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Anna and the King (1999) Poster

Trivia

On the French audio track on the DVD, Jodie Foster dubs her own character's voice.
The real King Mongkut was paralyzed on one half of his face, a fact omitted from the film.
The film was banned in Thailand because of assumed historical inaccuracies about the King of Siam and the time period of the film.
Jodie Foster was paid $15 million for playing the lead role.
At first, it seemed that the film would be made on location in Thailand, but even after script revisions had been made, negotiations between the production company and the Thai government failed. They could not reach an agreement about the script's final content, and the production was subsequently denied permission to film in Thailand. The Thai authorities maintained that there were still too many historical inaccuracies for it to be acceptable, and it was filmed in neighboring Malaysia instead.
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The real King Rama IV, the King referred to in this movie by his given name of Mongkut, is the great-grandfather of the present King of Thailand, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, known formally as King Rama IX.
The King did not have a queen who would have been the mother of the Crown Prince. Rama IV's queen died young, and after her death, the King never raised another consort to replace her as queen.
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Bai Ling completely shaved her head bald for her role as Tuptim.
Three months into filming, an outbreak of Japanese encephalitis hampered production. Some sets had to be relocated, as they were too close to pig farms, which were the main source of the outbreak, transmitted by mosquitoes. The entire cast and crew were given a vaccine by the on-set doctor, and some sets were sprayed with insecticide before filming resumed.
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Kay Siu Lim (Prince Chowfa) is in real life married to Swee Lin Neo who plays Lady Jao Jom Manda Ung.
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Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson both reportedly turned down the role of Anna. Shannen Doherty was offered the role of Anna but turned it down due to her commitment in the TV series Charmed (1998).
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The set for the King's palace was one of the largest ever constructed, covering an area of over eight acres.
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Alyssa Milano was originally offered the leading role, but turned it down due to her commitment with the TV series Charmed (1998).
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During the conversation between Anna and Mongkut after she performed the egg trick, the contents of the glass jars in the classroom stank so much that Jodie Foster and Chow Yun Fat could hardly breathe.
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The name Tuptim - the consort who has an affair - means "ruby" in Thai.
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The Filming took place in Penang, Malaysia and the palace is a historical building which is also the office of the state municipal council.
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Syed Alwi was absolutely terrified about working with Jodie Foster. The first scene with him and Jodie took 45 takes to shoot.
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According to the audio commentary by director Andy Tennant on the DVD, Yun-Fat Chow was called "Fatty" on the set.
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The name given to the wealthy father of Tuptim is actually the name of a famous Thai political scientist. Thak Chaloemtiarana currently directs the Southeast Asia Studies Program at Cornell University.
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