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Selection of Panels at Hawai festival

The 27th Annual Louis Vuitton Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF), on Oahu from October 18 – 28, does more than just showcase premiere and award-winning films from around the world.

Through seminars, it presents a variety of professionals that open the forum of arts, philosophy, and culture to take festival goers around the world and back. Through its youth education programs, it also inspires the next generation to pursue opportunities in digital creative media and to broaden their horizons through global cinema.

“HIFF has always prided itself on delivering educational outreach to the community and schools through our public seminars and youth education programs,” said Chuck Boller, HIFF executive director.

The different seminars and programs offered this year are as follows:

Wednesday, October 24 – 6 PM – Dole Cannery 18

Inspired by The Vilcek Foundation, HIFF is profiling six talented, foreign born filmmakers. Charlie Nguyen, Reiko Tahara, Max Uesugi, Stephane Gauger, Dustin Nguyen and Justin Lin have each made their mark on American cinema. They will present their latest films, participate in youth education programs and offer a free public seminar during the festival. The seminar will give these filmmakers an opportunity to share stories of their journeys from their distant homelands to the forefront of American independent cinema. The seminar will be moderated by Paul Rausch, associate director and outreach coordinator at the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the Univerity of Hawaii at Manoa.

Friday, October 19:

At the center of the Vietnamese Cinema Symposium is the launching of the English translation of MODERNINITY AND NATIONALITY IN VIETNAMESE CINEMA, a groundbreaking book about the history of Vietanm cinema wrtitten by Ngo Phuong Lan; co-edited by Philip Cheah.

Vietnam Film Symposium at UH Manoa - 12 PM – Korean Center on East-West Road
With leading scholar/author from Hanoi, Ngo Phuong Lan; Singapore Film Fest direcotr, Philip Cheah and Hanoi filmmaker Pham Nhue Giang. Moderated by UH Professor Steven o’Harrow, Vietnam language and film scholar.

Screening of “The Deserted Valley” – 4:15 PM – Dole Cannery 18
Introduced by Director/Writer Pham Nhue Giang – FIPRESCI award during the 2002 Melbourne Film Festival for “its compassionate, poetic and evocative portrayal of an issolated community coming to terms with modern society”.

HIFF Café Chat with Vietanm Experts – 6 PM – HIFF Café at Dole Cannery 18

Saturday, October 27 – 2:30 PM – Dole Cannery 18

Like a virtual lecture held in major destinations of China, this enlightening film strecthes the revlevance of an understanding of indigenous cultural traditions – namely Confucianism and Daoism – in assaying China’s responses to the pressing issues of modernization in the contemporary world. The guiding premice of this documentary is that these ancient philosophies are very much alive and well in the ways of thinking and living of the Chinese people.
UH Manoa Professor Roger Ames takes us into these traditions, providing a vocabulary for understanding Confucianism and Daoism and suggesting how this vocabulary can be related to contemporary social practices; peers through culture to interpret several of China’s responses to the most pressing problems of the day; the impact of economic development, the degredation of the enviroment, the ongoing process of democratization and human rights issues.

Sunday, October 21
Screening of THE JOY LUCK CLUB – 2:30 PM – Dole Cannery 18
Seminar – 5 PM – Dole Cannery 18

Panelists will look at balancing literary inspiration with the creative process, the pros and cons of collaborating with the literary writer, the essentials of good storytelling, and cross-cultural representations. They will also interpret a variety of books that became films, among them: THE JOY LUCK CLUB (1993). UH Manao Professors Vilsoni Hereniko, who teaches Pacific literature, film, and theater; Ruth Hsu, who specializes in Asian American and contemporary American ethnic literary and cultural studies; Konrad Ng, of the Academy for Creative Media, who will also be moderating the panel.

Saturday, October 20 – 12 PM – Dole Cannery 18 (Malay/English subtitles)

This recently discovered classic from 1950 showcases the early artistic talents of a 21-year-old P. Ramlee, who would later go on to become the biggest film and music star in Malaysia’s hsitory. Shot in Singapore, this film uses a Hawaii theme to tell the story of a young woman named Aloha who falls into the clutches of a local gangster. The screening, the first outside Malaysia/Singapore, is made possible by the film subtitling program at the Center for Southeast Asian Studies, University of Hawaii. A discussion on the artisitc relationship between Hawaii and Malaysia, and issues involved in translating historic film will follow the screening. Presented by the Center for Southeast Asian Studies, UH Manoa

Saturday, October 20 – 4:30 PM – Dole Cannery 18

With the inception of Act 88 on July 1, 2006, Hawaii became a major player in the highly competitive world of production-related tax incentives. In the 15 months since, this new refundable credit, which offers 15% back on qualified production costs incurred on Oahu and 20% back on those incurred on the neighbor islands, has attracted a multitude of productions to the islands. Panel experts will discuss both the basic and advanced aspects of this important incentive, its impact on hawaii’s film production landscape, and the critical role it will play in taking our film industry to the next level.


Student Seminar – Four dynamic filmmakers – Daming Chen, Michael Kang, Garard Elmore and Helen Hood Scheer – with releases premiering at HIFF will share their expertise at a free seminar for students in grades 5 – 12. Moderator Konrad Ng, assistant professor at the University of Hawaii’s Academy for Creative Media, will invite students to engage the filmmakers in discussion around this year’s theme, “Careers in the Film Industry.” The seminar also will serve as a class project for high school students. The class will videotape the seminar so that it can be viewed by students statewide during later telecasts by the Hawaii Department of Education Teleschool.

Video Conferencing – With help from the Hawaii Department of Education Teleschool, HIFF will offer two video conferences this fall. The conferences will enable students throughout the state to interact “face-to-face” with filmmakers Shawn Hiatt and Michael Wurth. One conference will focus on students in grades 1 – 6 while the other will focus on grades 7 – 12. Both public and private schools with video conferencing capabilities will be welcome.

Classroom Visits – Students on Oahu will enjoy opportunities to meet seven successful professionals with films in this year’s festival. The filmmakers will visit students in classrooms and school auditoriums to share their knowledge and passion for cinema. Many of their visits will involve interactive activities such as particpating in a news program produced by students or critiquing students’ video projects. Filmmakers are: Stephane Gauger; Justin Lin; Anne Misawa; Charlie Nguyen; Reiko Tahara; Katsuhito Ishii and Gerard Elmore.


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