‘Lil Tokyo Reporter’ Coming to JAMsj

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Chris Tashima as Sei Fujii.

Chris Tashima as Sei Fujii.

SAN JOSE — The Japanese American Museum of San Jose, 535 N. Fifth St. in San Jose Japantown, will host a screening of “Lil Tokyo Reporter” on Saturday, June 25, at 1 p.m.

Immediately after the screening, there will be a special book reading and Q&A with lead actor Chris Tashima, director Jeffrey Gee Chin, and executive producer Fumiko Carole Fujita. DVDs will be available for sale at the event.

“Lil Tokyo Reporter” is a narrative short film based on the true-life struggles of Sei Fujii (played by Tashima), immigrant pioneer, publisher, and civil rights leader in the Japanese American community. The story focuses on his efforts to defend his deteriorating community during the Great Depression.

As the film begins, Fujii promotes the community’s accomplishments through his new radio program and newspaper. Attorney J. Marion Wright (Sewell Whitney), who worked with Fujii to build a much-needed hospital for Japanese Americans, brings to Fujii’s attention a group running the local gambling hall and taking advantage of customers. Fujii must make a decision to confront the local baddies through his reporting and newspaper, possibly putting himself and his business at risk.

The cast also includes Eijiro Ozaki, Ikuma Ando and Keiko Agena. The screenplay was written by Guinevere Turner (“American Psycho”), based on research by Fujita and the Little Tokyo Historical Society. The film was produced by Mayon Denton and Michael Iinuma in association with Visual Communications and the Little Tokyo Historical Society. The team was sponsored by the California Civil Liberties Public Education Program and the Terasaki Foundation.

Free with museum admission. Seating is limited. To register, call JAMsj at (408) 294-3138 or register online at: http://goo.gl/forms/fHDIzOS3AU

Director Jeffrey Gee Chin sets up a 1930s street scene.

Director Jeffrey Gee Chin sets up a 1930s street scene.

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