20th Century Fox Pays for Damages in ‘The Beach’ Location


Two Decades Later: 20th Century Fox Pays THB10 Million to Rehabilitate Maya Bay

More than 20 years after “The Beach,” the Environmental Cases Division of Thailand’s Supreme Court upheld a 2019 compromise agreement in which the 20th Century Studios, formerly known as 20th Century Fox, will pay THB10 million for the rehabilitation of Maya Bay in Phi Phi Island. The Royal Forest Department will continue to oversee the restoration of the beach and submit a progress report every year for three years.

“The Beach” is a 2000 Hollywood movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio who plays the role of Richard, a young backpacker who visits Thailand in search of a “paradise” island.

Local environmentalists filed a lawsuit with the Civil Court in 1999 against then Agriculture Minister Pongpol Adireksarn, Forest Department Director-General Plodprasop Suraswadi, Thai film studio Santa International Film Productions, and 20th Century Fox for allegedly ruining the landscape of Maya Bay during the shooting of the Hollywood film. The film crew gave the beach a major makeover to make it “more tropical,” uprooting native plants and introducing alien species that’s said to have ruined the area’s ecosystem.

In 2012, the Civil Court accepted the case and it continued to drag on until the Supreme Court read the final verdict on Sept. 13.

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