Thailand is just one of those places that should be on everyones “Must do places” from its beaches, temples, amazing food and incredibly low costs its basically a win-win.
After filming in Japan for a spell I flew into Bangkok and filmed everything from the Floating Market, Muay Thai fights to the Grand Palace. Bangkok is filled with variety and total insanity, in a good way. It's a place you go for both trouble and a place to find yourself.
After a few days I met up with the rest of the crew from Committee Films, the producer Courtney Crockett, DP Brandon Boulay and AC Eoin McGuigan. We were tasked to film a short piece for Sperry Shoes starring two members of The Shout Out Louds band, Bebban Stenborg and Ted Malmros. The objective was to film their interaction with an indigenous sea gypsy tribe, the Mokens. We travelled from Bangkok to Phuket by air and from there we had a good 10 hours more on road and sea boat. Traveling that far to meet up with Sea Gypsies close to Burma it was impossible to know what to even expect.
Once we arrived on the island we met up more a less with our fixer for the trip, Runar Jarle Wiik, a Norwegian filmmaker who had previously filmed extensively with the tribe. He was on first name basis with everyone and was practically treated like family.
We filmed Ted and Bebban and their experiences for around 5 days. It was truly enlightening to see just how simple one could live their life and be happy for what they have. The only problem that really ever came up was having to put away the big cameras, there is some unfortunate politics with the Thai government and the Moken people. They didn’t take too kindly to us filming them in a professional way, the reason alludes me but thats how it was. Runar did a great job at highlighting those issue (and still does) with Project Moken, you can look that up here; http://www.projectmoken.com.
It was a fantastic trip and a real pleasure getting to know the Moken story as well as working with new talented professionals. We of course had to film it all very sensitively narratively speaking with all of the parties involved. It can be a bit of a trap fall if you don’t project that carefully, it is advertising after all ;)