This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Big Island Film Festival that was held on the Kona side of the island.
I arrived on Friday and was able to catch actor Tom Berenger talking about his experiences in the movie and film industry. Big Island Filmmaker and Festival director Leo Sears had to fill conducted the interview and then audience members later got to ask questions.
This was my first year attending this great festival and I got a chance to see some really great films and movies, but I also got to meet some of the folks that actually worked on the movies either as directors, producers or actors themselves.
Tom Berenger talking story with Hawaii’s own famous actor Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa
It was a great setting at The Shops at Mauna Lani for this group talk story session with Mr. Berenger.
On Saturday, I spent about 5 hours on and off during the day watching all sorts of short films in the Fairmont Orchids Auditorium. I must have watched over 20 movies throughout the three days that I was there.
Sunday was the awards luncheon and Mayor Kenoi was there to give out the first ever “Spirit of Hawaii” award.
Audience Choice Short:
“Deface” – Painting Pictures; Producer/Director/Writer John Arlotto
Audience Choice Feature:
“Aloha Daze” – Indie Kine Films, LLC; Producer Kim Spanoghe, Dante Parducci, Kimberly Binning; Director/Writer Dante Parducci
Best Animated Short:
“Summer” – Firewater films, Director/Writer, Marc Wiskermann
Best Student Short:
“Lucky Lotus” – American Film Institute, Producer Norie Ochiai, Norma Mallin, William Mallin, Jacqueline Tambunting; Director Ken Ochiai; Writer Cara Fason
Best Foreign Short:
“An Affair with Dolls” – Cinemantrix, Director/Writer Hans Montelius
Best Family Short:
“Official Selection” – Reel Vision Films, Producer Vince Masciale, David Sinatra, Keith Cox, Natalie Masciale; Director Vince Masciale; Writer Ryan Self
Best Hawaii Short:
“Ajumma! Are You Krazy?” – Brent Anbe Productions, LLC; Producer Brent Anbe, Ashley Smith, Laurie Foi; Director/Writer Brent Anbe
“Your Lucky Day” – Poducer Nathan F. Barr, Thai Tran, Lacey Leavitt; Director Dan Brown,Writer Dan Brown
Best Foreign Feature:
“Broken Hill” – Audience Alliance Motion Picture Studio; Producer Chris Wyatt and Julie Ryan; Director/Writer Dagen Merrill
Best Family Feature:
“Finn on the Fly” – Amaze Film & Television; Producer Michael Souther, Teza Lawrence, Stephen Onda; Director Mark Jean; Writer Mark Jean, Michael Souther, Teza Lawrence, Kellie Ann Benz
The Barbara Award for films celebrating children:
“About the Keiki” – ACM-University of Hawaii at Manoa; Producer Paulo Kobayashi, Felicita Garrido, Prof. George Wang; Director/Writer Felicita Garrido
“Charlie Valentine” – American Media Group; Producer Bill J. Gottlieb, Ed Robin, Ted Warren, and Ray Cavaleri. Written and Directed by Jesse Johnson.
Mayor’s “Spirit of Hawai’i” Award, presented by Mayor Billy Kenoi
Pomaika’i Brown – “Aloha Daze”
BIFF Hookana Award:
Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa
Golden Honu Award for Filmmaking, sponsored by Hawaii Island Film Office:
Golden Honu Award for Acting, sponsored by Hawaii Island Film Office:
(I didn’t realize how tall he was until I stood next to him!)
Here is Big Island Film Festival Director Leo Sears with some of the winners that were present.
I had a great time at this festival and I’m already looking forward to next years one.
They did emphasize that they are looking for more “Family Friendly” films so for you filmmakers out there… think about that as you are thinking about films that you may want to submit to the festival.
Feel free to click on any of the pictures above or below for a better view of the pictures.
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