Thai actors in Hollywood film

In 2018, the Moo Pa football team of 12 junior-high school students and their assistant coach were trapped in the Tham Luang Cave by an unexpected flood. Over the next 18 days, the world watched on as international rescue teams banded together to ensure the safe return of all thirteen individuals. 

There have been talks of a film depicting the rescue efforts for a while; earlier this week, however, Hollywood Director Ron Howard announced the ensemble for the movie, “Thirteen Lives”. 

‘Thirteen Lives’ includes Thai actors 

The site of the cave rescue, Tham Luang in Chiang Rai
Image credit: Debriefer 

The cast includes Tom Bateman, Colin Farrell and Thai actors like Vithaya Pansringarm, Thiraphat Sajakul, Sahajak Boonthanakit, Vithaya Pansringarm, Teeradon “James” Supapunpinyo, Weir Sukollawat and Nophand Boonyai, according to Deadline

Image credit: Pinterest

Many would recognise James from his role as ‘Pat’ in the Netflix hit ‘Bad Genius’ and Sahajak Boontanakit – from ‘Only God Forgives with Ryan Gosling – who played his father; In ‘Thirteen Lives’, the two will play Moo Pa Coach ‘Ek’ and the Acting Governor of Chiang Rai, Narongsak Osatanakorn, respectively. 

Thai actor in Thirteen LivesSahajak Boonthanakit in ‘Farang’.
Image credit: IMDb

Thanet Nartisri, a renowned groundwater engineer will be portrayed by Nophand Boonyai. 

Boontanakit’s co-star from ‘The Serpent’ miniseries, Thiraphat Sajakul, has been cast as one of the Thai Navy SEAL team members, ‘Anand’. The late SEAL team member, Saman Kunan, will be played by Weir Sukollawat, who starred alongside Princess Ubol Ratana in ‘Where The Miracle Happens’. 

Thai actor in Thirteen LivesSaman Kunan is a famous Navy SEAL who unfortunately passed away during the rescue mission
Image credit: New York Post

Hollywood veteran, Vithaya ‘Pu’ Pansringarm – who has starred in ‘The Hangover Part II’, ‘Only God Forgives’ and ‘A Prayer Before Dawn’- will act as SEAL General Anuphond. 

Production to begin in March 

‘Thirteen Lives’ is to be set in Australia as well as Thailand, with the Cave Rescue Divers played by Colin Farrell, Paul Gleeson, Joel Eggerton, Lewis Fitz-Gerald  and Viggo Mortenson. 

Thai actor in Thirteen LivesImage credit: The Playlist

United Artists Releasing, a joint venture with MGM, will be distributing the film in the United States; Universal Pictures will be in charge of international screens. 

International representation in Hollywood 

With the debut of Crazy Rich Asians, it seems that Hollywood is including more and more international actors in their films. The Tham Luang rescue was set in Thailand and touched the hearts of people across the entire nation in a special way, so we have high hopes that these actors will accurately portray our sentiment. 

For more on Thai entertainment: 

Cover images adapted from: Film Ranked (L), Pinterest, Time, Pinterest (R)

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