It has been a busy summer for “The Manzanar Fishing Club,” and there is more to come.
Since it was released in March, the film — which has been in the works for over seven years — has played in Long Beach, Santa Monica, Pasadena, North Hollywood, Claremont, San Francisco, Berkeley, Palo Alto, Seattle and Costa Mesa, plus eight weeks in Hawaii.
Director/producer Cory Shiozaki and writer/producer Richard Imamura showed their documentary in June at the Consolidated Kahala Theatre in Honolulu and the Kaahumanu 6 in Maui. It also ran at the Consolidated Koko Marina 8 in Honolulu through Aug. 9.
In July, the film was screened in Washington, D.C. by the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. Rep. Judy Chu (D-El Monte), CAPAC chair, presented Shiozaki and Imamura with a Certificate of Congressional Recognition that read, “Your vision and guidance to raise the visibility of the Japanese American internment experience through film is greatly appreciated and truly commendable.”
“The Manzanar Fishing Club” returns to Southern California as the opening night feature at the West Coast Film Festival on Sunday, Aug. 19, at 8 p.m. at the Regency Theatre, 26762 Verdugo St. in San Juan Capistrano. The festival, now in its second year, mixes classic films with new studio releases and homegrown independent projects. For more information, call (949) 661-3435 or visit www.westcoastfilmfest.com.
A week-long run is scheduled from Friday, Aug. 31, to Thursday, Sept. 6, at the AMC South Bay Galleria 16, 1815 Hawthorne Blvd. (at Artesia), Redondo Beach, where trailers are already being shown. Showtimes and tickets will be available at www.amctheatres.com/movie-theatres/amc-south-bay-galleria-16.
The film will then travel to New York to open at AMC’s Empire 25 in Times Square on Sept. 14.
Shiozaki and Imamura chronicle the internment of Japanese Americans from a unique angle — the story of Manzanar internees who slipped out of camp at night, risking arrest or worse, to go fishing in the Sierra Nevada. It was their way of reclaiming their freedom and dignity, if only for a while. The LA Weekly said, “It’s an engrossing film as it explains how and why the simple act of fishing was both meditative and utterly subversive.”