Hanuman Films Blog

A proven track record of production success in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam and across the Southeast Asia region

On Holiday With Your Dad

‘Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father’ Out Now on Netflix.

Hanuman Films worked as the local film servicing partner for the new Netflix series ‘Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father’ in Cambodia back in March 2017. The show is out now on Netflix and Cambodia features in Episodes 4 and 5 of the 6-part series, that also includes Thailand and Vietnam.

Nick Ray worked as Fixer on the shoot and has a couple of cameos in the Cambodia sequences, including the predictable travel writer at Angkor Wat and the rather less predictable demining expert at a minefield being cleared by NGO Apopo using Gambian pouched rats to sniff out the TNT.

“Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father follows the Brit comedian as he finishes the gap year he began in 2009 and had to cut short. Only this time, his travel companion is his unadventurous father Michael. They travel to odd locations and events in an attempt to strengthen their bond.”

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K4PihmWMaSI&feature=youtu.be

The Last Reel Wins ‘Best Narrative Feature’ at Film Festival in the US

The Last Reel brings home its first American award from Long Beach, Los Angeles, California, USA.

The Last Reel Award Best Narrative Feature Award

The Last Reel Award Best Narrative Feature Award

This weekend saw the Cambodia Town Film Festival at the Art Theatre, Long Beach and the The Last Reel was honoured as the ‘Best Narrative Feature’ or the best feature film at this year’s festival. The lead actors were all on hand to collect the award in person, including Dy Saveth, Ma Rynet, Sok Sothun, Hun Sophy and Ros Mony, plus Producer Nick Ray. The legendary Dy Saveth picked up a ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ for her contribution to the Cambodian film industry, making it a double header for The Last Reel.

Dy Saveth Lifetime Achievement Award

Dy Saveth Lifetime Achievement Award

‪The Last Reel‬ screened to a sellout audience of 380 as the opening film of the 3rd Cambodia Town Film Festival on Saturday 5 September. After a moving screening, the cast and crew went on stage for a Q & A with the festival organisers.

Many thanks to the Cambodian-American community in Long Beach for their incredible hospitality which included taking the actors on a tour of the Hollywood ‘Walk of Fame’ on Friday and a tour of Long Beach sights on Sunday, including the Aquarium of the Pacific and the venerable Queen Mary.

The Last Reel Cast on the Queen Mary, Long Beach

The Last Reel Cast on the Queen Mary, Long Beach

There were also lots of social events by night, including a ‘Meet the Filmmakers’ evening at Thunder Studios, an opening party at landmark Sophy Restaurant, a ‘rom vong’ session at Legends Seafood Restaurant and an on-on to the even more legendary Dragon House nightclub, made famous by the Dengue Fever album, ‘Enter the Dragon House’.

Ros Mony and Ma Rynet on the Walk of Fame

Ros Mony and Ma Rynet on the Walk of Fame

A huge thanks to all those involved in the Cambodia Town Film Festival, including Festival Directors Caylee So and praCh Ly, and all the members of the festival committee who chose The Last Reel as the ‘Best Narrative Feature’. Thanks also to the army of volunteers helping with the event who helped ensure the actors had an incredible time in Long Beach and Los Angeles. The welcome and friendship was very much appreciated by all those involved in The Last Reel. They will never forget the experience.

Dy Saveth Ma Rynet Yeak Attack

Dy Saveth Ma Rynet Yeak Attack

Thank you also to the all-important sponsors who made CTFF 2015 possible and managed to assist with funding the actors to join this celebration of Cambodian film, including the US Embassy in Phnom Penh, the Nancy Lee Show in Los Angeles and the Cambodia Town Film Festival team. And Hanuman Films of course, who coordinated the whole trip.

Looking Back on Tomb Raider: 15 Years After the Circus Came to Town

In the first of our retrospective look backs on shoots we have hosted in Southeast Asia, we turn the clock back 15 years to the Millennium when Angelina Jolie, Daniel Craig and the Tomb Raider crew came to Angkor.

 

Tomb Raider was the first major Hollywood film to shoot in Cambodia since Peter O’Toole starred in Lord Jim in 1964. The Tomb Raider crew were all set to travel to China to film the Terracotta Army coming to life, when the sequence was pulled at the last minute, as it had already been featured in a Chinese movie. Cambodia was next on the list and Hanuman Films was chosen for scouting at Angkor. Following a successful scout with a full technical crew, Paramount British Pictures appointed Hanuman Films as their local servicing partner in the Kingdom of Cambodia. Our previous experience involved shooting the Lonely Planet TV Cambodia episode with Presenter Ian Wright and a crew of five!

Kulikar Sotho worked as Local Liason Manager, or Line Producer, arranging all filming permissions, script approval, temporary import/re-export of equipment, visas, accommodation, transport and catering for the production. Nick Ray worked as Location Manager on the film, selecting locations for the shoot, building a photographic inventory of the temples used in shooting, approving all sets or alterations to be made at each site and working with local authorities every step of the way to ensure this first sensitive shoot at Angkor passed without incident.

Hanuman Films also took responsibility for recruitment ofa large team of translators, hundreds of extras, site security and an army of labourers.

Tomb Raider premiered on June 15th 2001 at Mann’s Theatre in Los Angeles. Nick and Kulikar were both invited to the premiere and stayed with Producer Lloyd Levin.

Notable milestones passed during production included:

  1. Securing the support of the Council of Ministers for the project to go ahead, despite some high level objections;
  2. Obtaining permission to build a traditional floating village on the royal pond at Angkor Wat;
  3. Getting nine containers over the roads from hell in the middle of the wet season, taking five days for the trucks to cover just 320km;
  4. Juggling the shooting schedule around the state visit of President Jiang Zemin of China and King Norodom Sihanouk to Angkor;
  5. Arranging the safe arrival of 30 or so servicing vehicles from Thailand, another nightmare journey that required two army units to build bridges along the way.

Locations: Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm temple, Phnom Bakheng, East Gate of Angkor Thom, Bayon, Phnom Kulen

Actors: Angelina Jolie, Daniel Craig, hundreds of local extras, the temples of Angkor

Lonely Planet Unplugged: Behind the Scenes Video of Hotel Inspections in Laos

Hanuman Films Location Manager Nick Ray was recently working in Laos on a new edition of the best-selling Lonely Planet guidebook, out this month. This video takes readers behind the scenes to show them how LP goes about selecting the best places to stay.

The video starts with Nick inspecting the memorable Luang Say Lodge in Pak Beng. His cameraman colleague Andy Richardson then takes a look at the Xayana Guesthouse, also known as the X3 Capsule Hotel to see the dormitory options on offer in Luang Prabang. At the other extreme, Nick checks out the stunning La Residence Phou Vao, one of the most luxurious properties in all of Laos. Andy then gets to sample some style with a visit to Le Sen Boutique Hotel, one of the best all-rounders in Luang Prabang. They finish up at Villa Suan Mark, a family-run flashpacker pad with a great atmosphere.

Warning: these videos were made by toilet-humour obsessed Brits and several uncensored toilets appear throughout the video.

The Elephant Conservation Center in Laos

Check out this video put together by together by Nick Ray and Andy Richardson during a recent Lonely Planet research trip through Northern Laos for the new Laos Lonely Planet guidebook, out in bookshops now.

Nick was covering Luang Prabang and Northern Laos for new 8th edition of the Laos guidebook. The Elephant Conservation Center was one of the standout new additions for the latest book, located in Sayaboury Province in the far west of the country. A new bridge and road link means it is just two hours from Luang Prabang.

Nick Ray and Andy Richardson studied at the University of Warwick together back in the 1990s and have since had the opportunity to work together on several filming assignments for Lonely Planet and other leading global brands.

Get Behind the Scenes with the New Lonely Planet Laos Guidebook

Nick Ray, Location Manager for Hanuman Films, worked on the new edition of the bestselling Lonely Planet Laos guidebook, out in bookstores now. This video takes readers behind the scenes on some of the adventures on the road.

 

  This video takes viewers on a journey through the Land of a Million Elephants with Nick Ray and Andy Richardson. Starting on the mighty Mekong River, the journey includes Luang Prabang, Vientiane and the new Elephant Conservation Center near Sayaboury.

  Nick was covering Luang Prabang and Northern Laos for new 8th edition of the Laos guidebook.  Nick travelled with Director and Cameraman Andy Richardson, an old friend going back to the days they studied at the University of Warwick together.

  They have since had the opportunity to work together on several filming assignments for Lonely Planet and other leading global brands and have a new Youtube channel called Electric Explorers.

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