howard to direct cave rescue feature film ‘Thirteen Lives’ in Australia

The Thaiger

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Ron Howard to direct cave rescue feature film ‘Thirteen Lives’ in Australia | The Thaiger
PHOTO: The entrance to the real Tham Luang cave near the Myanmar border in far north Thailand

The Australian Government is putting up A$13 million to Imagine Entertainment and film giant MGM to shoot a live-action feature film called Thirteen Lives, based on the Chiang Rai Tham Luang cave rescue story. The film will be shot in Queensland, Australia in the hinterland areas behind the Gold Coast.

The film will be directed by Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, The Da Vince Code, Cocoon, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Splash, Frost/Nixon), and start filming in March 2021. The state’s Gold Coast hinterland will double for Thailand with a similar hot, humid climate.

The Australian Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, Paul Fletcher MP, says the production should inject more than A$96 million into the Australian economy, “directly creating around 435 jobs for cast and crew”.

Thirteen Lives will tell the remarkable story of the effort by many volunteers, including Australians, to undertake an incredibly complex rescue. And I am proud to say that this story will be told here in Australia.”

“I understand this project will also undertake a significant amount of cutting-edge visual effects work here, a great opportunity for our local post, digital and visual effects companies.”

Thirteen Lives follows the true story of the 2018 Tham Laung cave rescue of the Mu Pa (Wild Boar) football team, trapped in a cave by heavy rain and flooding in Chiang Rai, far north Thailand. After the team was stuck for days with no supplies and falling oxygen levels, a group of diving and rescue experts from all over the world were called up to work together with their Thai counterparts to save the 13 young men. Among those experts were a group of divers from the United Kingdom and Australia.

The first major feature film about the rescue operation was The Cave, released in October 2019. The film was quite critical of the Thai red-tape which hampered much of the early rescue efforts.

Ron Howard has worked with plenty of Australians in the past.

“From Thirteen Lives to the animated projected I am directing with Animal Logic in Australia, I am excited about the opportunity to film and work in Australia and dramatically expand on that list of collaborators whose sensibilities and work ethic I have long admired and respected.”

Imagine Entertainment and MGM’s Thirteen Lives will be distributed by Universal Pictures International.

Watch a message from director Ron Howard HERE.

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