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TV viewers need to see a doctor, stat

Sarawit "Kong" Subun, the actor who's also a captain and medic in the Army, says there is nothing to the rumour that he hasn't been seen on TV lately

Sarawit "Kong" Subun, the actor who's also a captain and medic in the Army, says there is nothing to the rumour that he hasn't been seen on TV lately because of his prior involvement in the anti-government protests.

Mor Kong (Dr Kong), as his fans call him, has indeed spoken out against the Shinawatra dynasty on the social media, but he says it's never cost him an acting job. "Actually I've finished three more TV series with Channel 3 - they just haven't been aired yet," he says. "And I'm starting another one soon."

Series are usually seven or eight months in production, Kong explains, and then they only air for a month or so, so there's bound to be periods when an actor seems to vanish. He says he's under contract with Channel 3 for at least three series a year. "I really can't remember when the contract expires, but I can say that none of the channel's stars has any less work these days."

Asked what he'll do if Channel 3 decides it's had enough of him and doesn't extend his contract, Kong says he'll simply carry on being a doctor. He's more than that, of course - he was voted the most handsome doctor in Thailand online. "I'm flattered, of course - if I said I wasn't happy it would be a lie! I thank all the fan."

Kong's other job - we're not sure which one should be considered moonlighting - is at the Office of the Permanent Secretary of Defence. "I normally take care of out-patients, so I can arrange my schedule to do other work. I do a lot of volunteer work as well and that sometimes affects my TV duties a bit, but I try to arrange it in a way that no one suffers."

The Cannes-Cannes girl

Araya "Chompoo" Hargate is back from Cannes, France, to face the music over her choice of gowns for appearances on the red carpet. She was there as brand ambassador for l'Oreal Thailand, whose parent firm co-sponsors the film festival. There was some hooting and hollering about her outfits, but her fans were sympathetic, noting that she would have got more publicity back home if it hadn't been for that coup thing.

As to the nastier remarks, Chompoo says she heard about it, but, "Personally, I was very happy with both of the looks that l'Oreal prepared for me." A lot of work went into the selection, she says. "It's normal to get criticism, but I think it's best just to do your job well. And no one else can know what I do better than I do. It depends on how you look at it. You have to adapt to being part of a team. But I consider it all valuable experience."

This was her second annual appearance on the red carpet at Cannes and she's glad to be accumulating that experience. "I think the photographers are starting to remember me. Now I'm more confident in front of the cameras. Last year I learned all the tricks to get their attention."

Chompoo is proud that fashion commentators at Cannes voted the first gown she wore - a black Kaufmanfranco strapless number - one the six best dresses of Day 8. Just as flattering, the South Korean media dubbed her "the Thai version" of their beloved actress-model Kim Tae-hee. "I'm really happy to get such a compliment from the foreign media!"


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