MAE SAI, Thailand — Director Jon M. Chu is one of the filmmakers throwing his hat in the ring to help develop a movie about the 18-day saga of the soccer team trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand.
Chu said his experience filming “Crazy Rich Asians,” a popular book-turned-film featuring a primarily Asian cast, inspired him to take on the Thai cave project.
“When you feel like you can just choose what you want to do and get it through the Hollywood studio system, which is always daunting when you’re starting, it empowers you, makes you feel like, ‘OK, what can I make a difference in cinema?’ And this Thai cave story, I was, of course, riveted like everybody else and I saw other people getting in with a specific perspective of how they are going to tell it. And I don’t know how… I’m sure all their intentions are good. I just wanted to send a message that if you’re going to make a Thai cave movie, you better know that everyone’s watching you. You better know that it’s not going to go the normal way of just having whoever you want as the heroes, that this is a global story and you should tell it in a very correct way,” he said.
Last month, Chu tweeted: “I refuse to let Hollywood #whitewashout the Thai Cave rescue story! No way. Not on our watch. That won’t happen or we’ll give them hell.”
Pure Flix Entertainment, the producers behind Christian films like “God’s Not Dead,” also have plans to develop a film about the harrowing rescue.
Chu said “it’s a little too early to talk about” where he’s at in the process and exactly what his role will be.
“It’s going to be a very cool way of telling it and who knows if I’m the right person. Who knows? I see myself as more of a steward of finding the right way to tell this and if it means me stepping away, then so be it. I’m sort of just doing the research to make sure that whoever tells it that they know they are on high alert,” he said.
Up next Chu is bringing Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical “In the Heights” to the big screen.