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Ron Howard Based THIRTEEN LIVES Script Around the ‘Anatomy of a Miracle’

© 2022 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Ron Howard Based THIRTEEN LIVES Script Around the ‘Anatomy of a Miracle’

By Movieguide® Staff

Director Ron Howard says his new movie, THIRTEEN LIVES, is built around “the anatomy of a miracle.”

“People think they know the story, but there’s so much more to learn, and what there is to learn is suspenseful and emotional,” Howard said during a press conference on June 27.

THIRTEEN LIVES tells the remarkable true story of the global effort to rescue a Thai soccer team that got stuck in a cave after in flooded in 2018. Faced with insurmountable odds, a team of the world’s most skilled and experienced divers – uniquely able to navigate the maze of flooded, narrow cave tunnels – join with Thai forces and more than 10,000 volunteers to attempt a harrowing rescue of the twelve boys and their coach. With impossibly high stakes and the entire world watching, the group embarks on their most challenging dive yet, showcasing the limitlessness of the human spirit in the process, according to the movie’s press release.

“Hopefully [the movie] does remind us of what is possible when we come together, unify and work together,” Howard said. “I always did sort of put on my script, ‘The anatomy of a miracle.’ And as simple and kind of corny as that sounds, that’s what I was always trying to build in the most granular, detailed way, but also to understand in a very clear-eyed way, the price of that the sort of emotional risks, the career risks, the physical risks involved in doing the right thing.”

Producer Raymond Phathanavirangoon also found inspiration in the miraculous story.

“There’s a lot of darkness around the world, and if I can make a film that actually can show the world that everybody can come together, despite all the differences, and create a miracle, and to basically give some positivity back, that would be something that is truly amazing,” Phathanavirangoon said. “I was very moved when [Howard] said that, because that was really the vision that I felt that I was really responding to.”

Other cast and crew praised the strong moral values in the story, including selflessness and teamwork that contributed to the rescue.

“Everybody worked hard, everybody pulled together,” actor Vigo Mortensen said. “It was reflected the real rescue in that it was a very selfless, team-oriented effort, shooting the movie as well.”

THIRTEEN LIVES will hit select theaters on July 29, and be available on Prime Video on August 5. Movieguide® has yet to review THIRTEEN LIVES and cannot advise on its content.