Brother Of The Year’s stars Sunny, Yaya and Nichkhun claim to be ‘siblings of the year’

(From left) Thai actors Sunny Suwanmethanon and Urassaya “Yaya” Sperbund and Thai-American actor-singer Nichkhun in Singapore to promote their film, Brother Of The Year.
(From left) Thai actors Sunny Suwanmethanon and Urassaya “Yaya” Sperbund and Thai-American actor-singer Nichkhun in Singapore to promote their film, Brother Of The Year. PHOTOS: GOLDEN VILLAGE PICTURES

Brother Of The Year stars Sunny Suwanmethanon, Urassaya "Yaya" Sperbund and Nichkhun say they are great siblings in real life, unlike the meddlesome brother in their movie

Thai heart-throb Sunny Suwanmethanon plays a meddlesome sibling in the new movie Brother Of The Year, but the 37-year-old actor says he is a great brother in real life.

Or, at least, he is by default.

"My brother is seven years older than me, so there's nothing much I can say or do that he will listen to anyway," he tells The Straits Times in a mix of Thai and English at a recent interview.

"And he doesn't bother with my life either, so it's good. We respect each other."

That sounds like a far cry from the siblings at the centre of his new film. His character Chut enjoys making his younger sister Jane's (played by Urassaya "Yaya" Sperbund) life hell.

The pair's relationship goes from bad to worse when he attempts to sabotage her blossoming romance with her Japanese-Thai colleague Moji (played by Nichkhun).

Nichkhun, 30, a Thai-American actor who is also a member of K-pop boyband 2PM, says in the same interview that he would never torment any of his three siblings this way.

The bachelor, who has an older brother and two younger sisters, says in English: "I travel a lot and I'm overseas all the time, but I try to be supportive and protective whenever I can.

"If they have something they want to talk about, or if they want some advice, they can always come to me. I try to be that brother. I think I'm 'brother of the year' all the time."

The same goes for Yaya, who says she considers her elder sister not just her sibling, but also her "best friend".

The cast were flown into town to promote the film, which was a huge hit at the Thai box office when it opened there in May.

 

In only the first four days of its release, it made more than US$2 million (S$2.7 million), making it the No. 1 domestic film of the year in Thailand so far. It is also the third highest-grossing film overall in Thailand this year, after Hollywood superhero blockbusters Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther.

The producers of the film certainly hope that the movie will also find success overseas, the same way a number of Thai films have done in recent years.

Last year's school drama Bad Genius, for example, about a group of students who cheat in exams, earned a historic US$41 million in the huge film market that is China, sparking a new wave of interest in Thai cinema there.

Other Thai films, such as the romcom I Fine... Thank You... Love You... (2014) and May Who? (2015), have gained a strong fan following throughout South-east Asia and made stars of their good-looking young cast.

Sunny, who was also the lead in I Fine..., says: "I think audiences enjoy Thai films, especially our comedies, because we have a sense of humour. Thai people are very funny people. We don't take things seriously."

• Brother Of The Year opens in cinemas today.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 12, 2018, with the headline 'We are all 'siblings of the year''. Print Edition | Subscribe