Beautiful Boxer
Thailand 2003

Opening 25 Aug 2005

Directed by: Ekachai Uekrongtham
Writing credits:
Principal actors: Asanee Suwan, Sorapong Chatree, Orn-Anong Panyawong, Nukkid Boonthong, Sitiporn Niyom

A gorgeous man had to be found for the role of Beautiful Boxer Nong Toom, a Thai transvestite kick boxer. Director Ekachai Uekrongtham found kick boxer Asanee Suwan and after a year of acting training, he was perfect for the lead in this true story (which won him a Thai Oscar for best actor). This is a first film for both actor and director. The real Nong Toom grew up in a poor family of migrant workers. He began kick boxing in order to earn money for the family. He moved to a boxing training camp and after 20 local matches and only two losses went to the big ring in Bangkok. In spite of his muscular body he always felt like a girl. His successes and growing maturity gave him self-confidence to be himself, which meant feminine clothes, eyeliner and lipstick in the ring and privately. This didn’t square in kick boxing circles, but he gained respect by winning. He also helped his family to a comfortable life. In 1999 he decided on a sex-change operation which ended his career, because kick boxing is only open to men. She is now in her mid-20s and works in television. This film showed beautiful scenery in different locations in Thailand and had everyone sobbing with joy at one “woman’s” triumph. (Becky Tan)

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