Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cannes 2010: Van Damme promotes Muay Thai bout, takes beating over Eagle Path

The Muscles from Brussels, Jean-Claude Van Damme, is at the Cannes Film Festival, promoting his latest film, The Eagle Path, as well as his upcoming kickboxing match with Somluck Kamsing and talking about his reality-TV series.

The boxing match, originally announced back in January, will see JCVD get in the ring with Somluck, Thailand's first Olympic gold medalist. The fight is set for October, in either Las Vegas or Dallas.

Somluck won the gold in the 1996 Summer Olympics in the men's featherweight category. Since then, he has appeared in movies and even made a pop album. He co-starred in Panna Rittikrai's Born to Fight, in which a village of national athletes from various sports take on a Burmese druglord's army. Somluck also appeared in Jet Li's Fearless in a scene that was originally omitted from the international release but restored for the director's cut. And he's in Soi Cowboy, playing a gangster.

He's also run a barbecue restaurant that left him with "only burnt ribs", The Nation's Soopsip gossip column says today.

According the Somluck, there'll be no elbows thrown.

“They don’t want [Van Damme's] face to get bruised,” he told Siam Sports, according to Soopsip.

In Cannes, Van Damme appeared at the Marché du Film to push The Eagle Path, an action drama he filmed a year or more ago in Bangkok. The story is set in a seedy non-descript east Asian city that isn't Bangkok. Van Damme plays a taxi driver haunted by his past.

The Wrap has a look at what happened at the Cannes Film Market screening, which had "programmers and buyers scratching their heads". Anyone who wanted to leave before it was over couldn't, because Van Damme blocked the doors. Pundits say Van Damme has wasted the goodwill and critical acclaim he built up with his self-deprecating action drama JCVD.

(Photo via Canoe)

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