Aside from the Great Raid on Cabanatuan, WW2 Philippines was also the site of another significant and successful prisoner-of-war rescue, and by a combined operation of Filipino Guerrillas and the US Army's 11th Airborne Division: The Los Baños Raid on 23 February 1945. Look it up in Wikipedia under "Raid at Los Baños" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raid_at_Los_Baños) and you'll see why.
I hope they also make a movie of it because it combines more cinematic and exciting activities, including an impromptu, bicultural, triphibious combat assault. It included a prison camp spy recon, cross-country ranger infiltration, an airborne company parachute assault, an armored vehicle and artillery diversionary penetration assault of the Japanese lines, and an amphibious tractor (Amtrac) evacuation of the 2,147 rescued prisoners and the assaulting infantry units.
It's another rahrah "made-for-Hollywood" patriotic movie that we should all try our best to get off the ground by asking the public and the government to support. Having just finished filming and production of "The Pacific" mini-series, perhaps HBO might want to make this movie.
Post by insurrectomad on Nov 25, 2009 9:10:14 GMT -5
Are their any important and powerful living relatives of US officers who were POW'S? That might be a good place to start perhaps? Alas only when their is high profile American figure in the story will Hollywood show much interest, And as we all know the Phil. Film Industry prefers Sci-Fi/ Horror features for home consumption, both as films or TV productions. (well tested bread & butter earners). Cross team production must be led by the Americans I believe before any project could get off the ground. Still 'The Great Raid' didn't do too badly and made not so long ago. 3 versions of Robin Hood were made in the same year! Timing is the problem as the war in Afghanistan grinds on, the American public my welcome a military success story or wish to be distracted by comedy/love stories instead.
The Los Baños prison camp held 2,147 civilian expatriates (not military prisoners) who had exceeded the holding capacity of the civilian prison camp at the University of Santo Tomas. The Wikipedia article details their nationalities.
There were women and children among the prisoners and they were all rescued without a single casualty. This count exceeds the 512 American and Filipino prisoners of war rescued from the Japanese prison camp near Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija.
Unfortunately, the film "The Great Raid" was a loss at the box office, earning only 12% of its $80 million budget (according to Wikipedia). This may preclude any other producer from making a similar film. That would be too bad, but I hope that HBO's "The Pacific" might rekindle interest.
Post by insurrectomad on Apr 7, 2010 0:55:52 GMT -5
If the POWs of Los Banos were civilians from Europe then you would be best to seek interest from the British, Australian or Dutch? Film-makers TV producers, surely. The Great Raid film was never properly promoted from the start. I don't know how much promotion it got in USA but I only learnt of the film as it came with a batch of free DVDs in magazines distribute in England. I don't believe it was ever shown on at the national film cinemas in the UK. None of the American stars were household names and all of the filipino ones would be off the radar to American viewers! The PACIFIC series; if the promo clips shown on the TV are any indication, it will begin post Bataan and other American defeats. All the soldiers seen war the American 1943 olivegreen uniform & steel helmet. You can be sure that events in Burma, Malaya, Indo-china, China, Korea, and even Indonesia will be ignored. I sure this will be an other All American Gung-Ho event. I hope I'm wrong. I must return to London on 1st May, so will only get to see 2 episodes, so I will have to buy the DVDs if it's any good. A more realistic target is to get some Phil. Film producer to make a drama-documentary with a big American TV Star, with 'American"-English dialogue, (Tagalog being sub-titled). so it can be sold easier on the World Tv networks & DVD market. If it does well on TV, then Hollywood will fall over themselves to make a film! David
Post by rickthelibrarian on Apr 8, 2010 12:31:09 GMT -5
While we're on it (and not trying to hijack the thread), another good subject for a movie was the escape of the 10 prisoners of war (Ed Dyess, Sam Grashio and others) from the Davao Penal Colony in April, 1943. It was the only (relatively speaking) "large scale" prison escape of US prisoners of Japan in WWII. Fascinating!
There is a 2-hour long History Channel documentary on this at the very least.
I saw this one too. It was great (loved seeing the scenes where the "amphibious tanks" rose from the shore of what was supposed to be Laguna Lake) but some Hunters ROTC vets claim it's too one-sided, that their participation in the raid was downplayed too much. One reason of course is the Filipinos don't write much about their experiences in the war. I will try to research and hopefully post one vets' recollection of this raid. His name is Col. Gustavo "Tabo" Ingles - an Intelligence officer of the Hunters-ROTC Guerillas.
Post by legionnaire on Aug 14, 2011 18:19:03 GMT -5
2007 Fort MacArthur Day's -
On the right is a 11th Airborne Veteran (sorry forgot his name) who jumped in Tagaytay to liberate the Civilian prisoners who were going to be massacre by the Japs. He has jumped with a Thompson and also with a Garand.
Got first hand word from Colonel Ysmael Rodrigo of hunters ROTC, who was with us at this years bataan commemoration that the guerillas had already broken into the camp and were securing it when the airborne soldiers arrived. I believe the crucial american contribution were the amtraks that helped speed the escape.