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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - New docu-drama retells the story of prosperous Angkorian eras

New docu-drama retells the story of prosperous Angkorian eras

11 pang-nath
Deputy Director-General Pang Nath. Photograph: Moa Chandaly/Phnom Penh Post

A docu-drama about the prosperous Khmer empire during the Angkorian period was posted on Facebook. As expected, it gained popularity from Facebook users because it is about Cambodia’s bright and splendid era.

Khamarak Norkor TV posted the video, which is called Wonderful Empire, on his Facebook page. Khamarak Norkor TV has posted five video clips, and each clip gained more than 1,000 likes.

Sovann Sculpture posted: “So happy to see this video showing off our Angkor Wat.”

Sophallen Cheng commented: “Wonderful architecture showed the high peak of knowledge.”

In a face-to-face interview, Deputy Director-General Pang Nath explained that the documentary film is divided into two parts. The first part, titled Angkor: The Land of Gods, is about Angkor Wat and King Suryavarman II, while the second part, Angkor Thom: The Land of Gods, is about Jayavarman VII.  

“We produced the two documentary films under the cooperation between Ministry of Information of Cambodia and of South Korea, KCC,” said Nath, who explained that the National Television of Kampuchea (TVK) and Educational Broadcasting System of South Korea (EBS) have worked together since 2010 to direct and produce the two-part docudrama.

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“First, we affiliated with Korea because of the promotion of tourism,” said Nath. He went on to say that Cambodia faced difficulties in promoting the tourism to the outside world and needed to spend much money to get international television to advertise Cambodia, but in this all, Cambodia found it easy to hype tourist sites because EBS would air the docu-drama to the world.”

In order to re-create Angkor, Khmer actors needed to be hired. Phorn, who works as a gym instructor, played King Suryavarman II because he is well-built and looked like a person from the old period. King Jayavarman VII was acted by Sisowath Sirivuth for his determined looks.

The docu-drama was aired on international TV and was also posted on YouTube. However, it has not yet been broadcasted in Cambodia.

“South Korea needs to use social media to promote the film, because it is the key to attracting human interest,” said Nang.

 “But Korea has only posted the trailer of the docu-drama on YouTube and Facebook. The thing is that maybe people in foreign countries who have already bought the docudrama have loaded it to their own YouTube accounts.”

Despite copyright issues, Nath said that he was not upset at all by the docu-drama’s presence on Facebook.

“I am not really disappointed in that Facebook page because I believe that they took the clip from YouTube and loaded it on their own page,” he said,
“But they did put their logo, the logo of Khamarak Norkor TV, in the video clip, which implies that the clip really belongs to them. Actually, it belongs to TVK.”

Nath said the docu-drama will be broadcasted later this year, depending on the ideas and promotion techniques from high-ranking officers, who may change during and after the election.

LIFT has been unable to reach Khamarak Norkor TV for comment.

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