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HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE ISSUE ONE


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ISSUE THREE 2011 HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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CONTENTS

H AWAII film & video M A G A Z I N E

www.hawaiifilmandvideo.com www.hawaiifilm.com PUBLISHER

James Baker EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Tim Ryan tryan@media-inc.com ASSOCIATE EDITOR

Katie Sauro ksauro@media-inc.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Tracy Bennett, Donne Dawson, T. Ilihia Gionson, Sue Kanoho, Art Umezu SALES MANAGER

Katie Higgins SALES EXECUTIVES

Eric Iles, Paul Yarnold PRODUCTION MANAGER

John Rusnak DESIGNER

Dawn Carlson, Christina Poisal, Beth Harrison WEBMASTER

Jon Hines

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Editor’s Letter

10 Production Update 12 Meet the Hawaii Film Office Crew

22 A Big Break for Maui Photographer 24 Maui Moves Forward 28 They’re Back! Hear Them Roar!

14 Marketing Efforts Generate Industry 34 UltraHawaii Campaign Entices Japan Awareness, Interest and Work Families to Visit the Islands 18 Surf’s Up! Point Break Remake Films 38 The Big Island: What’s Next for at Jaws, Maui Hawaii County? 20 Talking Story with Point Break 40 Inside Indie Doc I am Haloa Producer David Valdes On the Cover: A helicopter containing a Point Break camera crew films a scene at Maui's big wave surf spot, known as Jaws. Photo by Bryan Berkowitz

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HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE ISSUE ONE

OFFICE MANAGER/ACCOUNTING

Audra Higgins INFORMATION SERVICES MANAGER

Lois Sanborn

Media Index Publishing Group (800) 332-1736 media@media-inc.com Display Advertising: Call Media Index Publishing Group for a current rate card. Discounts for frequency advertising. All submitted materials become the property of Media Index Publishing Group and will not be returned. Subscriptions, call (800) 332-1736 for information and rates. Copyright © 2014 Media Index Publishing Group.All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be used for solicitation or copied by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or recording by any information storage or retrieval system, without the express written permission of the publisher. PRINTED IN THE USA.


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ISSUE THREE 2013 HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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Editor’s Letter I

’m excited to report that Hawaii’s 2013 film and television production spend was the third most in state history at $228 million, and generated about $400 million in overall economic activity for the state, the second highest in that category. The top spot was in 2010, when production expenditures were $407 million, a 77.7 percent increase from 2007’s $229 million, the previous record year. The 2010 flood of productions and spend also set a record for economic impact, creating some 3,300 jobs and generating $622.2 million in overall economic activity for the state. Economic impact in Hawaii in millions of dollars: 2001 $143.6 2002 $254.3 2003 $145.3 2004 $283.7 2005 $181.4 2006 $166.1 2007 $363.2 2008 $272.6 2009 $280.6

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2010 2011 2012 2013

$622.2 $298.6 $397.9 $400

Hawaii’s production industry on average brings in about $180 million and 2,500 jobs to the state annually. And you will discover in this issue that production in 2014 is moving along swimmingly with the likelihood that Hawaii Five-0 will be renewed for a fifth season, and that the franchise that keeps on giving—Jurassic Park—is returning to Hawaii in April to film the fourth installment in the series, Jurassic World. Originally scheduled to film in Hawaii for six weeks—four weeks on Oahu and two weeks on Kauai—production sources have told Hawaii Film & Video Magazine that a few more weeks may be added to the schedule. Since January, set construction has been going on at Oahu’s Kualoa Ranch and—I’m sure much to the production’s chagrin—can be seen from the Pali Lookout and near Chinaman’s Hat and the adjacent fishpond. Also set to film later this year—though no

HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE ISSUE ONE

shooting date has been announced yet—is the Fox Television drama pilot about Hawaii in the 1950s. The untitled project is set in 1957 in the Territory of Hawaii, which is on a path to become the 50th state in the Union two years later. Statehood and tourism are about to make a few men very rich, and when the brother of a small-time Hawaii hustler is murdered, he resolves to wage war on the most powerful man on the island. The script was co-written by Shawn Ryan and Davey Holmes (Shameless), with Fast & the Furious’ Justin Lin directing. Now on to a much less glamorous subject: the weathered, worn and tired Hawaii Film Studio at Diamond Head. The studio, which has been home to dozens of productions, including Baywatch Hawaii, North Shore, The River, LOST, Last Resort, and Hawaii Five-0, needs help. Many of the buildings on the 7.5-acre lot adjacent have major issues: electrical, insect and rat infestations, and faulty air conditioning are the most problematic. The aging air conditioning system in the 20-year-old, 16,500square-foot facility regularly breaks down, causing delays in filming. Hawaii’s production industry, while certainly not the cash cow that is the visitor industry, is at least a cash calf, consistently bringing in about $200 million a year to state coffers. And


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LOCATION MANAGEMENT • • • • • •

Scouting Budgets Permits Locations Crew Info Insert Car (4 Wheel Drive) • 4 Wheel Drive 12-15 Pass. Vans

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randyspangler.locationhi@gmail.com stephspang@mac.com • www.stephaniegspangler.com CAMERON CROWE’S "UNTITLED HAWAII PROJECT" GODZILLA DAVIDOFF - COOLWATER: NIGHTDIVE (PAUL WALKER) REVLON (Dir. Darius Khandji) BANK OF AMERICA "TRAVEL REWARDS" (Dir. Nick Lewin) HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE MAD MEN THE RIVER (ABC TV series) CHANEL: “Surf” (Kathryn Bigelow) OFF THE MAP (ABC) HAWAII FIVE-0 2010 (TV Pilot) PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN ON STRANGER TIDES (Oahu) Capitol One “Visigoths Beach” Lipitor “Heart to Heart Bob” Census 2010 - Pytka AT&T “Amelia” AT&T “Fountain of Youth” Sugarland “Keep You” Sugarland “All I want to do” Jenny Craig “Surfing” “Cycling” CDW- “Help,” “Getting Started,” “Expansion,” etc. CDW- “Growth,” “Gallery,” “Ransom,” etc. The Hartford- “Surfing” Pacific Life- “Cyclists,” “Surfer” You, Me and Dupree LOST (6 YRS.) Saturn-Sky North Shore (T.V. SERIES) LEXUS (COMMERCIAL) Coca Cola (THEATER ADVERTISEMENT) The Run Down (FEATURE/OAHU) Hanssen: MasterSpy (T.V MINI-SERIES)

E.R. (WARNER BROS. T.V./OAHU) Punch Drunk Knuckle Love (FEATURE/REVOLUTION STUDIOS)

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A MICHAEL BAY FILM/HAWAII)

KAUAI)

Baywatch Hawaii (T.V. SERIES/OAHU) Pacific Blue (T.V. SERIES PILOT/OAHU) Honda (COMMERCIAL/BIG ISLAND) Wind On Water (T.V. SERIES/BIG ISLAND) Honolulu Cru (T.V. PILOT/OAHU) What About Me (T.V. SERIES/OAHU) Beverly Hills 90210 (T.V. SERIES/OAHU) Meet the Deedles (FEATURE/OAHU) Mighty Joe Young

American Express (MAUI) And the Sea Will Tell (MINI-SERIES/OAHU) Thornbirds (PRE-SCOUT ALL-ISLANDS) Summer Girl (M.O.W./OAHU) Papillon (FEATURE/MAUI) Body Heat (FEATURE/KAUAI) Camel Cigarettes (BIG ISLAND) Rumblefish (FEATURE/MAUI) Jeep (KAUAI) (FEATURE/OAHU/KAUAI) Gaz de France (MAUI) Krippendorfs Tribe (FEATURE/OAHU/BIG Merit Cigarettes (MAUI) ISLAND) Honda (BIG ISLAND) George of the Jungle (FEATURE/PRE- Kenai Helicopters (MAUI) SCOUT/OAHU/KAUAI) Budweiser (OAHU) Byrds of Paradise (TV SERIES/ Throw Mama From the Train OAHU/BIG ISLAND)

In Gods Hands (FEATURE/OAHU, MAUI) Race the Sun (FEATURE/OAHU/BIG ISLE) Marker (T.V. SERIES/OAHU) 1 West Waikiki (T.V. SERIES/OAHU/BIG ISLAND)

Exit to Eden (FEATURE/LANAI) Don Juan de Marco and the Centerfold (FEATURE/OAHU) Nike (OAHU) Hawaii Five-O (10 YRS.) Magnum P.I. (5 YRS.) Jake and the Fatman (3 yrs.) Honeymoon in Vegas (FEATURE/KAUAI)

(FEATURE/KAUAI)

Pearl (MINI-SERIES/OAHU) From Here to Eternity (OAHU) Trenchcoat in Paradise (M.O.W./OAHU) Swimsuit (M.O.W./OAHU) Baywatch (OAHU) Point Break (FEATURE/OAHU) Island Son (T.V. SERIES/OAHU) Step by Step (MAUI) Blood & Orchids (MINI-SERIES/OAHU) McDonalds (KAUAI) Chef Boyardee (OAHU) Pepsi (OAHU) HBO “Chimps” (OAHU)

From stills to features, we do it all, large and small FAVAH/AICP/TEAMSTERS 8

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probably at least that much in “free” publicity for the state with all the productions highlighting Hawaii’s natural beauty. Yet year after year, as the studio falls further into disrepair, monies promised for studio maintenance are cut, eliminated or deferred. According to the state film office, the studio needs about $11 million worth of maintenance and basic repair; $1.73 million was set aside in 2013 in the capital improvement budget. In an interview with the Civil Beat online newspaper, a candid Donne Dawson, state film commissioner, conceded that it likely would be years before the studio is where it should be. Dawson hopes that eventually the state will fund a second soundstage at the Diamond Head site. Other problems at Hawaii Film Studio include an interior roadway that needs widening so it’s safer for large production trucks to turn. And the eight-year-old production building that houses executive offices doesn’t have air conditioning in the tropics. Dawson told Civil Beat that the studio’s shortcomings have caused production delays. “The industry’s fickle,” said Dawson. “They’ll go where they can get the film done, get it done quickly and under budget. If we can’t keep up with that pace, we’re screwed.” However, Hawaii aims to keep up with its competitors with recent enhancements to the Production Tax Credit, which include an increase in the per-production cap to $15 million and a 5-percent increase across the board. The sunset date has been extended to January 1, 2019. It remains to be seen how this increase in incentives will affect the Hawaii Film Studio. Tim Ryan Executive Editor


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Production Update

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Laura Dern (l) and Sam Neill (r) examine a “sick” Triceratops in the original 1993 Jurassic Park filmed on Kauai.

BY TIM RYAN Executive Editor Photos Courtesy of Kauai Film Office

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he dinosaurs are back! Hawaii’s most lucrative feature film franchise, Jurassic Park aka Jurassic World, will return here in April to shoot at least four weeks on Oahu, followed by two weeks on Kauai. Mainland locations include 11 weeks at Celtic Media Centre in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and then exterior locations in San Diego. Directed by Colin Trevorrow, Jurassic World stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jake Johnson, Nick Robinson, Irrfan Khan, and Ty Simpkins. Production companies are Amblin Entertainment, and Legendary Pictures in association with Universal Pictures. Steven Spielberg is executive producer. According to Trevorrow, Jurassic World is set 22 years after the original film. It has also been reported that the $200-million-plus film will feature underwater dinosaurs and a return to the Isla Nublar location that was seen in Spielberg’s 1993 original. Back in January, Jurassic World—code name Ebb Tide—set up shop on Oahu on the 18th floor of the Waikiki Trade Center. Set construction on Oahu also began then. Oahu locations will include Kualoa Ranch, doubling for Isla Nublar, and the Honolulu Zoo, where the first day of filming is scheduled. Universal has been tight-lipped about Jurassic World’s plot, but according to production sources, an early script set the story in present-day Isla Nublar, which is now an actual theme park as originally intended by the John Hammond character in the first film. According to the early script, the park attracts 10 million visitors a year and is “safe.” The park itself is described as very “Sea World-esque” and includes the Isla Nublar Lagoon. That means for the first time there will be underwater dinosaurs. The usually-menacing velociraptors now will be used to help fight the threat, which begins in the form of a new dinosaur—not seen in the previous films—that is much smarter than originally thought and is the main cause of havoc breaking out at the park.

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Jurassic World is slated for release in June 2015. As for Hawaii Island production, a low-budget docu-drama from the Canadian Cineflix Productions series Mystery in Paradise filmed throughout the island in February. The story is about the strangulation death on the island of 25-year-old Brittany-Jane Royal, murdered by her boyfriend, 22-year-old Boaz David Johnson. Johnson killed himself by hanging in Kalapana in January. The murder case received national attention. The Mystery in Paradise budget was $259,000, with the Hawaii spend just shy of $50,000. The production hired 10 local crew, including locations manager Nancy Erger, and shot on Hawaii Island for nine days. Film locations included Kekahakai State Park, Keauhou Small Boat Harbor, and Keauhou Bay. The production shot from the deck of Capt. Jack’s Fair Wind vessel. Meanwhile, Maui’s production outlook seems to get brighter and brighter. The Point Break feature film remake spent three days shooting massive 50-foot waves at the island’s North Shore Jaws break. (See accompanying stories on pages 18-22.) Ethyrea: Code of the Brethren, the first of five science fiction adventure movies written and produced by Danica Fontaine, is slated to shoot at Maui Film Studios in Kahului. The film also will be shot in Louisiana. The script has been finished and the film crew plans to open a production office this spring with principal photography this summer. Hawaii Five-0 continues its march to a fifth season pickup, thanks in part to the show moving from Monday to Friday nights this season, which decidedly improved its ratings. The show’s star, Alex O’Loughlin, said last

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A Jurassic Park truck enters the “park’s entrance” at Kauai’s Blue Hole.

year that he’s signed up for two more seasons of Hawaii Five-0—through season six—but is looking forward to a career beyond the hit TV series because the intense workload and shooting schedule has kept him out of other potential projects. Finally, two reality shows filmed on Oahu in February, including Television One’s R&B Divas for five days. The show, now in its third season, returns to the air this spring. Some of the cast members who were here filming include Monifah Carter, KeKe Wyatt, Angie Stone, Syleena Johnson, and newcomers Latvia Roberson and Meelah Williams. VH1 also filmed its reality series LeAnn and Eddie (LeAnn Rimes and Eddie Cibrian) on Oahu’s North Shore. Much of the shoot was done at the Turtle Bay Resort and featured the couple paddling, surfing, whale watching, and shopping. HFV


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ISSUE FOUR HAWAII FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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Meet the Hawaii Film Office Crew website and was instrumental in launching our 24/7 online permitting system for the state’s open and accessible sites. Like the diehard surfer that he is, no matter how gnarly things get, Alex handles it with finesse he Hawaii Film Office is back in and cool. action as the state’s top agency Our newest crewmember, Benita Bracharged with supporting Hawaii’s zier, Economic Development Specialist, growing film industry. After sustaining a comes to the Hawaii Film Office with more devastating blow in 2009, when the state’s experience in the film industry than most. reduction in force eliminated 75 percent of She has 35-plus years working in film as the film office core staff, we are slowly buildcontinuity supervisor, and also in the music ing our way back to our pre-RIF levels. We’re business as a production manager at Warnnot there yet, but we are hoping that by the er Records. Benita served as Maui end of this year we’ll be in a much County film commissioner for stronger position than we are now. eight years and then moved to As the first point of contact for Oahu to work for the Hawaii Film any film production throughout the Office in June 2012. On NovemHawaiian Islands, our job is to ber 1, 2013, she became permaensure a successful experience for nent with our office. Benita’s priall concerned: the production, govmary responsibilities are ernment agencies, our community. managing the tax credit program, It’s not easy by any measure. But supporting the rest of the staff given the strength, dedication and with film permitting, and the endcapability of the individuals who less handholding for any produccomprise the Hawaii Film Office, ers looking to film in Hawaii or we manage to get the job done, day who are on the ground shooting. after day, month after month, and She is an invaluable member of year after year. our team. We are a close-knit bunch and we And then there’s yours truly have to be. On any given day we are (Donne Dawson), leader of the processing last-minute permits and pack and state film commissioner. tax credit applications, dealing with I started with the Hawaii Film production disasters, and working Office in 2001, following in the on ways to improve our service to footsteps of my mentor Georgette the industry and community we Deemer. I have been with the love. Allow me to introduce our state for more than a decade. My staff: background is in journalism and Sandi Ichihara-Abe, Film (l to r) Alex Ho, Economic Development Specialist; Sand Ichihara-Abe, Film media relations, and documenIndustry Development Special- Industry Development Specialist; Donne Dawson, Hawaii Film Office comtary production, which all comes ist, aka our senior film permit guru, missioner; Tammy Hasegawa, Hawaii Film Studio Facilities Manager; and Brazier, Economic Development Specialist. Photo by PF Bentley in handy with this demanding and film studio coordinator, budget Benita (pfpix.com) fast-moving job. I also serve as wrangler, and overall human dataresident Hawaiian, working hard base. Sandi has an MBA and it to find balance between productions filmshows. She started with the state back in 1989 Alex Ho, Economic Development Speing in Hawaii, community, and protecting as a student hire in Ocean Resources. She cialist, aka our film permitting pro. Alex the natural and cultural resources we hold moved over to the Film Branch in 1992. It makes 10 years with the State of Hawaii this so dear. helps immensely that Sandi has been with year. He started working in the Investment Given the more-often-than-not crazy of the state as long as she has because her & Business Analysis Branch as a foreign this business, I couldn’t ask for a stronger strong relationships with all our state ageninvestment expert. When the film office was team than the one I have. We love what we cies are invaluable to the film program. In left with just one specialist, Alex came over do, stressful as it is. We look forward to 2009, Sandi was the lone person left to run to help out and has been doing a stellar job building an even stronger team that will the film program in our downtown Honoluever since. He is a quick study and soon greatly benefit Hawaii as a world-class filmlu office when the layoffs happened. She did became proficient at all things film and now ing destination and community of truly talan exemplary job keeping the industry going handles the majority of the film permits that ented media-makers. HFV during some very challenging times. flow through our office. He also handles our

BY DONNE DAWSON Hawaii State Film Commissioner

T

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Tammy Hasegawa, Hawaii Film Studio Facilities Manager, is our amazing film studio MacGyver. Tammy works ‘round the clock to ensure that our tenants have a functioning, safe, working facility to support our resident productions. Currently Tammy’s tireless efforts support the hit series Hawaii Five-0. Due to the aging film studio facility— the soundstage was built in the early ‘90s and the dilapidated bungalows date back to the early ‘70s—most of the work she does is in the area of repair and maintenance to keep things operating smoothly.

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Marketing Efforts Generate Industry Awareness, Interest and Work BY TIM RYAN Executive Editor

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ot on the heels of the passage of Hawaii’s enhanced Production Tax Credit, the Honolulu Film Office set in motion an aggressive marketing plan to build awareness of Oahu as a premier film location with an improved rebate program. Interest has been strong with some immediate results.

The enhancements to the Production Tax Credit included an extended sunset date to January 1, 2019, an increase in the per-pro-

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duction cap to $15 million, and a 5-percent increase across the board, making the rebate 20 percent on Oahu and 25 percent on the Neighbor Islands. Visit filmoffice.hawaii.gov/incentives-taxcredits/ for more information. The first marketing efforts were in October 2013 in Korea at the Busan International Film Festival and at the annual film commission symposium that had a twist, a Producers Market. “Film commissioners and investors heard pitches from Asian-based producers and had the opportunity to schedule one-onone meetings with the filmmakers whose projects were of the most interest,” said Honolulu film commissioner Walea Constantinau. “The Asian producers were of course aware of Honolulu and Hawaii as a visitor destination and were excited to hear that there were production incentives, as

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well. The combination is very powerful.” Those two events were followed up in November at the American Film Market (AFM) and a private Academy-focused confab called The Contenders. “AFM brings a global market to one place, Santa Monica,” said Constantinau, “so it was a great venue for a broad-based awareness campaign. It was also a great time to be in Los Angeles and gave me the opportunity to have specific meetings with filmmakers who have projects in development or pre-production.” One such project was Alcon Entertainment’s remake of Point Break. “Point Break was a project that was on my radar to seek out while in Los Angeles,” said Constantinau. “When they became


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the darling of AFM, I didn’t think I’d be able to get a meeting, but the head of production, Yolanda Cochran, was very interested in hearing about the rebate and production in Hawaii.” Constantinau learned that the remake would be an extreme adventure show, and that surfing was indeed of interest. “They were scouting around the world for the best places to do the film and when it came down to it, (Hawaii’s) great crews— we do have the best watermen in the world—combined with the rebate made us a very attractive destination.”

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The wheels started turning in December, with filming coming together with a big swell in February. Two other potential projects were identified at AFM, one that came to Oahu for a writers scout in December, and the other with a producer/director scout planned for late March or early April. The Contenders was a focused effort towards members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that brought studios and filmmakers together with Academy members for a day of highlevel discussions.

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“This was a unique mix of people from across the industry, craftspeople, studio executives and filmmakers,” said Constantinau. “It was another great opportunity to build awareness throughout all ranks of the industry.” The highlight of the marketing campaign to date occurred in January at two Producers Guild of America (PGA) events, one in New York and the other in Los Angeles. While in New York attending a board meeting for the Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI), Constantinau had the opportunity to meet with members of the PGA East at a roundtable discussion between film commissioners and about 50 producers based in the Big Apple. “The enhanced rebate was exciting for many of them to hear about… I get the definite sense that the mindset of Honolulu, Oahu, and Hawaii was shifting from unattainable to attainable,” said Constantinau. “That information, coupled with the new JFK direct flights on Hawaiian Airlines, was a very attractive package—especially since we were in the midst of the Polar Vortex.” The next day, Constantinau was on her way to Los Angeles, where the Honolulu Film Office was a key advertiser of the PGA Nominees Breakfast. The event brings together all 10 of the producers of the films nominated for Best Picture at the Producers Guild of America Awards. “Honolulu was front and center at that event,” said Constantinau. “The Nominees Breakfast brings together key decisionmakers who are in the business and who are being highlighted at the height of their careers. It was quite an honor to be recognized at the event and have the opportunity to talk about what Honolulu, Oahu, and Hawaii have to offer to the producers of American Hustle, Blue Jasmine, Captain Phillips, Dallas Buyers Club, Gravity, Saving Mr. Banks, Her, 12 Years a Slave, Wolf of Wall Street and Nebraska, as well as the 500 attendees to the event.” What’s next? Constantinau is looking forward to joint marketing efforts with the Film Offices of the Hawaiian Islands, the first of which is the Locations Trade Show in Los Angeles, held in late March. “There is one more joint event in New York we are working on that would focus on the spot commercial production industry,” said Constantinau. “The new route from Hawaiian Airlines that flies direct into JFK opens up that marketplace to us and we want to be aggressive about going after it.” HFV


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Surf’s Up!

POINT BREAK REMAKE FILMS AT JAWS, MAUI

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owabunga, dude! The legendary Maui big wave surf spot known as Jaws—‘Peahi’ in Hawaiian—was the star of a spectacular shoot in January for the remake of the feature film Point Break, where near-perfect 50to 60-foot waves broke consistently. The original Point Break, shot in 1991, starred Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze and used stock footage of large waves at Waimea Bay on Oahu. This time, though, the Point Break production had for months been tracking winter storms in Ireland, France, Portugal, Spain and Hawaii that could produce enormous waves needed for the footage. Producers wanted a location that could double for Cortes Bank, a sometimes-surfable seamount 100 miles west of San Diego, where waves close to 100 feet have been spotted. When it was determined that the waves would be breaking in Hawaii, a team of producers, including David Valdes, along with director Ericson Core and stunt surfers from California, hurried to Hawaii. Two helicopters were used to capture dramatic scenes. The remake will be pretty much like the original: A young undercover FBI agent infiltrates a gang of thieves who share a common interest in extreme sports. Gerard Butler, who starred in another surfing film, Chasing Mavericks, will star in Point Break. Butler will play ‘Bodhi’ (played by Swayze in the original movie), who’s described as “an extreme-sports athlete who seeks nirvana through the conquest of a series of athletic feats such as surfing 100-foot waves. He saves Johnny Utah, the undercover FBI agent, and brings him into the fold of international criminals.” The production companies are Alcon Entertainment, DMG Entertainment and Warner Bros. Maui County film commissioner Tracy Bennett called the Hawaii production “really amazing.” “I’ve spent 18 years in the movie industry and working on big movies and big stunts,” said Bennett. “But that was one of the most impressive things I’ve ever seen.” Film crews spent one day shooting the

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A Huey helicopter hovers six feet off the roiling sea to capture footage for Point Break. PHOTO BY BRYAN BERKOWITZ

giant surf from 7am to 5pm. Several cameras were stationed in the water, on nearby cliffs, and on two Windward Aviation helicopters. Eyewitnesses said the most memorable stunts had a helicopter hovering about 10 feet over the swirling surf, then suddenly climbing to pass over the swells. “When you hear (the film crew) explain how it’s going to be and then see it in person, it’s incredible,” said Bennett, who watched the stunts with director Core on the Peahi cliffs. “I’ve been on sets with explosions and car crashes and (they) are very controlled. This was a little different because the helicopter pilot had to rely on his ability to judge wave heights and speed, as well as swirling winds.” The Hawaii Film Office’s Donne Dawson said she got the call about the production’s imminent arrival on Maui “a couple days before Christmas, which is when they started to mobilize on the onset of these giant (surf) days.” “I got them registered for Hawaii’s tax credit and also started the process of getting

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them permitted to not only shoot at Jaws on Maui, but also Oahu’s North Shore,” she said. “We doubled down and cleared the way for them to shoot in both places so they could have maximum flexibility to where the conditions were the best.” The Hawaii Film Office needed to get permit approvals from the Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation. The film crew also had to have sufficient liability insurance, an “ironclad water safety plan” reviewed by the state, and qualified water safety personnel on scene for the entire shoot, and they could not interfere with nearby surfers, said Dawson. Hawaii was just the first of several filming locations for Point Break, which won’t begin filming with its cast until June in Europe. However, according to Maui sources, the film crew may return to the Valley Isle for additional shots, after visiting Maui Film Studios in Kahului. The 22,000square-foot warehouse in Maui Lani is the largest soundstage in the state. HFV


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Talking Story with Point Break Producer David Valdes

PHOTO BY BRYAN BERKOWITZ

BY TIM RYAN Executive Editor

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avid Valdes, a producer on the Point Break remake, calls it “the milliondollar call.” Last October, the production hired a storm tracker who provided them with daily surf reports from around the world about where giant waves might arrive. “We had three surf breaks we were considering filming for the opening and ending of Point Break,” said Valdes. Those spots were in Ireland, Portugal and Hawaii, which had three possibilities, including Outside Log Cabins on Oahu and Jaws on Maui. When Valdes, a former surfer, says they wanted “monster surf,” he’s not kidding. “This year Jaws broke well for the first time in five years, but it was just 20 feet, so we decided not to go after that,” he said. “We really were looking for waves in the 50-foot to 60-foot range. We decided against Ireland because it was just too stormy, ‘victory at sea,’ and gray. “We wanted blue skies and blue water. We got that in Hawaii.” Preparations began last fall, when the production notified the Hawaii Film Office and a Hawaii crew to be ready. The crew consisted of expert watermen, jet-ski operators (including Hawaii’s Brian Keaulana), “the best” safety crew, and two very experienced helicopter pilots, including Maui’s Don Scheer, and a Vietnam veteran who flew the

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Huey aircraft. Los Angeles crew numbered about 30, while the Hawaii contingent was 35, according to Valdes. The Hawaii swell was scheduled to hit on January 22, but the production didn’t think the forecast was reliable enough and “we almost canceled coming,” said Valdes. “What we didn’t want was a bunch of people basking in the sun waiting for the surf to arrive,” he said. “When you pull that trigger, we had to have all our ducks in a row.” On the preceding Monday, the forecast was far more solid, so “it was go time,” said Valdes. “Only then did we make the ‘million-dollar call.’” They had 48 hours to get to Hawaii and assemble the team. And there was no private jet for the L.A. crew. “Everyone flew coach,” said Valdes. “We grabbed whatever seat we could buy.” Hawaii—and specifically Jaws—was the number one spot in the Northern Hemisphere that the production wanted to shoot, but not only for its giant waves. “It’s an unusual surfing spot with huge waves, but has a (safe) deep water channel next to it where you can put boats and jet skis to film from,” said Valdes. The production had camera operators in the helicopters and on jet skis, including noted Hawaii cinematographer Don King. “From the Jaws cliff, I watched Don calmly shooting as skyscraper waves thundered toward him,” said Valdes. “You need a guy with big cojones to be able to work

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calmly in those conditions.” The producer described the filming experience as “a career highlight.” “To have all the pre-planning and strategy exceed our expectations and get 60- to 70-foot (waves) is still hard for me to comprehend,” said Valdes. “We got the real McCoy.” The helicopters contained visual effects photographers covering the area 360 degrees, and a surf photographer to shoot images for the production’s EPK. More than 35 hours of footage was shot that will be edited down to 3 minutes and used at the end of the film, said Valdes. But it wasn’t only the Jaws surf that attracted the production to Hawaii. “Hawaii really is a cheaper place to shoot because of the (tax) rebates and the really unbelievable water work crews you have,” said Valdes. “But then, Hawaii is the birthplace of surfing and tow-in surfing, so it makes sense. In Ireland we had a hard time identifying crew who could do what we wanted. The Hawaii crew was incredible.” Valdes credited the Hawaii State and Maui County film offices for their assistance. “They were very, very helpful,” he said. The Hawaii Film Office spoke with the head of production for Alcon Entertainment, as well as producers, stunt coordinators and location managers, well prior to the production’s arrival, as there was a massive amount of coordination necessary. HFV


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A Big Break for Maui Photographer

A Point Break production camera helicopter captures one of the 50-foot waves at Jaws on Maui’s North Shore.

Photos by Bryan Berkowitz

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even years ago, software architect and photographer Bryan Berkowitz gladly left the harsh winters of Syracuse, New York, for the tropical paradise that is Maui. “I was very lucky,” he said. “I got a job that brought me here.” While his expertise is as “a software guy,” Maui’s natural beauty convinced him to also try his talent with photography. “I love to hike and I’ve explored a lot of Maui that most people don’t get to,” he said. He graduated from point-and-shoot cameras to high-end DSLRs, and that led him to try his hand at the highly competitive surf photography field. And that’s one reason HF&VM is featuring him. The spectacular photographs of the giant waves at Maui’s most notorious surfing break, Jaws, are the ones he’s allowed the magazine to use. Berkowitz had heard, like all of Maui, about the huge winter waves set to slam Maui’s north shore in January. So he loaded up his gear and headed to Peahi, where Jaws is located. “The first shot I ever sold was of Chuck 22

Patterson being towed into huge Jaws surf on water skis,” he said. The images were sold to a magazine, and ad agencies began calling him for work. Berkowitz didn’t know that the Point Break production team had rushed to Hawaii in January to capture footage of what was predicted to be 60-foot waves at Jaws. “I had planned to go out there anyway because forecast was for huge surf,” he said. “I shot the surfers in the morning, then by the afternoon the weather conditions had cleaned up and the helicopters carrying production photographers arrived.” The Honolulu Star-Advertiser and The Maui News used his images of the production filming the surf, sometimes just a few feet above the giant swells. A Point Break crewmember, a man in Germany, and other companies are purchasing copies. “I realized that I could actually sell my photos, which is fantastic,” said Berkowitz. “But my trade is as a software engineer and I also do private consulting. “But I’m going to keep pushing the photo side and see just what happens.” HFV Berkowitz and his Maui-based company Berktech Solutions can be reached at 808-344-0035 or bryan@bryanberkowitz.com.

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The camera chopper getting into position.

A surfer exits a wave for the ending sequence in Point Break.


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Maui Moves Forward BY TRACY BENNETT Maui Film Commissioner

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s we call a ‘wrap’ to the end of the first quarter of 2014, I enter my fifth month as the Maui County film commissioner. After working 17 years on over 45 major movies, I look forward to the challenges that the future brings, and am enthusiastic about Maui County’s position as a sought-after film location. We look forward to the year ahead, as

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the big-budget Ethyrea: Code of the Brethren feature film arrives in May to start pre-production. Other upcoming projects include Sleigh Wrecked by local filmmakers Eric Gilliom and Jonathan Yudis, feature film Madam, the Grass is High, television pilot Infinity, and an untitled television pilot to be produced and directed by Carl Weathers. Marketing trips and meetings with the major studios, producers and decisionmakers are planned in the next several weeks, and as always, the fabulous Maui Film Festival is quickly approaching Being a Local 600 member, I know the workings of the IATSE unions, and am happy and proud to help educate and train our younger generation to work in this great business. Local 665 business rep Henry Fordham has helped Maui County take the steps toward growing our workforce by holding training and certification classes, and assisting those who are eager

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to learn and put in the requirements to join our unions. With the full support of Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa, his staff, and the county council, Maui County is striving to become competitive and move to the forefront of film and TV location destinations. The new Maui Film Studios is gearing up for Ethyrea, and will help provide Maui County with the soundstage and office space option that filmmakers will be looking for to take full advantage of the 25percent tax incentive. Also, I will be speaking and training at University of Hawaii Maui College and a few of the local high schools for students interested in entering the industry. We have held some events for our film community in Maui County, like Q&A periods with legendary actor Carl Weathers (see sidebar) and casting director Margaret Dovorsola, giving our local industry folks some insight into the careers of


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these renowned people, and hearing advice first-hand what it takes to succeed, giving some great motivation. I’ve recently returned from Seoul, South Korea, where I visited their leading film studio and post-production facilities, and was impressed by the technology the Koreans use. As part of my visit, I promoted Maui County as a future film destination to investors and various members in the Producers Guild of Korea and Korean Film Council. Maui’s sister city in Korea, Goyang City, is the country’s hub for postproduction and broadcast centers. Establishing and maintaining relationships is key when promoting the diverse and unique locations Maui County has to offer international productions. 2014 hopes to be a prosperous and busy year within the Maui County Film Office. I’m happy and honored to share Hawaii’s culture, beauty and talent. HFV

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MAUI HOLDS FILM INFO EVENT

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aui County held its first film and television informational event at the Maui Tropical Plantation in January featuring actor, director and writer Carl Weathers. The event benefited the Maui Salvation Army and Maui Food Bank. Admission was a can of food. Tracy Bennett, Maui film commissioner, and Weathers joined other industry members in discussing the state of the film industry and celebrating Weathers’ career. Weathers said Los Angeles productions are leaving California “in droves” because they can find so many other places to get

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help financially. “There are states with (production) tax rebates of 20, 25, and 30 percent and that’s substantial,” said Weathers. “And if you shoot in any of those places, you get your money back before you leave.” Weathers also contends that studios are mostly owned and run by large corporations now. “These corporations have a lot of businesses outside of making films, so maybe for them, they consider moviemaking as a loss leader,” he said. “And if you can come to a beautiful place like Maui where you can get a rebate of 25 percent, what’s there to think about?”


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They’re Back! Hear Them Roar! BY ART UMEZU Kauai Film Commissioner

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he big film buzz on the Garden Island in 2013 was the fourth installment of Jurassic Park, which had news media reporting that production would take place on Oahu and Kauai that year. By mid-April, the news was squashed because the production was delaying filming until the movie’s new director, Colin Trevorrow, re-worked the script, which he completed a few months later. Last September, Jurassic Park 4 finally got the green light, and it was announced that the retitled Jurassic World would film on Oahu, Kauai, and in Louisiana in 2014. So last year’s disappointment is 2014’s big news, especially for Kauai since the original Jurassic Park and the two sequels that followed were all filmed in part here. The first of the franchise filmed in the summer of 1992, when the last day of filming—September 11—was the day Hurri-

Art Umezu, Kauai County film commissioner.

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cane Iniki ravaged Kauai with 150-mph-plus winds and huge storm surges. Director Steven Spielberg, who stayed at the Westin Kauai Resort at Kalapaki Beach, actually used footage that his crew shot of the waves pounding adjacent Nawiliwili Harbor’s seawall for the film. The second film, The Lost World, was shot in 1997, and Jurassic Park 3 in 2001. It’s been 13 years since the third film was shot, and 22 years since the original. I recently unearthed in my files a Jurassic Park 3 press kit and was surprised to read that filmmaker Alexander Payne, who directed the Hawaii-shot film The Descendants, was one of the two screenwriters for the film! Payne, who was recently nominated for six Oscars for Nebraska, was probably already familiar with Kauai’s landscape and locations when he scouted for The Descendants in January 2010. In other news: • MTV’s new reality show, Are You the One?, shot 10 episodes on Kauai last year for six weeks and is airing now on MTV. Also currently airing is HGTV’s real estate show, Hawaii Life.

(l to r) Art Umezu (Kauai film commissioner), Walea Constantinau (Honolulu film commissioner), Harry Donenfeld (former Maui County film commissioner), and John Mason (former Hawaii Island film commissioner)

• Let’s congratulate nine-year-old Kauai girl, Siena Agudong, who has a recurring

role as Lulu Parker in the ABC TV series, Killer Women.

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Moreton Bay Figs (aka Jurassic Park Trees) in Allerton Garden at the National Tropical Botanical Garden on Kauai’s south shore.

A 1993 Jurassic Park production crew heads to • It’s been reported location on Kauai’s eastside. that actor/producer Jason K. Lau (The Tempest, Baywatch Hawaii) will write a script based on the Japanese short story Hanalei Bay by Haruki Murakami. A Japanese crew scouted Kauai for Hanalei Bay extensively last year. If the Hanalei Bay production films on Kauai, it’ll be the first Japanese movie to film here since Yoake No Futari (Rainbow Over the Pacific) in 1968. A made-for-TV movie, Executive Room at Midnight, produced by Kokusai Hoei of Tokyo, also filmed here in 1990. HFV

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UltraHawaii Campaign Entices Japan Families to Visit the Islands BY SUE KANOHO Executive Director, Kauai Visitors Bureau

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aby boomers in Hawaii will remember that there was a very popular character when they were growing up—Ultraman. The Japanese Tokusatsu television series Ultraman, which aired 39 episodes from 1966-1967, still has a strong following today. Well, earlier this year, Kauai had a shoot on island for the “UltraHawaii” campaign launching in March. When my husband saw the images of Ultraman here on Kauai, he couldn’t believe it and shared his memories of watching the series as a young boy here. I’ve heard many people mention how much they enjoyed watching the Ultraman series. Hawaii Tourism Japan is working with Tsuburaya Productions to promote family

Ultraman characters visit Kauai’s Koloa Rum Co. for a rum tasting, and later beautiful Waimea Canyon, known as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific (page 36). Photos courtesy of Hawaii Visitors Bureau

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travel to Hawaii through the exciting UltraHawaii campaign. This one-year campaign targeted at the Japanese domestic market will use the Ultraman Family, with its unparalleled name recognition within Japan, to widely promote travel to Hawaii with an emphasis on first-time families and people in other groups who have never visited. The emphasis is to follow the theme “To the Center of the Much-loved Blue Earth.” It’s Hawaii’s blue sky and ocean, abundance of lush greenery, crystal-clear waters and plentiful sunshine, together with the pleasant, all-cleaning wind that entices them to the “Blue Earth.” With each superhero comes something to conquer or overcome—right? This campaign will have two characters to deal with: Alien Baltan and Pigmon. We had a chance to see Alien Baltan being filmed at the Koloa Rum Tasting Room. Under the direction of Kan Eguchi—who has received national and international awards and who directed the opening video for the recent Tokyo Olympic Games bid presentation— the video images, along with still images, will give Japanese visitors a glimpse into the islands of Hawaii. Ultraman and ohana filmed at Waimea Canyon, Hanalei Bay and even took a moment to stop at the Hanalei Taro & Juice Co. food truck. The appearance of attention-grabbing eight-foot-tall Ultraman standing figures is sure to wow crowds in Waikiki and serve as a photo opportunity, as well. Kauai is excited about the UltraHawaii campaign and looks forward to welcoming our new friends from Japan. HFV

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The Big Island: What’s Next for Hawaii County? BY T. ILIHIA GIONSON Acting Big Island Film Commissioner

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rom daredevils kayaking down East Hawaii waterfalls in Brazil’s Planeta Extremo, to episodes of A&E’s Duck Dynasty and the History Channel’s American Jungle, over 60 projects filmed on Hawaii Island in 2013, bringing in $3 million. Hawaii Island is looking forward to growing our film industry even more.

I come to the Big Island Film Office from the office of Mayor Billy Kenoi, where I served as one of his executive assistants handling media and public relations. My work in this industry was at Paliku Documentary Films on Oahu, and with Walt Disney Imagineering at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina. The summation of my experience is that I am a storyteller, and I’m excited to support storytellers from around the world bringing their work to life on Hawaii Island.

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I thank our retired film commissioner, John Mason, for his seven years of dedication and commitment to growing Hawaii Island as a film destination. His shoes are big ones to fill, but I will do all that I can as an advocate and facilitator to support the growth of our industry. In the very near future, I look forward to meeting with the men and women of Hawaii Island’s film industry to identify the obstacles in getting more projects and address them together. We are also looking forward to the GVS

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Transmedia Accelerator, a unique project spearheaded by David Cunningham to bring media entrepreneurs together with the expertise and capital they need to build a thriving enterprise. The county of Hawaii is committed to the success of this project and we will be working with the Hawaii Strategic Development Corporation and the private investors that will bring this accelerator to Hawaii Island. It is an honor to join my colleagues Tracy Bennett on Maui, Walea Constantinau on Oahu, Art Umezu on Kauai, and Donne Dawson in the Hawaii Film Office. We will be working together with our respective counties, the state, and the production industry to keep Hawaii film on the move. If you have any thoughts that you would like to share with me, please feel free to call the Big Island Film Office at 808-961-8366 or email film@filmbigisland.com. It is an exciting time for film on Hawaii Island, and I am looking forward to keeping the momentum alive. Aloha! HFV


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Inside Indie Doc I am Haloa

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ome of Hawaii’s finest filmmakers have joined hands to create a documentary that focuses on rediscovering the Hawaiian culture’s sacred Haloa, which means long breath, eternal breath, and also is the poetic name for the lauloa taro. I am Haloa, a film about Hawaiian identity and culture, is a comingof-age journey to rediscover Haloa through life-giving poi. At the heart of the story is a plant known as kalo, or taro, which has nourished the Hawaiian people for hundreds of generations and is important to Hawaiian identity and culture. Leading the project are Vince Keala Lucero (producer/cinematographer) and Torry Viliami Tukuafu (producer/writer). The feature-length documentary is being produced by Laukapalili Films. The story follows three 17-year-old Kamehameha high school seniors— Lahela Paresa, La’ahiahoaalohaokekaimalie Kekahuna, and Taylor Anne Meali’i Fitzsimmons—who embark on a 90-day journey of self-discovery under the guidance of their kumu and kalo ku’i practitioner, Daniel Anthony. Together they will travel throughout the Hawaiian Islands to better understand their ancestry and to re-establish a lifestyle link to the first Hawaiian, Haloa.

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The trio will commit to cultivating, harvesting and eating kalo (taro/poi) for three meals a day. The women will travel from Oahu to Kauai, Maui, Molokai, Kahoolawe, and Lanai to learn from some of the most respected Hawaiian leaders about the future role that Haloa could play in guiding the people of Hawaii. I am Haloa explores the inherent values and conflicts that come with incorporating Haloa into modern lifestyles and the innovative, savory new ways this ancient, sacred food is revolutionizing global cuisine through a sustainable kalo culture. The women will work with several of Hawaii’s top slow-foodminded chefs, including Lee Anne Wong, Ed Kenney, Mark Noguchi and Andrew Le, who incorporate pa’i’ai in their menus. Producer/cinematographer Lucero has been a filmmaker since his high school days, producing his first documentary while at Kamehameha Schools. After receiving a degree in film from Loyola Marymount University, he returned to Hawaii where he produced Holomua and Wahine O Ke Kai through his production company, Aloha Friday Productions.

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In 2007, he formed Co Creative Studios that produces television, commercial and film projects, creating content for Kamehameha Schools, Showtime Networks, HDNet and Hawaii Pacific Health. Most recently the company’s involvement with The Haumana and The Dress helped both films win Audience Awards at the Hawaii International Film Festival. Tukuafu, the film’s producer and writer, has spent the last decade working on various big-budget Hollywood productions, including LOST, Hawaii Five-0, Tropic Thunder, The Run Down, and Friday Night Lights. His work in the independent film community has brought him great appreciation for the importance of having authentic Polynesian voices represented in media locally, nationally and worldwide. He produced the film One Kine Day in 2011 using industry best practices and cost-saving strategies to bring that project in well under budget. Also on the project is Anne Keala Kelly, director/writer. She is a Native Hawaiian independent filmmaker and journalist. Her documentary, Noho Hewa: The Wrongful Occupation of Hawaii (2009), won awards at

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international film festivals. I am Haloa recently completed a Kickstarter campaign, and surpassed its fundraising goal. The film is scheduled to begin shooting in March, with post-production scheduled for summer 2014. I am Haloa anticipates premieres in film festivals in winter 2014-15. HFV


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