Monday, June 7, 2004

Tom Berenger in Thailand

Tom Berenger has been in Thailand, according to Ken Ywin's Unedited Cuts column, shooting for another in the Sniper series.

The column carried brief remarks from the star, who appears much less intense in real life than his Sergeant Barnes character in Platoon. "I’ve had 30 years in this profession and I guess I manage to go with the flow. I filmed an all-American sports movie in Australia once . . . and I was the only American.”

For Sniper 3, the neighborhood around Chiang Mai's ancient landmark Thapae Gate is standing in for Ho Chi Min City. Thai signs had all been carefully concealed behind Vietnamese posters. Filming also took place in the caves in Lampang and in Bangkok.

Ken offered a rundown of some other foreign productions that have been shot in and around Thailand's Northern Capital.
  • John Carpenter's Vampires 3 is filming there right now.
  • Operation Dumbo Drop, a Vietnam War flick as only Disney can make one (but nonetheless features some stunning aerial photography and stunt work).
  • The Quest, starring Jean Claude Van Damme.
  • The Medallion, starring Jackie Chan.
  • City of Ghosts, Matt Dillon's directoral debut that was mainly filmed in and set in Cambodia.
  • Beyond Borders, starring Clive Owen and Angelina Jolie and set in the Cambodian refugee camps along the Thai border during the Pol Pot era.
  • Air America, filming for which took place at Chaing Mai Airport. Yuparaj School doubled as a drug factory and Arun Rai restaurant became the notorious White Rose Bar in Vientiane. The stars, Mel Gibson and Robert Downey Jr, also filmed in and around Mae Hong Son.
  • Heaven and Earth, Oliver Stone's epic romance drama about Vietnam.

Sniper 3
also stars Byron Mann, who was in Chiang Mai as well. Ken Ywin offers a memory refresher on Byron:

He’s an Asian-American who starred in Red Corner with Richard Gere, Street Fighter with Jean Claude van Damme, The Corruptor with Chow Yun Fat, Dark Angel with Dolph Lundgren, Belly of the Beast with Steven Seagal and Invincible with Billy Zane.

Tinseltown regards Mann as the next "big Hollywood Asian star" and yet an actor who’ll get roles whether the casting calls for an Asian or not.

An example is Mann’s role in Catwoman with Halle Berry and Sharon Stone, due out on July 31. Jet Li, Jackie Chan and Chow Yun Fat have begun to fade, while Mann’s ship has only just set sail, due to the fact he’s not typecast and is in fact very versatile.

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