World Premier May 30, 2009
Kahilu Theater - Big Island of Hawaii
For Tickets Call - 808-885-6868

Voyagers - The Discovery of Hawaii

Voyagers is a 62 minute movie based on Herb Kawainui Kane's book, Voyage - The Discovery of Hawaii, published by Island Heritage in 1976. Voyagers is a narrative film, told from the point of view of one of the crew members on a double hulled canoe. It tells the story of the migration from what is now French Polynesia, to the most isolated islands in the world, Hawaii.

  One of the things that makes this movie unique is that every single image in the film, and there are hundreds of them, was drawn or painted by Hawaiian native artist, Herb Kawainui Kane ( ) . To my knowledge this has never been done before in a feature length film. Visually it is a work of art. Each character's face is distinct and memorable, each land and seascape haunting. Herb painted over a dozen new paintings in the last year, just for this film. He is a remarkably talented and prolific artist. Paul Csige ( ) is the director, editor and composer for the film. He, too, has pushed the film making envelope. Paul took Herb's images and applied 2.5 D editing techniques to them. 2.5 D processing is half way between 2 D (dimension) and 3 D. Paul scanned Herb's art into the computer and separated the images into as many as 30 layers to create the visual impression of movement of a camera through an image or animation within the frame. This technique is similar to a very simple panning method used by Ken Burns in his Civil War documentaries in the '90s - but taken to a whole new level of CG sophistication in this story of battles, exile and discovery. Paul Csige is an alumnus of Hawaii Preparatory Academy. He graduated magna cum laude from the Berklee College of Music in 2004 and completed his graduate work at the New York Film Academy in 2007.

The movie, Voyagers, is culturally accurate. Herb Kane is a noted Polynesian historian and expert on canoe design and sailing techniques. Larry Ursua and Danny Akaka Jr. consulted in the preparation of our Hawaiian translations and chants. Maui native instrument specialist, Anthony Natividad, playes nose flute, Maori flute, ukeke, and other indigenous sounds. Our voice over narrator, the voice of Polynesia, is Dennis Evangelista, is from the Big Island. We also recorded local musicians (violins and cellos), performers and singers for the sound track.

The movie is a ground breaking achievement on several levels.

1) Artistically, there has never been anything like it. Every single visual image in the feature length movie was created by one man, Herb Kawainui Kane.

2) On the technical side, this movie is also unique. The editing and directing was done single handed by Paul Csige, an alumnus of Hawaii Preparatory Academy. Paul manipulated many of Herb's images to create realistic effects like camera movement and animation. Paul also added original music and sound effects, most of them recorded on the Big Island.

3) Culturally, Voyagers is a triumph for Polynesia. Whenever possible we used Polynesian performers. The information and images depicted in the movie are historically accurate. Local actor, Dennis Evangelista of Waikoloa, did the voice over narration. Anthony Natividad of Maui played nose flute, Maori flute, 'ukeke and ipu. Kumahula Larry Ursua and Danny Akaka, Jr. helped with Hawaiian translations and singing performances.

Voyagers will be completed in the first half of 2009.