Thailand cave: Museum and film in the works for Tham Luang

Media caption,
Rescuers carry one of the boys on a stretcher

The cave complex in northern Thailand where 12 boys and their football coach were trapped for more than two weeks is set to be turned into a museum.

Rescue officials said the museum would showcase how the operation unfolded, predicting it would be a "major attraction" for Thailand.

At least two companies are also looking to make a film telling the story of the rescue.

The rescued group are all now recovering in hospital.

Video has been released showing them in good health and in good spirits, though they will stay in quarantine for a week.

The Thai Navy Seals have also published dramatic footage of the operation itself, showing how expert divers navigated the Wild Boar football team through the perilous journey to the surface.

Media caption,
The boys give peace signs as they recover in hospital

On Thursday, the Navy Seals were given flower garlands and an enthusiastic welcome as they arrived at a military airport south of the capital, Bangkok.

What will happen to the cave?

The Tham Luang cave is one of the largest cave systems in Thailand. It lies under the mountains around the small town of Mae Sai, in northern Chiang Rai province on the border with Myanmar.

The area is largely undeveloped with only limited tourism facilities.

"The area will become a living museum, to show how the operation unfolded," Narongsak Osottanakorn, the former governor and head of the rescue mission, told a news conference.

"An interactive data base will be set up. It will become another major attraction for Thailand."

However, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha has said precautions will have to be implemented both inside and outside the cave to safeguard tourists.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
The boys' story has gripped the world

It is not clear if the museum will be operational all year round, as Thailand is prone to heavy floods during the monsoon season, which lasts from June until October.

It was the sudden onset of that rainy season that trapped the boys deep underground while they were exploring.

Hollywood movie?

Two production companies are racing to turn the extraordinary story into a film.

Even before all 13 people had been brought out, US studio Pure Flix - which makes inspirational Christian films - had announced its producers were on the ground interviewing rescue workers,

Studio co-founder Michael Scott, who lives in Thailand, said his wife had grown up with Saman Gunan, the former Thai Navy Seal member who lost his life during the mission.

"To see all that heroic bravery in the cave, and to get all the divers out, it's just such a touching event and so personal to me," he said in a video on Twitter, filmed at the rescue site.

But according to Los Angeles-based Ivanhoe Pictures, they have been officially picked by the Thai government and navy to develop the film.

US media quoted the company as saying the film would be directed by Jon M Chu. He last partnered with Ivanhoe in directing the forthcoming romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians.

Concerns are already being raised on social media that any film would focus more on the international characters while downplaying the role of Thais.

Chu insisted on Twitter that his film would be fair.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

The 12 boys and their coach first made their way into the cave on 23 June but found themselves trapped after heavy rains caused it to flood.

They were found by British divers after nine days and eventually rescued in an operation that involved dozens of divers and hundreds of other rescue workers.