Pandemic-postponed film screening “Proof of Loyalty” rescheduled to Nov. 13 at the MACC
The Maui Arts & Cultural Center presents a screening of the acclaimed documentary film “Proof of Loyalty: Kazuo Yamane and the Nisei Soldiers of Hawai‘i” in the McCoy Studio Theater Sunday, Nov. 13 at 3 p.m. The film was originally scheduled to be screened in March of 2020, but was postponed because of the pandemic.
The new screening on Nov. 13, will be followed by a Q&A session with the film’s directors Lucy Ostrander and Don Sellers.
The film tells the story of Kazuo Yamane, a Japanese-American from Hawai‘i, who is an example of the Nisei soldiers who battled prejudice and discrimination while striving to loyally serve their country.
As quoted by the Asian American International Film Festival, “This film may be about men from decades past but it could not be more relevant.”
The Nisei soldiers were Japanese-Americans who fought in World War II. The US tried to ban them from military service, but these veterans ultimately became some of the most decorated soldiers in history.
Kazuo Yamane, a Nisei Japanese American from Hawai‘i, played a crucial strategic role in World War II. The extraordinary service of Kazuo and his fellow Nisei, mostly untold, ultimately changed the course of US history.
Drafted just before the war, he became part of what would be the War Department’s most successful social experiment, taking Nisei troops from Hawai‘i and forming the 100th Infantry Battalion, a unit made up of a group entirely related to a country the US was at war with.
These American citizens used whatever skills they had to protect their beloved country, even while many Americans suspected them of being the enemy. The War Department trusted them and through them gained both a military advantage by strength and sacrifice on the battlefield to important intelligence behind the lines.
Their success was significant, but Kazuo was plucked from their ranks for his exceptional knowledge of Japanese, which would lead him to the Pentagon, to a secret facility in northern Maryland, and finally, to serving under President Eisenhower in Europe.
The film has garnered multiple plaudits and awards at film festivals throughout the world. It won the Audience Choice Award at the Asian American International Film Festival in New York and has been shown at festivals in Los Angeles, Chicago, Seattle, among many others.
Author Pamela Rotner Sakamoto claimed that the film is ”…a superb lens to view the WWII contribution of Japanese American soldiers from Hawai‘i. Through stunning, little-known footage and precise narration, “Proof of Loyalty” captures the sad irony that those we discriminate against may be among our most able, tireless, and faithful. A meticulous, powerful, and all too timely film.”
Tickets are $20 plus applicable fees and kids 12 & under are half-price.
Tickets go on sale online only to MACC members Tuesday, Sept. 27 and to the general public Wednesday, Sept. 28. To become a MACC member and receive advance purchase privileges among other benefits, log on to MauiArts.org/membership. MACC members at the ‘Ohi‘a Level and above qualify for advance ticket purchases.
All ticket sales are online only at MauiArts.org. The MACC Box Office is not open for window sales but is available for ticketing inquiries only Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., by phone at 808-242-SHOW (7469) or email at [email protected].