Maui Arts & Entertainment

Shaka documentary to debut at film festival in Los Angeles

Listen to this Article
1 minute
Loading Audio... Article will play after ad...
Playing in :00

A feature-length documentary on the history of the Shaka in Hawai‘i is coming to the silver screen.

“SHAKA, The Story of Aloha,” will make its world debut as an official selection of the Visual Communications (VC) Film Fest 2024, formally known as the LA Asian Pacific Film Festival, during the event in May.

“Shaka, The Story of Aloha” is a heart-warming exploration of the gesture’s origins, meanings, and uses that becomes a quest for the secrets to making and maintaining the concept of paradise. The film frames the belief and attitude that anyone can use the shaka to make their own form of paradise anywhere in the world. Through the film, the shaka serves as a mecca of positivity and sharing of the aloha spirit.

“The shaka is used and recognized around the world. But few know where it came from, the depth of its meaning, or even how to throw a legit Hawai’i-style shaka,” said the film’s producer/writer Steve Sue. “It’s the best-known story of Hawai‘i that’s never been told, which sets up a great subject for a film. And it’s truly the secret to paradise.”


Sue said his initial goal for the film was to produce a 20-minute short for classroom use but the story turned out to be bigger than anyone could have imagined.

“In the end, we discovered the Shakaʻs magic and how it’s the secret to creating and maintaining paradise, he also noted.

As one of the largest showcases of Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander filmmaking in the country, the festival will take place May 1-10 in Los Angeles, California. This year’s festival is dedicated to cultivating joy and wellness within ourselves and our communities.


“SHAKA, The Story of Aloha” will be screened on May 2, the festival’s opening night, at the Japanese American National Museum at 100 N. Central Avenue in Los Angeles.

For more information on the festival, click here Tickets are now available.


Sponsored Content

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay in-the-know with daily or weekly
headlines delivered straight to your inbox.


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Maui Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments