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Hawai‘i Film and Television Industry Seeing Record Number of Projects

Tech. Sgt. Jerome Tayborn
U.S Air Force

A record number of film and television productions in Hawai‘i has the local industry booming again.

Hawai‘i Film Commissioner Donne Dawson told Hawaii Public Radio six projects are currently in production or recently wrapped. Among them are ABC’s Doogie Kamealoha, M.D., and CBS’s upcoming NCIS: Hawai‘i.

Larry Teng, executive producer of the new NCIS show and director of several Hawaii Five-0 episodes, said the islands have a special place in his heart.

"I’m going to be directing three of the first four episodes and hopefully other Asian directors coming in to fulfill this chair," he said. "But this is the place where I learned to be proud of being Asian American. You know I grew up in New York and kind of had my head down about it for much of my life and it was here where I realized that being who I am and doing what I do can really have a significant positive impact on people."

Dawson said productions are not limited to O‘ahu. The U.S. version of the popular reality show “Love Island” is set to begin production in Hilo, and the HBO series “The White Lotus” recently wrapped production on Maui.

This story aired as a part of a special call-in show on June 4, 2021.

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