The 18-day ordeal of 12 Thai boys and their soccer coach, who were rescued from a cave in the Chiang Rai province on Tuesday after an international rescue operation, is set to be recreated in a movie.
Pure Flix Entertainment is seeking the rights to develop a movie on the evacuation effort that was tracked across the world, reported Variety. Pure Flix CEO Matt Scott, who lives in Thailand part-time, has been on the scene of rescue for several days. “The bravery and heroism I’ve witnessed is incredibly inspiring, so, yes, this will be a movie for us”, Scott told The Hollywood Reporter.
On Tuesday, Discovery Channel announced a documentary on the dramatic events, which will be released on Friday.
The players from the Wild Boars Soccer team, aged 11-16 and their 25-year-old coach had hiked to the Tham Luang Nang Non cave in northern Thailand on June 23. They were trapped there after rising flood waters blocked their exit. They were discovered on June 3 and rescued after a three-day operation involving experts from several countries, including the Thai Navy Seal, the United States Indo-Pacific Command and British cave diving experts. While the evacuation was being planned, divers were supplying oxygen and food to them in the cave for several days. Saman Gunan, a 38-year-old former Thai seal, died on July 6 while making his way out of the cave after delivering air supplies.
Scott said he had spoken to some of the 90 divers involved in the rescue operation and some of the family members of boys who were trapped in the cave. “This was truly a team effort involving Brits, Aussies, Americans and Thais, and the divers told us incredibly stories,” Scott said. “They had less than five meters’ visibility, fought harsh currents and used a buddy system of two divers for each boy rescued. It was a monumental effort.”
Scott said that the story was personal for him as Kunan was his wife’s friend. “This isn’t just about a movie, it’s about honoring everybody involved, including the soldier who died,” he said.
Pure Flix Entertainment produces faith-based Christian family movies, including the God’s Not Dead franchise, the first installment of which the most successful independent film in 2014. Scott told The Hollywood Reporter he may release the movie under Pure Flix’s mainstream banner, Pinnacle Peak.