Rebels of the neon god | Bangkok Post: lifestyle

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Rebels of the neon god

Bangkok kendo expert and ballet school owner Vithaya Pansringam talks about his role in one of the most expected films of the year, and attending Cannes with Ryan Gosling

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Vithaya Pansringam has the honour of beating Ryan Gosling into a sorry mess. "I feel privileged!" says the 54-year-old kendo expert, ballet school administrator and now first-bill actor of the film Only God Forgives. "Usually, Ryan beats people into a pulp _ did you see Drive? Well, this time he got it, and I got away!" 

Vithaya Pansrigram plays a mysterious ex-cop in Only God Forgives , which will premier at the Cannes Film Festival.

Gosling's magnificently bruised face, eyelids inflamed into fleshly hoods, had a near-iconic quality when the poster of the film first came out two months ago. Shortly thereafter, the international trailer _ with Thai lettering included _ was released, featuring Vithaya, Gosling and Kristin Scott Thomas in a suggestion of feverish, redemptive violence. From then on Only God Forgives has generated a huge buzz and become one of the most expected movies of the year. At this point, we're not quite sure what causes such photogenic injuries to the Gosling character, a gangster who endures a misadventure in Bangkok, but it's likely that Vithaya's has a hand in it.

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