Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Movie Premier December 13th





I guess in the end everything came together and this was a chance for all of us to celebrate this achievement. It was a splendid night of seeing friends, but I must admit I was so stressed to see the editing decisions that at times I could barely watch. I would have edited it differently, no doubt, but in the end I think we tied it all together pretty well. Here are some photos of the evening. BUT, I must say one editing decision baffled me, near the end of the film our 3 sexy ladies enter a van, the scene that took place in the van was hot--a cat fight between 2 Thai girls and a Japanese super model. But after the editing we only saw them enter the van. I know the action around the van was fast paced and most important, but I was still disappointed to not see the two Thai girls rough up the Japanese beauty.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

WEB SITE FOR MY BANGKOK KNOCKOUT



Check out the website. It's a nice promotional tool I think. Just can't wait to see this on the big screen. What a long process, but sitting in the theater on the night of the premier is going make it all worth it. Bangkok Knockout is coming out on December 16th. Go see the movie!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Magnolia Has Picked up Bangkok Knockout

Well teh USA will be showing Bangkok Knockout. The date has not been decided or announced yet, but the great news is that Magnolia is going to get the film out in the USA.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Promotional Event Part II


This was all done live in front of the press and done without wires. These guys are so talented. I can't wait to work with them on my next film project. PUNNA ACTION TEAM has a great future!
Bangkok Knockout opens December 16th.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Bangkok Knockout! Promotional Event!


So it was nearly 6 months ago that I was asked to come on board and write the dramatic scenes for a film that had stalled out in mid production. At the time I saw it as a project that would be a blast. When I was a kid I grew up watching Hong Kong Action films and was, like most of my generation, awed by the amazing skills and power of BRUCE LEE. When Punna called and asked for my help I was surprised when he said, "We've already shot 80% of the action, but we need you to write the entire story." What? What? You've done what? But you need what?

The action was so good he couldn't leave this stuff on the cutting room floor so my task was to not only create a story that might appeal to both a Thai and an international audience, but to make sure and weave the story around action scenes that had already been shot.

I thought my eyes were going to pop out as I finished watching the action scenes for about the 30th time. Finally I had an idea and went to work.

What we came up with is Bangkok Knockout! 

What I have taken from the experience is one of the toughest writing challenges of my life, one of the most eye opening about film and where I may play a part in it in the future, and most importantly a FAMILY atmosphere with Punna's Team that made me feel as if I had found home. After all Punna is from the rice fields of North East Thailand and I am from the corn fields of rural Nebraska. 

Check out this promotional video and COME OUT and see BANGKOK KNOCKOUT coming to theaters all over Thailand December 16th

Friday, October 15, 2010

WE are a WRAP






Levels of Death is the working ENGLISH title for this film. The best I could come up with. The Thai name is โครต โส or Kot So. It is actually in the Esson language. Anyway, the film is finished shooting and is in the editing and promotional stage. I am technically the writer, but actually was brought in half way through shooting to develop characters and more of a plot. I did what I could and enjoyed the process more than I could have imagined. I was able to bring in a number of great actors who shocked me with their talent. As the film is now it is about 30% in English and 70% in Thai and of course sub titles. I think the best part of this film was the TEAM WORK. It was a great project for combining a team of veteran Thai film makers with my team of international talent. I think we all hope this is the FIRST of MORE to come!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

During a HOT shoot the Stunt Men Wait



Hurry up and wait is the life of the actor.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Shooting Day in Thai Heat



A hot shooting day for LEVELS OF DEATH.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Blasts From the Past

Here are 2 videos that people have asked me about lately. They are probably only fun if you are a Satit Kaset Alumni, but perhaps anyone would enjoy. Both are from the year 2007.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Sound and Vision

If good film revolves around STORY. Then home video should then contrast it by being a battery of memory and senses. Just as blogging, mostly nothing more than narcissistic sentimentality, contrast that of novel writing. So I have begun putting together some simple videos that have a smattering of eclectic sound and vision. The first of these is here.
Sound and Vision, of course inspired by David Bowie.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Little Friends


Okay so I have not been sleeping and this little guy came to visit me and discuss human and insect relations. As he pointed out it is a bit of a one sided conflict actually. He left me with his dance and I believe I have new appreciation for crawly things.

Monday, July 5, 2010

IP 12 Class

My kids in IP 12 are nerdy. I shot this video during their free time. I had expected them to all be playing around, but they surprised me--almost. 

Punna Stunt Team Thailand

Well I have been very quiet since the very difficult RED SUMMER. But life goes on. I have been brought into a team of film makers here in Thailand who are truly amazing. I was asked about 6 months ago to write a screen play for Punna the action director of such hits as Ombak, II, III, and many films before that. I wrote a few treatments for him that he turned down for budget reasons, but he liked the style of my visual script writing. Finally we came to my idea about TRUST and he believed in the story enough to want to make it.

We are just getting under way, but the great thing is he is putting together a team of all-star movie makers to do this project. I am just the writer, but he's allowing me to come on board and learn movie making from the best. Here is a video of Punna in action. 


Saturday, May 22, 2010

BBC Has A Nice Piece about Bangkok

CLICK on the TITLE to go to the BBC article. I think they chose some good people to interview.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thai Cats Jumping



One interesting element of being trapped in our houses during this political unrest is that we are getting a lot of home time. This video is of Nan training with Black and Coffee our two cats. Coffee is the leaper and Black is the heavy cat who can't get off the ground. With the malls closed in Thailand, which means movie theaters, restaurants, shops, bowling, well just about everything, who knows how much we may all learn about ourselves. 

Soldiers on Vipawadee Road Bangkok


This video was shot on my way home from the store. The soldiers are searching for Red Shirts who are now on the run after the destruction of their camp down town. On their way out of the city they have burned down Asia's 2nd largest mall along with some 35 plus other buildings and businesses. The tension has not been relieved, but is instead spreading to the outer provinces. It is still not safe to come to Thailand.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Too Much Blood in Bangkok





The Death toll has reached 65. Protesters loyal to former PM Thaksin have created the closest thing to a civil war Thailand has had in the modern era. Tonight, I sit typing this about a 30 minutes drive from the Red fortifications. On Vipawadee road outside my neighborhood soldiers with machine guns and shot guns patrol check points marked with swirls of barbed wire. As theatrical a scene I have never experienced first hand.
Still, most of us are going on about our day. I sat on my roof which looks out over the north side of Bangkok and other than the occasional sound of chirping birds I felt as if the city was sleeping. It is not, of course, in a state of rest. Truly the nation is a state of rebellion. Bangkok is the thrust of this movements attention, but cities outside the capital are also experiencing bombings, protests, and bloodshed.
I have always believed Thai people are the most peaceful on the planet. Their very nature is one of acceptance and tolerance, and yet the current stand off and escalating violence has proven to me that humans by nature are incapable of true peace.
I am not going to talk about what side did what. The sins of the many sides involved in this are mounting daily. What needs to be done is mediation and a serious look at the causes of protesters and government leaders. Most of us trapped in this ugly situation are scratching our heads as to the true requests and desires of all sides. When I listen to the government accept demand after demand by the Reds they seem far too wimpy for my American upbringing. Let's face it no such rebellion against the rich would be tolerated in the USA, look at the LA riots. You can burn a ghetto but don't head to Beverly Hills or you'll be met with tanks.
I come from the farm land of the US and so I do feel a sad kinsmen-ship for these REDS as they are mostly rice farmers, but I can't get a grip on what it is that they want the government to do. And I am tired of the fighting and disruptions they have caused my city. Protest if you want to, but from what they have been saying they did not come here to protest, they came here to martyr themselves and create chaos. How will they sway the people of Bangkok with this mindset. This only spreads fear and we are seeing now what fear brings -- 65 dead.
The photos I'm putting on here are AMAZING and I am taking them from the AP folks. These make me sad and I hope will let everyone who checks in on me through this blog see this tragedy unfolding in my adopted home.
We are currently excepting all prayers by all faiths!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Sadly it seems Bangkok is Getting Too Dangerous


The New York Times article about the situation can be accessed by clicking on the title. Basically it is a travel advisory saying, it is time to cancel your trip to Thailand. 

I have always had a lot of faith in the peaceful nature of Thai people during this stand off of political and cultural rivals, but it does appear that Bangkok is no longer safe. 

There are efforts being made to bring an end to this ugly political turmoil; however, both sides have been suffering and my fear is that neither side is ready to stop the acts of violence that have been spinning off from the protesting. In truth the demands of the Red Shirts are so extreme it seems they are demanding a violent answer to their violent protesting. This is terrible for both sides. 

Both sides need to stay calm and try to do their best to reign in the violent elements who have become far too vocal during the past few weeks. 

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

MOM Siminoe WINS Service Award from UNSTA-NCTA

Elaine Simionoe Receiving her Service Award.



When I called MOM to ask her about this award she was very humble saying that she probably did not deserve it, but it was very nice of them to choose her. She said it is great to see all of the growth happening at the Curtis campus. Certainly Dad would have been very proud to see his school growing. For those who don't know, Bill Siminoe was the first Dean of University of Nebraska School of Technical Agriculture which was best known as UNSTA. Bill was in charge there for 27 years and built the foundation for this agriculture based branch of the University of Nebraska. I grew up on this campus and if I was to sum it up I would describe it as the place where farm and ranch kids could come to learn about modern techniques in their field. It was a splendid place to grow up and it is wonderful to see that my father's hard work and dream is still alive. 

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Here Come the Reds


For everyone in the city this weekend, The Red Shirt protests could become a crisis situation from Mar. 12 to Mar. 14, 2010.
Please avoid The danger routes on Mar 12, 2010

The United Front for Democracy ( Red shirt ) against Dictatorship plans to organise a mass rally in Bangkok. They will set up 6 Speech Stages in BKK.
Mar 12 At 12 p.m. the Northernerns will move to gather at Nakornsawan province, the North Eastern  people will move to gather at Nakornratchasima province, the Eastearners and the Westerners will then move to BKK early on the morning of Mar 14.
Mar 12 The Red shirts will set up a Speech Stage in BKK in the 6 areas as follows :
1. Pitak Ratthathammanuun Monument or Prahp-go-bod monument,
over tunnel direct to Bang kayn zone
2. Tong-Song-Hong Station area, Gam-paeng-pet 7 Road
3. Bangna Junction, Bangna Zone
4. Rama VI Monument, Lumpini park area
5. Thai-Japanese Stadium Din Daeng, gate 2, Mit- mat-tree road
6. Pra-jao-taksin Monument area or Wong Wianyai Circular Junction, Thonburi zone

Big Trouble in Bangkok


The word is spreading quickly through the city of Bangkok and the nation of Thailand that this new round of protests by the Taksin supporters, who wear the red and side vaguely with the communist element, are going to get ugly. My school has already announced that classes will be canceled Friday in order to keep students and staff safe. 

You might wonder why would there be such a fear considering we have had protests going on for years here, well the answer is a simple one. Weapons have been stolen in a region of Thailand that is known to be loyal to the Taksin Reds. So perhaps the word STOLEN is not really the correct one. When weapons go missing at the same time as 100's of thousands of poor uneducated people are streaming to the capital to protest, fear will spread. 

It really doesn't matter if you are a red supporter or a yellow supporter or one of the millions of neutrals in this country, it is obvious that when you mix a mob of uneducated (nothing to lose) poor with whiskey paid for by their ousted leader, and weapons such as hand grenades and automatic weapons, the fear is well founded. 

The last time this mob got out of hand they tried to ram a police barricade with a bus loaded full of gasoline. This act could have resulted in a multitude of deaths and a plethora of retribution, but lucky the bus missed its mark. 

Thailand is known for peaceful protesting. The nation has had the best history of diplomacy in S.E. Asia, so we must hope that the past repeats itself here and that everyone -- yellow, red, blue, and neutral -- all are safe. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Video from Pat and Poom's Day


I would like to apologize for not capturing more of the wedding on video. I really was having too much fun to be a good photographer. I only did the chanting with the monks and the short parade, but of course at Thai weddings there are many events that are done. My favorite is the BED CEREMONY, where elder members of the party show the young couple just how it is done. It is a lot of fun. Sadly, at this wedding, they stopped after the poring of the water from the shell to bless the bride and groom. Too bad really, I'm getting old enough that I could have been of some assistance in the bed ceremony. 

Monday, February 22, 2010

Pat and Poom Wedding Part 1



Saturday February 20th, in the month of love, two of my closest friends in Bangkok decided to make it official and get married. We have all known, for a long time, that this union would be a special one. The wedding was held at an amazing Thai traditional venue and the feeling of love filled the air. Both Pat and Poom are very social people by both nature and occupation, so it was not surprising the guests were numerous and lively. Of course, when you offer an open bar with Jack Daniels, vodka and red wine, you will certainly draw a crowd. But truthfully, everyone was there to support and celebrate with this lovely couple. I have spent the last 8 New Years Eves with Pat and the last 4 with Poom, it is one of my favorite traditions. Now I'm excited that we have an anniversary to celebrate as well. I'll put together some video to follow in the coming days. Congratulations to Poom and Pat!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Random Photos of 2010



These are some random photos from the 2010 thus far. Life has been busy with friends , visitors and local travel.

2010 Too Much Happening

Well in truth it has been a crazy start to 2010. By the way happy New Year to all my Chinese Friends. I really have not made time to blog or update this blog over the last few months and part of the reason is a lack of motivation coupled with a lack of feedback on most of the things I post. If you have any reaction to any of my dribble, please comment and perhaps I'll get a bit more interested to cover the news of Thailand and my X-Pat experience. 

I must say that 2010 is off to a very good start. I have been meeting a lot with people in the Thai film industry and enjoying connecting with fellow film enthusiasts. Of course they come from the perspective of making films and I come from the perspective of studying and teaching film. Still they are very respectful and curious about the film world outside of Thailand. I am learning a lot about the way film is made here in Bangkok. I must say, it is very exciting world. 

So currently I am working with an outstanding director, stunt coordinator, writer, and producer by the name of Panna.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panna_Rittikrai  if you would like to take a look at his amazing occomplishments. 

His best attribute is developing talent in the world of martial arts action stars. Currently he has two of the best in Asia in Tony Jaa and Jeeja. I'll post some videos of these two later. 

So for anybody who is out there reading I'll try to get a bit more connected to the internet and throw a few more Thai bits of news up. 

HAPPY 2010 and Happy year of the TIGER