Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy

Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy

The following story is from 2014 when Cambodian Productions main fixer, Richard John Currie, was working with a different production company on the project below. There are hundreds of television shows available to audiences today and producers struggle to come up with original concepts which will entice people to tune in every week. The creators of “50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy” have certainly come up with an original concept that keeps the audience hooked every week. Take a mother and son team, let them travel the world together and allow them to participate in a series of adventurous activities which will test the mother’s longevity. Burning Bright Productions are the creative team behind the popular television show and for the second series they wanted to look at exotic locations in SE Asia, mainly Cambodia. When I was initially contacted by Burning Bright Productions they expressed an interest in Cambodia but were unsure exactly what activities could be filmed for the new episode. Upon reading the brief, which included a list of adventures that the mother and son duo participated in during the last series, I met with my team and started to discuss ideas. BBP gave us one piece of guidance for the activities; be as adventurous as possible and try not to rule anything out. Cambodia is a country which oozes adventure and excitement so the suggestions came thick and fast, within ten minutes we had 100 suggestions ranging from feasible to ludicrous. Upon receiving the list BBP narrowed down the suggestions to the activities which would give the most entertaining footage; catching and eating tarantulas in...

Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: Nightcrawlers of Phnom Penh

Hundreds of production companies have ventured to Cambodia over the past 20 years, filming everything from documentaries to commercials, feature films and music videos. The common thread these film makers all share is that they all had unique experiences whilst filming in the Kingdom of Wonder. Back in 2015 a group of film makers working with Hunger TV decided to film a short documentary in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The documentary was about a group of freelance reporters called “nightcrawlers” who spend their nights pursuing footage of victims of crimes or crash crashes. Below is an interview with directors Max Cutting, James Dougan & Dan Ridgeon, who talked about the experience they had whilst filming their documentary in Cambodia. When did you first discover this topic and why did you want to shoot a documentary about it? We first started discussing the idea of making a documentary about nightcrawlers in January of last year. A close friend of ours is a journalist working for a paper in Phnom Penh and he sent us an article that a colleague of his had written on the same subject. We thought that there was potential for an interesting story with strong characters so we started doing more research. In addition to finding out what the job actually entails we wanted to give an insight into why these journalists do what they do and how the work has affected them. What challenges did you face shooting in a foreign country with a different language? This was our first foreign language documentary and our first documentary shot abroad so naturally there was a steep learning...
Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: River Monsters

Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: River Monsters

The following story is from 2014 when Cambodian Productions main fixer, Richard John Currie, was working with a different production company on the project below. Usually when you are contacted by an international production company they have a clear idea of exactly who or what they want to film, this makes it easier for you to organise the logistical side of the production. But in some cases the production company only comes with an idea or a concept and it’s up to the fixer to research the idea and help develop story lines for the production company before they arrive in Cambodia to film. This was exactly the situation when I was contacted by Icon Films who were looking for an exciting story line for the new episode of the popular television show River Monsters. The initial email from Icon Films contained only a scanned newspaper article from the Phnom Penh Post (the main source of local news in the countries capitol). The article told the story of a young boy in Kandal Province (just north of Phnom Penh) who was viciously attacked by a puffer fish while he swam in a local river. Icon Films were fascinated by the incident and wondered if it was possible to use this puffer fish incident as the basis for the new series of River Monsters. I was immediately interested in working on this high profile production and agreed to do some preliminary research to help develop the story line and see if we could find some leads regarding the attack. The first step in the research was to try and find...
Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: Introduction and the Emigrants

Cambodia Film Fixer Chronicles: Introduction and the Emigrants

This is the first in a series of blogs featuring Cambodian Productions very own production coordinator, Richard Currie, and his experience of being a fixer in Cambodia. Richard has worked for several Cambodian based production companies on a freelance basis, and his CV features programmes such as Naked and Afraid, River Monsters, Expedition Unknown and 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy. As a fixer in Cambodia your life is never predictable, one minute you’re drinking a cup of tea in the office and answering emails the next minute you’re speeding off to Mondulkiri on a location recce for a new television show. Being a fixer can be challenging, stressful, exasperating and difficult. But at the end of the day its fun and that’s why we do it. The Emigrants It was December 29th 2015, just a few days shy of the New Year, and Cambodian Productions was winding down for the day. We had completed a few big jobs this year and, with a few productions in the pipeline, we were getting ready for another successful year in 2016. Outlook made the usual ping to signify the arrival of a new email and that started our involvement on this new production. Getting a new email from a production company is always an exciting moment for a fixer and you have to establish the four W’s very quickly (who, what, where and when). Who: A production company called ATM Grupa SA from Poland. What: They want to shoot a television show called “The Emigrants” in Cambodia. Where: Sihanoukville and Koh Rong Sanloem. When: 15th January 2015 As a fixer it’s always...
Film Fixers in Cambodia

Film Fixers in Cambodia

Filming in a foreign country can present a host of challenges to even the most experienced international film crews. From research to location permits, transportation and accommodation, it’s a potential headache during the pre-production stage. If you are wanting to film in Cambodia it’s very important that you partner up with a local production company that has the necessary experience to help plan and coordinate your shoot, this is where Cambodian Productions can step in and utilise our team of experienced fixers to ensure that everything is set up when you touch down. The local fixer will be your eyes and ears on the ground in Cambodia, your link to the foreign land and its people. During the pre-production and production phase your fixer is arguably the most important part of your production team and we only work with the best and most experienced fixers in Cambodia. The fixers on our team have worked with on high profile shows such as River Monsters, Naked and Afraid, Expedition Unknown and Survivor and they receive high praise at the end of each production. Get in touch with Cambodian Productions now and find out how we can utilise our team of experienced fixers to help make your shoot in a Cambodia a smooth and trouble free experience. Contact us by email info@cambodianproductions.com or if you have a more urgent enquiry you can phone us directly on +855 (0)78 572...
A Brief History of Film Making in Cambodia

A Brief History of Film Making in Cambodia

As the production crew for Tomb Raider sat in America brainstorming ideas for their latest box office hit, they stared at a photo book of Angkor Wat lying on the coffee table in front of them. “They looked at it and said ‘let’s go there’,” says Nick Ray, a local location scout. “It hadn’t been done before,” says Ray. “There was no road map; we had to meet with the ministers to explain why this was good for Cambodia.” The filming of Tomb Raider in 2000 was undoubtedly Cambodia’s “big break” in the movie world, with the intriguing temple of Ta Prohm forming the backdrop for the big screen blockbuster. “it was the film that showed Hollywood it could be done. It surprised people in the industry,” says Ray. Matt Dillon followed hot on Tomb Raider’s tail, setting and filming his 2002 film, City of Ghosts, in the Kingdom. This was the first time since before the war that a major American film used Cambodia as its principal location, with Richard Brooks’ Lord Jim being the last in 1965. Jean-Jacques Annaud was up next, using Cambodia as the backdrop for about three quarters of his film, Two Brothers, shipping in more than 30 tigers from France and Thailand. “He wanted somewhere really remote,” says Ray, recalling visiting parts of Kulen Mountain and Preah Vihear that were still littered with landmines. A lull followed in the late 2000s, with Australian film Wish You Were Here being the next major movie to shine the spotlight on Cambodia. Set in both Australia and Cambodia – mostly Sihanoukville – it opened the 2012 Sundance...