Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Thailand's next top catfighter

There's a reality-style TV show on in Thailand called The Acting Queen, in which 12 aspiring actresses scream, scratch and claw at each other, eliminating the weakest until one stands alone and is guaranteed a place in the pantheon of Thai cinema and television.

The Bangkok Post has a story about it, including an interview with the show's host, Marsha Wattanapanich, the veteran singer-actress who contemporary Thai cinema fans might recognize from the GTH horrors Alone and Phobia 2.

The panel of judges includes Ong-Bak and Chocolate producer-director Prachya Pinkaew, who directed the actresses in a stunt scene in which they were "fighting bad guys [then] escaping a bomb explosion and calmly walking away from a wall of fire, captured by five cameras." He's looking for a movie star:

"The TV show aims to find a new face for the Thai movie industry, which lacks magnet stars. Unfortunately, the industry is not big enough to have actresses dedicated to playing only movies," said Prachya. "Hollywood, on the other hand, has Angelina Jolie, Scarlett Johansson and Emma Watson who guarantee box office success. Here, it's often the name of the director that attracts movie-goers. But we hope that the industry will grow bigger so that one day we will have our own league of movie actresses."

They try their hand at various genres. Other directors creating scenes for the contestants have included Nonzee Nimibutr, Guan Muen Ho and Shutter helmer Banjong Pisanthanakul, Kongkiat Khomsiri (Slice, Muay Thai Chaiya) and Poj Arnon.

Chookiat Sakveerakul directed a horror segment involving loads of maggot-like worms being dumped on the women. There's a YouTube clip showing them all screaming.

The Acting Queen finale will be broadcast on February 13 on Modernine.

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