ABOUT THE FILM
Since its theatrical release in 2012, Producer-Director Catherine Bauknight has worked to share this little-known story with the world to help raise awareness of the Hawaiian’s plight. Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty has become an international megaphone for the oft silenced voice of the struggling native Hawaiian people during select screenings in centers of communication and education around the world — including its original premiere at the United States Capitol Building in Washington, DC, at the Pigorini National Museum of History and Ethnography in Rome, the Kana’ina Building on the grounds of Honolulu’s `Iolani Palace (home of the Hawaiian monarchs), the Pacific Peace Forum at The Cathedral of Saint Andrews in Honolulu, at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York City and Geneva Switzerland and in numerous smaller venues throughout the United States and Canada. Hawaii A Voice For Sovereignty took four years to shoot and edit.
This untold story of the long struggle of the Hawaiian people, the Kanaka Maoli (people of the land), to regain their social and economic sustainability following the illegal 1893 overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai’i by U.S. businessmen and military forces is a revealing message to the world about what can happen when a small, sustainable island society is separated from their land and ocean resources. Their sustained efforts to perpetuate the culture and to maintain their connection to the land is sensitively revealed in Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty.
The film has received numerous accolades and awards throughout the U.S. and in New Zealand and received its 8th award on July 30, 2014: “Best Global Documentary Film Creating Change” during the Pacific Talent Film Festival in Los Angeles. Other awards include:
Audience Award Best Hawai’i Film • Maui Film Festival
Best Documentary Film • New York Independent International Video and Film Festival
Best Environmental Film • New York Independent International Video and Film Festival
Mana Wairoa Award • Maori Film Festival (New Zealand)
Best Global Documentary Film Creating Change • Pacific Talent Film Festival
Best Environmental Film • Red Nation Film Festival
Best Film • American Indian Movement Film Festival
Allen Willis Documentary Award • Berkeley Video and Film Festival
The cast includes many respected indigenous Hawaiians and scholars including Dr. Haunani-Kay Trask, Professor Kaleikoa Ka’eo and Hawai`i State Senator Kalani English.
The rich soundtrack includes the music of renown Hawaiian artists Richard Ho`opi`i, George Kahumoku, Henry Kapono, Skippy Ioane, Willie K, Ke`eaumoku Kapu, Cyril Pahinui, Lono, Charles Ka`upu, Makana, Hanalei Colleado, Keali`i Blaisdell, Wilmont Kahaiali`i, Kamuela Rodrigues, and Mark Keali`i Ho`omalu.
On March 19, 2015, the Bernard Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) Eclectics Class at California State University Fullerton sponsored a public screening of Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty.
The film has been collected by many universities and libraries including the University of Hawai`i at Manoa, Kamehameha Schools, and the International Library of New Zealand.
Video Librarian Online
Hawaii A Voice For Sovereignty
“What emerges is a sense of the growing desire of Polynesian Hawaiians to return to an embrace of spirituality and connection with the natural world, as well as a determination to right the land grabs and disenfranchisement of the past. Beautiful Hawaiian scenery provides a lush backdrop to this informative, thought-provoking film.”
WHAT OTHERS SAY
“Catherine Bauknight has beautifully captured a timeless moment in the unending struggle of the Hawaiian people to restore their Sovereign Nation. Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty is a thought-provoking documentary that respectfully canvasses their journey, hopes and dreams.”
“Viewing Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty is like having Queen Liliuokalani re-appearing in Washington, D.C. with the thousands of her people who signed the petition protesting the overthrow of their monarchy and the proposed 1898 annexation. I can hear them shouting to the U.S. congress, ‘We are still here asking and hoping for justice and equity.’ Hawaii A Voice for Sovereignty allows the people of the host culture of Hawaii to express their need for acknowledgment and respect for their contribution in making Hawaii what it is today and what it can be tomorrow. Imua Hawaii Imua. We the people of the host culture are still here.”
NOTE: Co-Star of The Twilight Saga, Kiowa Gordon is a member of the Hualapai Indian tribe of Northern Arizona. Gordon said, “Hawaii A Voice For Sovereignty is about the connection of the people to their land. Take care of the earth, don’t let it die out, don’t let it fade. Connecting to the land and our spirituality is a way of life.”