The Beach - from FOX MOVIES
The Beach - On Location
The Beach -- The film-makers for The Beach
scouted locations in Australia, Malaysia and the Philippines before finally settling on
Thailand. Phi Phi Le island, in southern Thailand, was the main reason. Maya Bay was
perfect with its cliffs enclosing it on three sides. Nearby Phuket island was chosen as
the main base as it has an international airport and a film studio. Other locations
included neighboring Krabi and Khao Yai National Park, north-east of Bangkok. Principal
Photography took place in four main locations between January 15th and April 24th 1999.
About the Movie
The wonders of modern technology, like
computers, video games, cell phones, pagers and the Internet, were designed to make our
lives more enjoyable and facilitate communications. Yet for many, the complexity of the
digital world is overwhelming, leading to a feeling of unreality ... of being
The desire to find something real - to connect with something or someone - is what drives
Richard (Leonardo DiCaprio), a young American backpacker who arrives in Thailand with
adventure on his mind. Travel, he asserts, is the search for experience, the quest for
|At a cheap hotel in Bangkok, Richard meets a French couple, Etienne (Guillaume Canet) and
Francoise (Virginie Ledoyen).
He also encounters Daffy (Robert Carlyle), an older traveler
ravaged by years of sun and drugs.
Rambling and paranoid, Daffy tells Richard the
improbable tale of a secret island, a paradise on earth: the perfect beach, unsullied by
The next day, Richard finds a piece of paper pinned to his door. It is a hand-drawn map of
the island described by Daffy. This, Richard realizes, may be the "something
different" he has been looking for. He goes to find Daffy only to discover his
corpse, the crazed man's wrists slit by his own hand.
Richard persuades Francoise and Etienne to join him and they set off on a journey,
following Daffy's map. To get to "the beach" they must risk their lives by
swimming across an open sea from one island to another, crawling past armed guards and
jumping from the top of a 120-foot waterfall. Reaching their destination, they find a
small community of travelers like themselves, living in secret. They are welcomed into the
group, and the island paradise becomes their home, sapping them of all will to return to
the world they knew before.
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Yet beneath the surface, this heaven on earth is less than perfect. Personal conflict and
petty jealousy ferment to create a violent rivalry, and a series of tragic events
fragments the community. Increasingly isolated and disturbed, Richard finds himself more
than witness to an incident of blood-shed. The dream has become a nightmare; paradise has
turned to hell. Now his only goal is to leave. But escape will not be easy, for the beach
is a secret place, a secret that some will defend to the death.
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO (Richard) has achieved the
rare combination of critical praise and audience accolades. He was recognized with an
Academy Award nomination and Golden Globe® Award for his work in "Whats Eating
Gilbert Grape." DiCaprio was voted Best Supporting Actor by the National Board of
Review for "Whats Eating Gilbert Grape" and "This Boys
Life," and was given the New Generation Award for both films by the Los Angeles Film
Critics Association. Additionally, the New York Film Critics Association and the National
Society of Film Critics voted him runner-up for Best Supporting Actor of the Year.
DiCaprio also received a Golden Globe® nomination for James Camerons
"Titanic," Blockbuster nominations for his work in both Baz Luhrmanns
"William Shakespeares Romeo + Juliet" and "Titanic," and MTV
nominations for "William Shakespeares Romeo + Juliet."
DiCaprios other film credits include
"The Basketball Diaries," "The Quick and the Dead," "Total
Eclipse," "The Man in the Iron Mask" and a cameo role in Woody Allens
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