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1 item from 2014

Hawaii’s Big Island Film Festival Grows While Highlighting Indies

21 May 2014 10:00 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Back in 2003, Leo and Jan Sears traveled from their home on the Big Island of Hawaii to neighboring Maui to attend the Maui Film Festival. That’s where they became inspired to start a film festival of their own.

“We were sitting with the film commissioner from the Big Island and we said to her, ‘We really need something like this,’” Jan recalls.

“The commissioner answered, ‘Well, all it takes is someone to do it.’ Now, you don’t just say something like that to Leo. We’ve organized lots of events before. So we figured we’d start small and see what happens.”

After two years of planning, the duo launched the Big Island Film Festival in 2006; 600 people attended.

Nine years later, the fest’s latest edition is expected to draw up to 2,400 people. Leo is the event’s executive director; Jan is producer. Officially dubbed Big Island Film »

- Peter Caranicas

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