They were trapped. There was no way out. Floodwaters were rising. Both air and time was running low. Then, against all hope, divers emerged from the churning water, guiding them to safety. Almost everyone made it out alive, and the one man died, did so a hero.
And now it’s time for the book deal.
The dramatic stranding and rescue of a group of young boys and their soccer coach in a flooded cave in Thailand enthralled audiences around the world. The race has started for the rights to tell their story, both on the page and screen.
Desperate people trapped in dangerous places are cinematic gold for producers and guaranteed page-turners for publishers. Recall the thirty-three Chilean miners stuck underground for sixty-nine long days in 2010. Their official account of the events was written by a journalist to whom the miners collectively gave exclusive access while still trapped. Development of the film version started not long after the rescue ended, with the movie released in 2015.
Producers hit the ground early in Thailand, aiming for the soccer team’s life rights. The co-founder of a production company on the scene of the rescue said:
You get their stories, and then it’s a matter of making sure the writer can tell the story in a dramatic and inspirational way. At the same time, these stories still have to be entertaining and moving.
Discovery quickly ordered a documentary about the rescue once all the boys and their coach were pulled out. Operation Thai Cave Rescue will premiere Friday July 13th.
While there might not be enough substance in the events of the story to fill a 300-page book, publishers aren’t doubting there’s a million dollar deal to be made out of the harrowing events of the rescue.
“The question is whether we will we learn anything in the book that we aren’t getting in these incredibly dramatic accounts in the media,” said Jamie Raab of Celadon Books. “Months from now, will it still captivate an audience?”
Featured Image Via Wall Street Journal