Steve Sue – Executive Producer, Producer & Writer
Steve has bitten off a pretty big bite as a first-time producer making “Shaka, A Story of Aloha.” Besides Shaka, Steve serves as Chairman at ID8, a Hawai’i 501C3 nonprofit organization that fosters ideation and expression to create positive impacts. At ID8 he serves as Head of Studio for ID8 Studios, a digital media soundstage operated for the State of Hawai’i. Steve is also a social venturer as a partner at SaaS Ventures, a software development and digital marketing firm. Past experience includes being a story and conceptual expert leading the creation of theme parks, live entertainment productions, corporate theater events, retail, foodservice, product brands, and resort casinos. Local Hawai‘i projects include creating ChefZone for Y. Hata, rebranding Waikiki Trolley for Enoa Corp, developing Punahou’s GlobalAloha volunteerism app, and developing Feeding Hawaii Together’s “The Pantry” app.
Bryan Spicer – Executive Producer
Bryan is an award-winning producer and director with a 35-year reputation for consistently delivering his cinematic style to high-profile film and television projects. Early in his career, Bryan worked with Director Steven Spielberg at Amblin and ILM, where he also directed for Robert Zemeckis and Ivan Reitman. His TV credits include: “The X-Files,” “Castle,” “24,” “CSI,” and many other projects with Warner Bros., Sony, Amazon, CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX, Disney, and Universal Studios. Since 2010, Bryan has lived and worked in Hawai‘i, producing and directing more than 200 episodes of “Hawaii Five-0” and “Magnum P.I.” He purchased Sight & Sound Productions in 2020, and continues to help grow the Hawai‘i film, television, and commercial industry.
Henry Kapono – Music Director
Known as “Kapono”, the Hawaiian word for righteous, Henry is pure Hawaiian, born and raised in Kapahulu. Though he had no formal musical training, he fell in love with the guitar and in the 1970s soared to the forefront of Hawaiian music with the duo Cecilio & Kapono. They became the first Hawai‘i group to achieve a national recording contract with Columbia Records. Always musically adventurous, Henry launched a solo career in 1981. In 2017, the legacy of Henry’s music was featured in the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. In 2018, he launched the Henry Kapono Foundation supporting Hawaii’s music and the Arts. Henry has appeared in major motion pictures, films, and many television appearances.
Alex Bocchieri – Director
Alex is an award winning Native Hawaiian filmmaker who lives and works in Honolulu. After graduating from the University of Hawai‘i, Alex turned his passion for storytelling toward creating documentaries about pressing social issues, leading to his work on the celebrated film, Ike: Knowledge is Everywhere. From there he told stories of local Hawai‘i heroes when he directed the independent feature film, GO FOR BROKE, a groundbreaking Hawai‘i-produced war drama that would go on to screen at festivals around the world. Since then he has written and directed award winning short films, alongside working with nonprofits to profile individuals and institutions that are trying to make this world a better place. The connecting thread of his creative work that extends into his commercial projects is the desire to use his unique visual style to share real human stories, spotlight those that do good, and inspire action. In 2022, Alex was selected to be a part of Disney Launchpad, a pipeline program to train filmmakers to work in the Studio system, while he creates content for Disney+.
Kristle Backe – Director of Photography
Kristle Backe is an award-winning cinematographer and director born in the Philippines and raised in Palau, who has worked in documentary, commercials, PSAs, and music videos. She received her bachelor’s degree in film production from the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and studied business at Institut d’Economie Scientifique Et de Gestion’s School of Management in Paris, France. Films she has written and directed have shown at film festivals around the world, including this prestigious Shanghai International Film Festival. She is currently developing a new mixed-media film project to be released in 2023, while working as a freelance cinematographer in Honolulu, HI.
Photo by Darryl Watanabe
Sean Morris – Associate Producer
Sean is president of S. Morris and Associates, LLC, a marketing and public relations firm specializing in Hawaii and Asia markets. Sean is also known as a food writer with regular columns in Lighthouse Hawaii, HI Luxury, and Oahu’s Best Coupons online and as a culinary personality on the Japanese television show “Hawaii Ni Koi Shite” aired on BS Twellv. Sean has been featured as a food personality on Hawaii culinary topics in Rurubu, Chikyu No Arukikata, Hawaii Style, Aloha Express, Wagamama Aruki, Sweet, FRaU, an an, Gold, Hanako, Brutus, Figaro Japon, Josei Seven, JAL Skyward, Hawaiian Breeze Lani Lani, Delta Sky Japan, Vogue China, ELLE Men China, Allure Korea, TBS “Wadai No Okoku,” BS Fuji TV “Koyama Kundo Tokyo Kaigi” (with Koyama Kundo, Herbie Yamamoto, and Masataka Matsutoya), BS 11 “Otona No Off,” TV Tokyo “ABChanZoo,” (with the members of Johnny’s A-B-C-Z), Fuji TV “Niji Iro Jean,” NHK “Nidotabi,” TBS “Nogizaka 46 Hawaii Special,” KIRO Radio “Seattle Kitchen” (with restaurateurs Tom Douglas and Thierry Rautureau), as well as in Naoyuki Honda’s book, “Hawaii Best Restaurant 2015.” Sean has also written food-related stories for Allure Korea, Penthouse Australia, FrolicHawaii.com, and One-Six Kaimuki to Kahala. His gourmet guide to Hawaii featuring over 365 eateries in Hawaii is slated to be released in Japan soon. His latest culinary excursions may be found on Instagram at @incurablepicure.
Jill Kuramoto – Associate Producer
A storyteller at heart, Jill is a communications professional who combines her expertise in journalism, public relations and video production to lead communications strategy and brand management. She currently is the Chief Communications Officer with RKT Media Hawaii and a consultant with Pineapple Tweed PR & Marketing. Alongside 20 years in broadcast journalism as anchor and reporter, her TV credits include appearances on “Lost”, “The Last Resort”, “The River” and “Hawaii Five-0.” Jill is active in community service and is a member of the distinguished Selection Committee of the Living Treasures of Hawaii and has been nominated to serve on the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts.
Ryan Kawailani Ozawa – Associate Producer
Ryan is a native Hawaiian journalist, technologist, and media maker with more than three decades of experience in traditional and online publishing, digital marketing, and community building. As founder of Hawaii Hui LLC, he provides strategic consulting services to Hawaii non-profits, organizations and businesses. He has also cofounded several startups and non-profits focused on technology and sustainability. A graduate of Mililani High School, he holds a journalism degree from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa and is the proud father of three.
Avian Ku – Associate Producer
Minette Lew-McCabe – Associate Producer
Minette was bitten by the film bug while attending New York University. She has worked in various roles on numerous independent productions in New York, Los Angeles, and Hawaiʻi, including the Sundance Award-winning “Picture Bride” and cult classic “But I’m a Cheerleader.” She helped co-write and production manage the PBS documentary, “Daniel Inouye: An American Story.” For “Shaka, A Story of Aloha,” she administrates office functions.
Robert “Lono” Ikuwa – Cultural Advisor
Lono is the former Director of Cultural-Based Education at Kamehameha Schools. He has designed and published 15 curricular projects and programs in Japanese, Hawaiian, and English and has received multiple awards. He is also the author of “Tutu Hamana: The Shaka Sign Story.”
SHAKA FILM IS PART OF A MOVEMENT