Films

Jon M. Chu Developing Second Thai Cave Rescue Film In An Effort To Avoid Whitewashing

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The story of the successful rescue of the Thai soccer team trapped in a flooded underground cave is hot commodity in Hollywood, but Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu is determined to bring authenticity and respect to the story.

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Chu is attached to direct a film based on the news story that has captivated the world in the past week. Ivanhoe Pictures President John Penotti announced that Thailands Navy and government have selected Ivanhoe, the local-language division of SK Global, to develop the film. Ivanhoe is currently working with the most senior officials in Thailand both on provincial and national levels. Multiple studios have shown interest in the project.

The news comes a day after Pure Flix CEO and managing partner Michael Scott posted a video on Facebook saying hes eyeing to secure movie rights to the story. Chu took to Twitter to share his thoughts about making this news story into a features saying, “I refuse to let Hollywood #whitewashout the Thai Cave rescue story! No way. Not on our watch. That wont happen or well give them hell. Theres a beautiful story abt human beings saving other human beings. So anyone thinking abt the story better approach it right & respectfully.”

The feature will be based on the 12 young Thai soccer players and their 25-year-old coach who were trapped in a cave complex near the Myanmar border, some for as long as 18 days, as well as the collaborative rescue efforts between Thai Navy SEALs, government officials, and the many private companies that helped make their miraculous rescue a success.

Ivanhoe Pictures and SKEs upcoming projects include Netflixs first Indian horror series Ghoul which will debut on August 24. They also have the feature film La Caja on their slate which was developed in partnership with Mexico City-based Lucia Films. And of course, they have Chus highly anticipated Warner Bros. romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians opening on August 15.

Deadlines sister publication Variety was the first to report the news.

I refuse to let Hollywood #whitewashout the Thai Cave rescue story! No way. Not on our watch. That wont happen or well give them hell. Theres a beautiful story abt human beings saving other human beings. So anyone thinking abt the story better approach it right & respectfully.

— Jon M. Chu (@jonmchu) July 11, 2018

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