HIFF COVID-19 Update

By Gianni Minga | March 17, 2020

Aloha HIFF Partners, Sponsors, Supporters, Members, and Audiences,

Since news broke about the coronavirus (COVID-19), we have been closely monitoring the situation and taking the necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of our team members, our patrons, and our community. We want to be part of the solution to the current challenges we are facing. Our thoughts go out to anyone who has been directly affected. We hope that you, your family, friends and colleagues are safe and well, and are taking the necessary precautions to keep it that way. HIFF has always been and remains committed to best practices to uphold and protect public health and safety.

To that end, and to respect the safety of our audiences and members, we made the difficult decision last week, in compliance with revised CDC guidelines, to postpone our annual HIFF Spring Showcase until the end of August 2020. We are working with theaters to set an exact date and we’ll continue to communicate updates on our website at www.hiff.org, through our eNews, as well as social media on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

As an organization we would like to reiterate our commitment to the community in knowing the power of film and media in promotion of cultural understanding. We acknowledge both the uncertainty and severe financial impact of the current crisis and recognize that we, too, as a nonprofit reliant on donations and events, will not be immune to its effects. We will remain vigilant and will do our utmost to ensure the wide-reaching platform we provide as HIFF will survive beyond this current crisis. HIFF has asked our team to practice social distancing in all aspects of their daily lives, which includes working from home, avoiding all non-essential travel, and postponed planned staff and community gatherings.

HIFF is also acutely aware of how much of a burden this situation is to small businesses, independent creatives, and organizations working in the arts, film, and non-profit sectors. We know the power of film to educate, inspire, and entertain is more important now than ever.  HIFF looks forward to providing platforms that will safely bring people together again, to share experiences, and to celebrate our connections through film, as well as celebrating our resilient community here and internationally at our 40th annual Hawai’i International Film Festival presented by Halekulani in November 2020.

HIFF stands in solidarity with all communities impacted by this unprecedented circumstance, especially the local economy, tourism industry, and all individuals committed to sharing stories from Asia and the Pacific Islands. We are beyond grateful to all those working on the frontlines in the medical field and government.  We encourage everyone to please take this time to support your local community as much as you can, as our community is our foundation.

HIFF is proud to support upcoming international filmmakers and contribute to their success over the last 40 years. We are proud to support local filmmakers and students through educational initiatives and exchange programs along with exhibition of works in Hawai’i and Internationally at festivals around the world, and via Hawaiian Airlines.  We are proud to support various local film festivals as well as mainland and international film festivals.  And we are proud to consistently bring the local community the best in quality and quantity of international cinema including numerous world and international premieres and unique opportunities for the public to interact with world-renowned talent and industry representatives.  The continuing desire from our local community for international and local cinema is evident and the value, impact, and support of our Hawai’i community in recognizing and highlighting filmmakers and their works is also clear.  We appreciate your continued support during this time. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate this situation together and work to keep our entire HIFF and Hawai’i ‘ohana healthy.

Sincerely,

Beckie Stocchetti
HIFF Executive Director