Freestyle: ‘Showdown’ moves to Kakaako

Nov. 15, 2013 | 0 Comments


It’s time, once again, for “Showdown in Chinatown” and the film competition’s end-of-year championship blowout.


2013 Championships

» Where: Lana Lane Studios, Kakaako
» When: 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16 (afterparty to follow)
» Cost: Free; donations encouraged
» Info:

The twist on “Showdown in Chinatown” in the past few months is that it’s not being held in Chinatown — you’ll find the championship competition and afterparty at Lana Lane Studios, down an alley adjacent to Auahi Street and part of the excitement surrounding Kakaako’s monthly shopping, fashion and food event, “Honolulu Night Market.” The competition changed venues when Chinatown bar NextDoor shut down earlier this year. The bar eventually changed hands and is back in business, but “SIC” has moved on.

Lana Lane is a natural site for the event, since it is a creative base for artists, many of whom are involved with Kakaako street-art festival POW! WOW! Hawai’i.

“I’ve been speaking with the artists in the loft and they are all so supportive and excited to have it there,” producer Cyrina Hadad told me, shortly after we walked past Lana Lane to an empty warehouse on Cooke Street that may house the competition next year. Kakaako continues to be the dynamic site of much creative opportunity, and I’ll have more on that for you in a future post.

“Showdown in Chinatown” is at its best during the championships, when filmmakers have two full months to put their entry together. As always, filmmakers have to work with a certain list of broad parameters; this time around, it’s the topic “A Paradox,” props that fit the category “City Lights,” and a line of dialogue: “What is your secret?”

Films can be up to 10 minutes long, but should be short enough to keep the amped-up crowd’s attention. Winning teams from the past two years have been invited, along with other public “wild card” entries; a short list of the 12 best films will be screened on Saturday.

It’s a tribute to the creative abilities of Honolulu’s filmmakers, both professional and amateur, that “SIC” has come this far. Join in and help celebrate. It’s an all-ages event, with films on two screens — one outdoors and one inside where a bar for those 21-and-up will be available.

After the films, party with rockers Animal Mother and DJs Anton Glamb, Rooks Royal and Davey Shindig (subject of an “On the Record” profile on the Pulse earlier this week).
Elizabeth Kieszkowski is editor of TGIF, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s weekly arts and entertainment section. Reach her via email at or follow her on Twitter.

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