Maui Arts & Entertainment

Hawai‘i International Film Festival announces two events this spring on O‘ahu

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  • “The Convert” – HIFF/MIster Smith Entertainment.
  • “The Roundup: Punishment” – HIFF/K-Movie Entertainment
  • “The Roundup: Punishment” – HIFF/K-Movie Entertainment
  • On location BTS from the movie “One Winter.” (Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. Dunedin, New Zealand). Photo: Marc Weakley/Cereal TV
  • “The Convert” – HIFF/MIster Smith Entertainment.

For the first time, the Hawai‘i International Film Festival will present two festivals this spring on Oʻahu.

The 27th annual HIFF Spring Showcase presented by Halekulani will entertain film fans March 21-28; and the HIFF ‘Ōpio Fest, an inaugural youth film festival, will take place April 5-7. Both festivals will be presented at Consolidated Kahala Theaters.

The Spring Showcase is HIFF’s annual “mini-festival,” showcasing an encore of HIFF43 award-winning Made in Hawai‘i films, alongside 20 new feature films, including several Hawai‘i premieres from the Sundance film festival.


The HIFF ‘Ōpio Fest will be a three-day family event dedicated to showcasing and celebrating short films made by Hawai’i’s young filmmakers. The event will include enriching panels and youth activities. General admission tickets are free for teachers and students. Presentations of students’ films are followed by in-person question-and-answer sessions with the student filmmakers and the audience.

“We are thrilled to expand our programming this spring with the return of the HIFF Spring Showcase, showcasing the best of the year’s early cinema, including films from Sundance and Berlinale, and announce ‘Ōpio Fest, HIFFs inaugural Youth Film Festival,” said Beckie Stocchetti, HIFF executive director. “We are excited about every film in the Spring Showcase, and proud to open with Māori director Lee Tamahori’s return to Aotearoa New Zealand in “The Convert,” a historical epic starring Guy Pearce and Te Kohe Tuhaka that serves as a fascinating perspective of western colonialism and a tremendous feat of reclamation — a Māori story told by a Māori director in the Māori language with a large Māori cast.”

The closing night film for the Spring Showcase will be Korean film star Don Lee’s latest movie, “The Roundup: Punishment.” The film is the fourth installment of Lee’s “Monster Cop” film series.


“This is a major get, especially since the film just had its world premiere at the Berlin Film Festival and HIFF is its next destination,” Stocchetti said.

Last fall, HIFF43 honored Lee, known for films including “Train to Busan” and Marvel’s “The Eternals.”

“Local fans were incredibly excited to meet him,” Stocchetti said.


The debut of ‘Ōpio Fest will welcome a slate of special guests, including actress Auli’i Cravalho, known for her roles in “Mean Girls” and and Disney’s “Moana.”

“For the past decade, HIFF has greatly invested in our HIFF Education programs, including free film showcases, opportunities for content creation and contests, guest filmmaker campus visits across the state, student advisory committees and more, to develop and support Hawaiʻi’s student filmmakers and nurture the next generation of cinematic storytellers and film fans,” Stocchetti said. “We are honored to bring this new Festival to audiences of all ages in Hawai’i.”

For the full lineup of films at both events, visit the HIFF website here.


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