We knew he'd be casting locals for the next installment in his Rambo franchise, John Rambo, but apparently Sylvester Stallone wants this film to be as realistic as possible. According to a Reuters story, a retired rebel soldier from the jungles of eastern Myanmar has been cast to play a brutal Burmese officer in the pic, due out next year. 40 year-old Sai Mawng is an ex-guerrilla from the Shan State Army; he "speaks Burmese fluently and looks nasty enough," so says one of his close friends.
300 applicants originally turned out to audition for the part, which asked for a "Burmese male, 32-40, military-looking man, character face, unlikeable." I assume Mawng looks unlikeable enough; let's just hope he doesn't snap during one of his scenes -- re-living some of those nasty past memories -- and annihilate the entire crew. This time around, John Rambo comes out of retirement for one last mission: to locate a group of missionary aid workers who have disappeared into the jungles of Myanmar ... and, in the end, kick a whole lot of ass.
Apart from the casting of a real-life retired rebel soldier, a bunch of Shan refugees and migrants have been cast as Burmese soldiers in the flick, with each being paid a whopping 300 baht ($8.50) per day for their work. Granted, I'm sure that's a nice chunk of change for these guys, but it is a bit, um, cheap. Also starring alongside Stallone will be James Brolin, Bruno Campos, Kim Dickens and Matt Marsden. Production is currently underway.