CHIANG RAI – A Thai film retelling the dramatic story of the Tham Luang cave rescue operation will start filming in November, the first of at least six Thai cave rescue movies, is heading to production with half-Thai filmmaker Tom Waller set to direct.
Titled “Nang Non” in Thai and “The Cave” in English, the film has been mounted by Tom Waller, a Thai filmmaker of Irish descent, who spoke to the Bangkok Post at the Toronto International Film Festival where he gave a presentation of the project to prospective foreign distributors over the weekend.
“Nang Non,” titled after the name of the mountain range and the cave in Chiang Rai where the 12 Wild Boar football team members and their coach were trapped from June 23 to July 10, is likely to be the first feature film project that materializes after at least five other producers, mostly international ones, have expressed interest in recounting the story that riveted the world.
The film will adapt the harrowing true story of 12 boys between the ages of 11-16 and their soccer coach who entered the Tham Luang cave in Thailand and became trapped after heavy rains flooded the cave. The world watched with bated breath for 18 days as efforts to save the team proved extremely difficult, and one rescuer — a former Thai Navy SEAL — died of asphyxiation.
He said the film “Nang Non” will focus on “first-person perspectives” and “unsung heroes” who took part in the rescue mission.
International sales will be handled by Wild Bunch and IMR, which introduced the project the buyers at TIFF. There’s no news yet on whether a distributor has picked up The Cave yet.