Tony Jaa returns
Tony Jaa has surfaced on television no less, and he's revealed that he hopes to finish Ong Bak 2 while at the same time raising more controversy about where the money has gone on the project.
According to press reports huge amounts of money has disappeared on the film, the studio played that down but still suggested a lot of money has been spent on the project. However Jaa denies that.
The media had been carrying reports that over 250 million Baht has been spent on the production already, and that with other production companies and investors leaving the film, the studio were rather concerned. Jaa says otherwise:
"I'm shocked at what happened…I didn't receive Baht250 million. There must be a misunderstanding over the number and I have proof of all my spending.
There are so many problems. I went away to focus on the artistic angle of the film. I make this film not with the number and figures in mind, but for its artistic quality. I invest my effort in it with almost spiritual devotion."
Actually Tony Jaa is claiming that he only ever received 117 million Baht from the studio for Ong Bak 2, and at one point during the interview broke down.
However he did apologise to the studio for the trouble he has caused the production and said that he has never forgotten the help and support of the studio. He does want to return and finish the production, however that will depend on how the studio feels.
Last we heard was that the studio were concerned for Jaa after he went missing from the set and had hired Prachya Pinkaew to complete the film in his absence, and since it was only eighty percent filmed, that might well mean completing the film without him there, something that might prove a problem without the lead actor.
Here's hoping they do let him come back to complete the film, however there's that additional question of what has happened to the rest of the budget. Jaa claims one figure while it seems double that may have been raised, a troubled production indeed. I just hope that we get the chance to see this film, particularly with the mammoth amount of martial arts work that Jaa has taken on.