EuroCinema brings excitement to Waikiki

October 19th, 2011

Nadine Kam photos
Gregg Sulkin joins Princess Dialta Alliata di Montereale on stage as winner of EuroCinema Hawai’i’s inaugural Rising Star Award.

Scottish director Lynn Ramsey’s thriller “We Need to Talk About Kevin” (UK/USA) nearly swept the 2nd annual EuroCinema Hawai’i Awards ceremony Oct. 15 on the Great Lawn at the Moana Surfrider Resort & Spa.

The film won three of the Tiffany-designed trophies, including Best Director for Ramsey, Best Actress for Tilda Swinton, and the Princess Dialta Alliata di Montereale Award for Best Film.

More than 400 guests gathered on the lawn at the Moana to witness the event, while mingling with filmmakers and celebs, including cast members from “Hawaii Five-O” and ABC’s dramatic thriller, “The River.”

Other award winners were Peter Mullan, named Best Actor for his role in Paddy Considine’s “Tyrannosaur” (Ireland), and in the Hawaii student filmmaker competition, Lana Dang of the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaii at Manoa won $3,000 for the Best Student Film, “Pa‘ahana.”

But the most excitement of the evening greeted young British actor Gregg Sulkin, a charmer best known for his appearances on Disney’s “The Wizards of Waverly Place,” and soon to make his big screen appearance in the feature film “White Frog.” The film is about a high-school student, played by The Twilight Saga’s Booboo Stewart,  with mild Asperger’s syndrome. The film is directed by Quentin Lee, produced by Chris Lee, and also features Kelly Hu, who attended the event. Sulkin received the first EuroCinema Hawai‘i Rising Star Award.

Banners and a red carpet signaled something big happening at the Moana. Before guests started arriving, tourists snapped their own pictures on the red carpet.

The EuroCinema Hawai‘i Jury selecting the award winners were American Film Institute professor and film producer Dr. Barry Sabath, The Doris Duke at the Honolulu Academy of Arts film curator Gina Caruso, Cinema Paradise Film Festival director Chris Kahunahana and Honolulu Weekly film critic Ryan Senaga.

In addition to the winning films, this year’s lineup in the film festival continuing through Oct. 23 are “The Artist” (France), “The Fairy” (Belgium), “The Salt of Life” (Italy), “The Kid With a Bike” (Belgium), and “Le Havre” (Finland, France, Germany), as well as the World Film Foundation’s restored digital print of the Fellini classic “La Dolce Vita.”  Find out more at

Founded in 2009, EuroCinema Hawai ‘i is dedicated to increasing the cultural relations between Hawaii and Europe, and to providing financial support Hawaii-based student filmmakers through annual scholarships and financial awards.

Excitement for the event built up early, beginning with limousine arrivals in front of the Moana, were dozens of tourists lined up to see what was going on, joining the papparazzi in taking photos of guests in gowns and black tie.

Inside, Malika Dudley welcomed celebs onto the red carpet with impromptu interviews. From there, most gravitated to the bar to sample creations by master mixologist Joey Gottesman, and the EuroCinema Hawaii’s signature cocktail, The Fellini, created by Nobu’s Dave Newman, courtesy of Disaronno and Young’s Market Hawaii.

Food stations offered a mini culinary excursion through Europe. Richard Lancaster of the The Beachhouse at the Moana, promoted Italy with duck confit and a risotto station; Kai at the Sheraton Waikiki’s Darren Demaya paid tribute to France with maple duck breast and braised red cabbage;  and SALT Kitchen & Tasting Bar also honored Italy with a cannellini bean ragout with Shinsato pork and panzanella salad. Meanwhile, the Kahala Resort’s Wayne Hirabayashi pulled double duty, representing Italy through Hoku’s steak bruschetta and pasta Zafferino, and England, through Plumeria Beach House’s offering of British bangers and sticky toffee pudding.

Board of directors members Patrick Gey, left, and Wanda Watumull, with Rajan Watumull.

Actor Gregg Sulkin brought his mom Jan. In Sulkin, Hawaii film enthusiasts may discovered the next Robert Pattinson. His star quality was recognized with the inaugural EuroCinema Hawai’i Rising Star Award.

Malika Dudley greeted “Hawaii Five-O” producer on the red carpet, and Steve Boyum.

Several groups of friends gathered to have their photos taken on the red carpet.

Last year, EuroCinema Hawai’i partnered with the Hawai’i International Film Festival to create a festival within a festival, and HIFF executive director Chuck Boller, left, was there to show his support, with Qi Marie and John Michael White.

From left, Alvin Chung, with Rising Star Gregg Sulkin and his mom Jan, Carol Brittingham and EuroCinema Hawai’i Board of Directors member Terry Hubbard.

Hubbard, Chung, Sulkin and “White Frog” producer Chris Lee.

Terry O’Quinn of “Lost” and “Hawaii Five-O,” met the competition in Daniel Zacapa, who’s in the cast of “The River,” set to debut on ABC early next year. Elizabeth Lum enjoyed meeting the stars.

One day before the event, LeSportsac’s Cindy Eastman was hosting a new “Mele” print launch, so it was a busy weekend before heading for the mainland.

Condesa Azroa Nora Meijide-Gentry with her daughter Corin Gentry-Balding.

Designer Andy South on the red carpet with Malika Dudley and Pono Fernandez. I later told him the spikes on his soldiers were potentially hazardous to someone my size, at eye level when I gave him a hug.

From left, Brianna Acosta, a candidate for Miss Hawaii USA 2013, with Kimi Matar and Karen Herndon.

Raiatea Helm, with Guy Sibilla, is more often seen on music industry red carpet events.

A guest was intrigued by models Mayo Christi, Caleb Shinobi and Angela Byrd.

The wristbands were an upgrade from the usual paper bands.

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