Last week, saw the start to the three-day long Thai Film Festival at BAFTA on Piccadilly. The festival, put on by Thailand’s Ministry of Culture, aimed to highlight Thailand as an emerging epicenter for filmmaking in Asia. The festival’s seven featured films – ranging from romantic comedies to horror – showcased the breadth of films coming out of Thailand today and the marriage of tradition and modernity in Thai art.
The festival kicked off with a special screening of “The Teacher’s Diary” (2014), a lauded film that won six awards at the Thailand National Film Association Awards, including Best Screenplay and Best Cinematography. It’s a heartwarming film about two young teachers – Ann (Laila Boonyasak) and Song (Sukrit Wisetkaew) – who work at the same rural school just a year apart. When “Khrū Song” begins teaching, he’s shocked by the difficulties of living and working on a boat-turned-school; everything looks like it’ll fall apart. But he soon finds a former teacher’s diary (Ann’s), which details similar trials and tribulations. The ensuing film is filled with giggles, drama, romance, and even tears as Song and Ann become united through the diary. It’s sure to draw everyone who likes a good laugh, good acting, and a great story.
Many big names were in attendance for the viewing of “The Teacher’s Diary,” including the female lead, Laila Boonyasak, and the film’s director, Nithiwat Tharathorn.
Special guests spent the night taking pictures with the guests of honor at a reception, then laughing the night away in BAFTA’s theater.
We had the lucky honor to ask director Nithiwat Tharathorn a few questions about the film and his experience directing in general. This wasn’t Nithiwat Tharathorn’s first film – he graduated from one of Bangkok’s best film schools, Chulalongkorn University, before directing his first film in 2003, “My Girl.” Check out what he has to say about his experiences below.