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Month: July 2009

TURTLE BAY RESORT STARS IN A&E’S HAMMERTIME

TURTLE BAY RESORT STARS IN A&E’S HAMMERTIME

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Hammer & Stephanie

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The Turtle Bay Resort was prominently featured in last Sunday’s, July 26 episode of A&E’s reality show Hammertime making for a perfect backdrop for a surprise for Hammer’s wife, Stephanie.

In the prior episode, Hammer announced that the family will spend their vacation in Hawaii at the Turtle Bay Resort. What Stephanie didn’t realize was that her husband of 23 years was planning to ask her to marry her again and renew their wedding vows. While having a romantic dinner at the resort’s Ola Restaurant, Hammer drops down on one knee and asks his wife if she would “marry the same man” she married 23 years ago. She agreed.

The episode concludes with a horse-drawn carriage carrying the couple to the beach at sunset where family and friends gather for the evening vow renewal ceremony. (See above photo).

Pura Stephens, Turtle Bay Resort’s catering manager, received the last-minute call for the episode.

“We didn’t have much time to prepare but we knew this would be on the national stage and had to be extra special, showcasing the resort along with our very special vendors that work with us,” Stephens said. “Our calls went out to the top, crème-de-la-crème vendors associated with weddings. My hopes were that they would want to join us on this project because…we were asking them to donate their services.”

To view the episode please visit:

http://www.aetv.com/hammertime/video/index.jsp?bcpid=21711660001&bclid=30397649001&bctid=30452931001

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HI FILM OFFICE LAYOFF UPDATE

HI FILM OFFICE LAYOFF UPDATE

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HAWAII FILM OFFICE LAYOFF UPDATE

FAVAH today sent the following Email to members apprising them of the ” current status” of the Hawaii Film Office following a conversation between commissioner Donne Dawson and Jason Suapaia of Pacific Focus Inc. and Lewis & Montgomery.

— “The Hawaii Film Office is, and will continue to be, open for business.
 No one associated with the film office has been laid off yet.

— State Film Commissioner Donne Dawson and three of the film office staff
 (Brent Anbe, Kevin Inouye, and Sandi Ichihara) have been notified that
 their names are included on the state’s potential layoff list of 1,100 
state workers. Chuckie Kwak, longtime secretary for the Film Office will 
be retiring this Friday (7/31/09) so she was not notified of a potential 
layoff.

— The Governor has stated numerous times that she does not want the
 layoffs and would have to resort to those layoffs only if a 
furlough/paycut settlement with the unions CANNOT be reached. Everyone
 continues to be hopeful that a settlement will be reached.

Tammy Hasegawa, facilities manager for the Hawaii Film Studio is the 
only Film Office staff who’s name is not on the potential layoff list. She 
continues to operate the studio facility where LOST is prepping for its 
sixth and final season.
– Sandi Ichihara continues to be on maternity leave until at least August
 31 so the film office is currently more short staffed than usual.

We
 encourage all productions to submit film permits as early as possible
 allowing at least five business days for processing”…

The FAVAH board apparently is working with Dawson on “an appropriate plan of action” with other industry related organizations to respond to possible layoffs in “one strong, unified voice”…

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Soul Surfer update #323: The “official” prep start date is Aug. 10 for six weeks with principal photography set to begin on Oahu Sept. 22 through Oct. 30. The production then moves to Kauai for two weeks filming Nov. 6-20…Producers are Sean McNamara, David Brookwell, Dough Schwartz and Dutch Hofstetter

Congrats to producer McNamara and his wife Ellen who just had a baby…

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University of Hawaii is offering a Motion Graphics and Effects course in Final Cut for designers and editors

on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, July 31-August 2, 9 a.m.–5 p.m….Instructor is Steve Szabo…The fee is $595 and includes textbook; $555, without textbook. Register for: L102074…

This three-day hands-on course familiarizes students with real-world effects techniques, including filters, layering, composite modes, and animating video, graphics, and titles. The practical approach to motion graphics focuses on the features of Final Cut Studio that editors and designers need to create motion graphics in their daily work. Using Motion, Final Cut Pro and LiveType, build creative titles, motion menus, show bumpers, and news opens as you learn everything from text animation, compositing, and keyframing to 3D set creation and camera animation…

To register call 956-8400 or go to www.outreach.hawaii.edu/pnm

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HAWAII SHARK ENCOUNTERS IN DEVELOPMENT AS REALITY SERIES

HAWAII SHARK ENCOUNTERS IN DEVELOPMENT AS REALITY SERIES

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Photo courtesy Hawaii Shark Encounters

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Oahu-based Hawaii Shark Encounters of Haleiwa is on track to be part of the new reality series Shark Boat in development by Hell’s Kitchen producer A. Smith. The project is about the only company in the United States permitting people to swim with sharks outside protective cages… Hawaii Shark Encounters is run by free diver Stefanie Brendl

The show will focus on the struggles that Brendl and her staff face as they attempt to stay in business following the death of her boyfriend and business partner…Brendl and Jimmy Hall launched Hawaii Shark Encounters in 2002. Hall died in May 2007 after a base jumping accident…

Shark Boat features Brendl taking divers outside of the cage to swim with sharks, as well as the interaction among her staff…

Hawaii Shark Encounters and another similar excursion company have received scrutiny from some Hawaii lawmakers worried that the companies feed the sharks in order to attract them. The companies deny feeding the sharks…A. Smith founder Arthur Smith will exec produce with Kent Weed; Frank Stinton is also an EP. A. Smith’s other credits include Kitchen Nightmares and I Survived a Japanese Game Show…

PRODUCER CHRIS LEE TO SPEAK ON WEST OAHU PRODUCTION FUTURE

PRODUCER CHRIS LEE TO SPEAK ON WEST OAHU PRODUCTION FUTURE

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EVENT ANNOUNCEMENT: Imagine the West Oahu plain transformed into a film production and creative media center with businesses that produce high tech computer generated special effects for movies that are being made around the world.  Then imagine a new film production studio and a thriving hotel and restaurant industry to support that trade…Producer Chris Lee sees the future there as a place where film students can pursue their passions for the visual arts at the UH West Oahu campus…He believes that a development could bring hundreds of high paying, high quality jobs to West Oahu for those  born and bred in Hawaii, including for video game production, computer animation and digital media….This is just part of Lee’s vision to transform West Oahu into the creative media hub of the Pacific Rim…

Lee has served in various capacities in the motion picture, television and video industries, including president of production at TriStar Pictures and Columbia Pictures, where he oversaw Academy Award-winning films as Jerry Maguire, Philadelphia, and As Good As It Gets.  He executive produced Superman Returns for Warner Brothers and Valkyrie for United Artists, and raised production funding for Batman Begins, Superman Returns, 300, and The Dark Knight. He also worked on numerous other hits such as My Best Friend’s Wedding, Legends of the Fall, The Fisher King, The Mask of Zorro, Godzilla, and The Patriot…Lee grew up on Oahu and recently founded the University of Hawaii’s Academy for Creative Media…

The West Oahu Economic Development Association is presenting Lee in a discussion and luncheon on Wednesday, July 29 at the J.W. Marriott Ihilani Resort & Spa at Ko Olina, Ocean Ballroom from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. to discuss his vision…

For further information or to place a reservation, contact Barbie Rosario at 842-1600 * Fax:  847-6575 or via Email at bkcorp2@hawaiiantel.net…WOEDA Members are  $40; non members/Guests, $50; at the door $60; special student rate with ID  is $15…

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VALLEY ISLAND PRODUCTION NEWS:

Finding Gauguin, a low-budget feature film directed by Maui resident Lee Don Taicher, also the lead actor, is filming for about 22 days on Maui…Stephane Gauger and Elizabeth Ai are producers; Gauger wrote the script and also is DP; Ai is casting director…Budget is under $500,000…

The story takes place in 1903 when a young American seeks out reclusive artist Paul Gauguin on the Marquesas Islands, where he becomes an apprentice to the master painter in the last few months of his life…Maui stands in for Tahiti…

Preproduction begin in mid June. The feature, which will wrap mid to late August, is shooting in the Haiku-Keanae area. A Haiku quonset hut is being used as a sound stage…

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Former Lost co-star Dominic Monaghan is joining the cast of ABC’s new fall drama, FlashForward. Based on Robert J. Sawyer‘s novel, the series stars Joseph Fiennes. The story chronicles the aftermath of a global event in which everyone blacks out for 2 minutes, 17 seconds and has mysterious visions of six months into the future. Co-stars are John Cho, Jack Davenport, Courtney B. Vance, Sonya Walger , Brian F. O’Byrne, Christine Woods, Zachary Knighton and Peyton List.

SOME MAYBES; FEW DEFINITES = KEEP FINGERS CROSSED

SOME MAYBES; FEW DEFINITES = KEEP FINGERS CROSSED

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One Kine Day, the locally made independent film, began shooting on Oahu last Thursday in Waimanalo for a 20 day shoot wrapping Aug. 18The production company is Haolewood. Screenwriter/director is Chuck Mitsui….There are more than 20 exterior Oahu locations being used in the $1-million budgeted feature...One Kine Day is a coming of age story about a 19-year-old Hawaiian skateboarder and his 15-year-old girlfriend. It’s about how he grows up very quickly in one day when his girlfriend tells him she’s pregnant and he loses his job…Angie Laprete and Torry Tukuafua are producers…

Production execs hope to show the film at the Sundance Film Festival in January…Local crew numbers about  60 a day…

Sources say the indie feature The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings is set to film in Hawaii this year…Fox Searchlight in 2007 bought the film rights to Hemmings’ darkly humorous first novel in 2007…The Descendants is set on Kauai featuring an unconventional family drama. It tells the story of a newly widowed father – the descendant of landowners and one of the richest men on Oahu – who takes off with his two rebellious daughters to track down his wife’s lover on Kauai…

Jerry Bruckheimer‘s television pilot Cooler Kings for A&E is taking it slow in developing the greenlit script which had been slated for August to film on Oahu…That shooting date may still happen but Warner Bros’. execs are being tight lipped about it…

Be sure to check out Island Film Group’s updated website – islandfilmgroup.com – especially the resources page which contains links like www.http://www.hawaiimedia.com/ that lists in detail all the services and equipment the company offers through HMI in Halawa Valley…The site also lists with photos, past, current, and future projects…IFG has become a one-stop shop for productions wanting to film in Hawaii needing financing, a soundstage, and production services…

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Island Film Group financed and co-produced Barbarian Princess starring Q’orianka Kilcher, and is also developing a 22-acre soundstage complex in Kapolei, Oahu along with L.A.’s SHM Partners…”While we are working hard to make Hawaii attractive for productions,” IFG’s Roy Tjioe tells Variety, “the ultimate goal is to be self-sustaining, which will enable us to tell more indigenous stories – and to rival Vancouver and New Zealand”…IFG can also be contacted at: P.O. Box 3261, Honolulu, HI 96801; or by calling 808-536-7995…

A family comedy in which kids defeat space aliens to save the world is scheduled to be shot in Hawaii this year, likely Kauai. Soakers is one of two movie of the weeks Island Film Group is considering co producing this year. The production was brought to IFG partners heads Galindez and  Tjioe by Empire Film Group Inc., a Malibu, Calif.-based independent film production and distribution company. Empire execs said the film is a comedy that combines elements of kids-as-cool-heroes movies Spy Kids and Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius. In a plot line released by Empire, twins move to the island of Hawaii with their mother and discover their schoolteachers and police are aliens who’ve been sent to destroy the human race and take over Earth…

The heroes are able to turn the tables on the aliens when they discover the outer space creatures can be annihilated by sneezing on them. The movie is planned for release next summer…

The Hawaii International Film Festival is presenting a special advance screening of Park Chan-wook’s vampire melodrama THIRST. This special screening is open to current HIFF Ohana members only. Director Park will introduce the movie and participate in a Q & A afterwards…The screening is Sunday, July 26 at Regal Dole Cannery Stadium 18 Theaters.  This year THIRST premiered at the Cannes International Film Festival, where it won the Jury Prize.

The screening is limited on a first-come first-serve basis for HIFF Ohana Members ONLY. (Memberships current up to July 2009). Members will be mailed a ticket. If you have not received your ticket, please contact the membership department at membership@hiff.org or the main office at 528-3456. For more information about the screening, or to become a HIFF Ohana member, visit www.hiff.orgTHIRST is scheduled to be released by Focus Features theatrically in Honolulu August 14…

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Speaking of HIFF, the Maui-made feature film Haole Dayz starring local Hawaii actors Pomai Brown and Tess Yong has been submitted to the 2009 Hawaii International Film Festival for consideration. Check out the synopsis at www.haoledayz.com.

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Kim Spanoghe is producer for the Indie Kine Films production…

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Hawaii Film Partners’ 38 episode animated series Ape Escape for Nickelodeon’s NickToons™ premiered on the cable network  July 5…Ape Escape episodes air each Sunday during the 3 p.m. time slot…The series was created at the Hawaii Film Partners’ animation facility in Hawaii Kai…

Based on Sony PlayStation’s popular 1999 interactive game of the same name, Ape Escape is executive produced by Rann Watumull, Gina Watumull, David Jackson, Shauna Shapiro Jackson; Fred Seibert and Kevin Kolde of the Frederator Studios; Rick Privman, and Yumiko Miyano of SONY…Konnie Kwak is the producer and Karl Toerge (Ratzafratz) is the supervising director. The title music is composed by David Jackson…

“This is an historic project…(marking) the first time a television program was animated in Hawaii for a national TV network,” says Rann Watumull…Hawaii Film Partners has financed the production of Ape Escape and has worldwide rights across all media with NickToons™ being awarded the broadcast rights in the United States for a three-year period…Hawaii Film Partners teamed with Showcase Entertainment to exclusively distribute the series in all international territories. The project is a co-production with Frederator Studios…

Good News/Bad News: Baywatch: The Movie is going to be made by Dreamworks relatively soon. Bad News: It’s not being filmed in Hawaii…In fact, executives close to the production say Baywatch: The Movie will barely resemble its television counterpart except for a lot of pretty people, beaches, and, of course, red swimsuits…The film version will be a comedy starring Will Ferrell shot in the Santa Monica-Malibu area where the series was based.. Ferrell and another unnamed comedy actor portray lifeguards from the East Coast with an ambition to be California lifeguards. The pair head to California where the fun begins…The show’s star David Hasselhoff apparently will not be making a cameo…Word not in yet whether Pamela Anderson is making a film appearance…

SOUL SURFER UPDATE AD INFINITUM: The actress who will portray Bethany Hamilton in the bio pic drama Soul Surfer – filming now pushed on Oahu in to mid September for eight weeks – will be announced in the next few weeks…The names of two male A-list actors also may be made public…The revised final script is expected to be approved this week…

Big Island Film Commissioner John Mason expects film and television production through the end of the year in Hawaii County will continue to be “pretty slow”… “The economy has been the main and most obvious problem. The production business is always up and down for the usual reasons. The economy is hurting us and then there was the ongoing SAG strike that thankfully has been resolved. But those two things caused uncertainty in the production business”…

The Big Island Film Office’s budget this year was cut 10 percent and five percent last year…Mason does see some blue sky. Producers – especially independents – have a lot of interest in shooting on the Big Island. “Many people I talked to at the Locations Exo in Santa Monica had projects for Hawaii. They want to come and they’re working on something. Some already are preparing budgets. We didn’t have any of these in the pipeline last year. So I’m optimistic,” Mason said…The Big Island can weather the storm if we continue to get the reality and travel shows, catalogue shoots and our typical business from Japan, the commissioner said…

Lost director and executive producer Jack Bender says there will be plenty of secrets revealed in the upcoming sixth and final season but there also will be “a proper ending.” Bender told a Canadian newspaper that “It’s not going to be a Sopranos-style blackout. The Lost ending is not going to be like that. It’s going to be a real ending.” Bender said the last episode hasn’t been written yet, but has been worked out “in the hearts and minds of the writers and producers.” Lost will begin filming in Hawaii again in August with new episodes set to air in February. Preproduction began this week…

EVENT NOTICE: The Storywise Seminar presented by Jen Grisanti Consultancy Inc. will be held Saturday, Aug. 22 at the Turtle Bay Resort from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m….

The one-day seminar is designed for television and feature writers to help them elevate their scripts to improve their chances to work in the entertainment business…Jen Grisanti will guide writers through teaching them the value of accessing their own story, identifying universal themes and learning how to put this on the page…This event is a five-day retreat that includes three one-on-one consults with Grisanti for your TV or feature scripts. The retreat also will include daily group sessions exchanging their thoughts on scripts by other writers.

Cost for the Storywise Seminar  is $75. Those participating in the five-day writing retreat need to submit a TV or feature script by Aug. 7 to Jen Grisanti at jennifer@jengrisanticonsultancy.com. …


Hawai‘i fans who watched ABC’s The Bachelorette’s Jillian Harris bid aloha to Reid Rosenthal after their romantic date on Maui will be seeing a lot more of the Hawaiian Islands as season five of the hit romance reality show from Warner Horizon Television wraps up on the Big Island in a two-hour season finale July 27…Harris and the final two bachelors – Ed Swiderski and Kiptyn Locke – find themselves on final dates that take them across the Big Island highlighted by an aerial tour of Kïlauea volcano’s active lava flows with Sunshine Helicopters, landing beside a secluded Hilo waterfall for a private barbecue with KapohoKine Adventures, and discovering a remote black sand beach with Captain Zodiac Rafting Adventures…The couples continue their dates with dinner and alone time at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel and The Fairmont Orchid resorts.

Filmmaker Brett Wagner has launched www.WAGNERVISION.com, which he describes  as a new venue for the films, commercials, and occasional musings that are the product of his experiences…”It’s the place to see work and, very sporadically and unreliably via the accompanying Wagnervision BLOG, to read about my activities or to see some entertaining bit of nonsense,” Wagner says…The site went live several weeks ago…

Beginning July 1 the telephone and fax numbers for the Honolulu Film Office  changed to 808-768-6100; fax 808-768-6102…

TAKE NOTE: The production community is buzzing about a likely major shake-up in the Hawaii Film Office…Stay tuned…



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My apologies for disappearing for nearly a month without any notificaion. I took a vacation to Montana’s Glacier National Park to hang with some of  the locals (see Mr. Grizzly above). But now Reel Hawaii is back so all of you in the production biz can start expecting my annoying calls…

Allow me to add my condolences about the passing of the much-respected Hawaii crew Bob Johnson. I regret that I wasn’t here to attend his memorial. I considered Bob a true professional and an honest, straight forward  man. He was always gracious and courteous to me when I visited a production. Bob, I will miss you terribly…

Mahalo…tim

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