Veteran director Nonzee Nimibutr is an ever-present fixture at most film-industry functions in Thailand and around the region.
Fellow "Thai new wave" filmmaker Pen-ek Ratanaruang commented as much when Nonzee handed him his Best Director trophy for Headshot at the recent Subhanahongsa Awards. "Phi Oui is always at these events!" Pen-ek quipped, referring to Nonzee by his nickname.
Nonzee was even among the industry figures who were guests at the recent wedding of martial-arts star Tony Jaa.
But it's been awhile since Nonzee, director of such films as Daeng Bireley's and Young Gangster and Nang Nak, has had a feature in cinemas. In fact, it's been since 2008's swashbuckling fantasy epic Queens of Langkasuka, a.k.a. Legend of the Tsunami Warrior.
His latest release Distortion (คน-โลก-จิต, Kon-Loke-Jit) is in Thai cinemas this week. It's a psychological thriller in which four characters, a psychologist, a scientist, a businessman and a student, somehow become involved a serial-murder case.
There's longer versions of the synopsis around the Web, but my instinct is to stay away from those.
There's also an English-subtitled trailer, embedded below.
Sarunyu Prachakrit, Boonyisa “Poppy” Chantrarachai (first runner up Miss World Thailand 2012), Artit Wiboonpanitch, Arpa Pawilai and Suchao Pongwilai star.
In kind of a weird move, Nonzee himself appeared on early international teaser posters for the movie. It's being released by his Cinemasia production marque under Sahamongkol Film International and was pitched in the Asian Project Market at last year's Busan fest.
Meanwhile, Nonzee has thrown his support behind director ML Bhandevanop "Mom Noi" Devakula's planned remake of his 2001 erotic drama Jan Dara. It'll star Mario Maurer as the title character, marking a departure from Nonzee's version which had two actors playing Jan from boyhood to adulthood.