Posted October 12, 2011
"Native Of Owhyhee", a feature documentary film, is being
broadcast on 'Olelo Television NATV Channel 53. The film shows
Hawaiian history over a period of many centuries, focusing on the
blending of cultures as native chiefs and commoners welcomed
American Christian missionaries. It has 56 expert speakers and 10
Hawaiian narrators (listed below); over 1000 historical images,
historical film-clips, great original Hawaiian music, and spectacular
cinematography. There's a link for "on demand" internet viewing
already available to anyone throughout the world. Each of the
film's 3 parts will be broadcast on TV in Honolulu at least 4 times
from October 25 through November 18, 2011; schedule provided below.
Motto of the film: Filmmaker Jo Danieli identifies the motto of the
film: "I would like to quote Kumu Rubellite Kawena Kinney Johnson,
one kupuna speaking in the film: 'Spirit is not racial, it is universal',
and that is indeed the motto of the film."
Summary of film: In the mid 19th century, Hawaii turned from an
ancient "pagan" society into one of the most literate Christian
nations in the world, leaving behind eras of tribal cults and
sacrifices, of legendary magical ways of living. The history of
Hawaii began over 1000 years ago. It continued with Captain
Cook's arrival in 1778, the unification of Hawaii by Kamehameha
The Great, and the destruction of the ancient religion by
Kamehameha II in 1819. Meanwhile several young native sailors
had gone to America and made their way to Yale divinity school.
Henry Opukaha'ia became a fervent Christian and great orator. He
persuaded American missionaries to come to Hawaii. He died
before the voyage; but 3 natives, including the Crown Prince of
Kaua'i, accompanied the first group of missionaries, who arrived in
1820. Part 1 focuses on events in Hawaii before 1820, while Parts
2 and 3 trace the role of the missionaries and the cooperative
mingling of cultures during the following decades, as Hawaii
became a constitutional monarchy with private property and the
rule of law.
Writer, director, producer, editor, videographer: Jo Danieli. Ms.
Danieli is currently with her family in Vienna, Austria, but can be
reached by email at
Producer/director of photography and post-production: Robert C.
Stone. Mr. Stone's contact information is
222 Haulani Street
Makawao, HI 96768-8606
Author of this media release with permission of Jo Danieli:
Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
46-255 Kahuhipa St. Apt. 1205
Kane'ohe, HI 96744
tel/fax (808) 247-7942
Recommended publicity photo of native Hawaiian Henry Opukaha'ia
(missionary spelling in English was Obookiah)
(Courtesy of findagrave.com)
The 390 minute film has been divided into 3 parts.
Each part is 2 hours and 11 minutes, and will be broadcast at least 4 times (broadcast schedule below).
All 3 parts are also immediately available "on demand" (along with
user-friendly downloads for Windows Media Player and Macintosh
Silverlight Player) at
Viewing "on demand" allows the film to be viewed on a personal computer at anytime a viewer wishes, where the viewing can be stopped and restarted, but not saved. 'Olelo TV will probably maintain availability of the film "on demand" for an unspecified number of weeks after the broadcast schedule ends.
The film can also be viewed on the internet without needing any software download, at those times when it is actually being broadcast on television in Honolulu. See the link for livestream viewing immediately after the broadcast schedule, below.
Filmmaker Jo Danieli says: "The feature documentary "Native Of
Owhyhee" (390 min.) has always been a private project, made
without any funding through several years, from the private
resources of the filmmakers due to sincere interest in Hawaiian
history and culture – since it reaches beyond boundaries of
geography and ethnicity. It is to this day an educational effort by
all the participants, and the filmmakers Jo Danieli and Robert C.
Stone wish to thank all the speakers and narrators for sharing
their "mana'o" as well as the contributors of imagery, music and
other material for their cooperation"
Filmmaker Jo Danieli also says: "The speakers' names are
intentionally not shown while they are speaking, because it is
about the storytelling and the content, and not about who says
what -- perceptions today are often affected by someone's title,
and I wanted to avoid that division between the speakers. All
names and titles are shared at the end of the film in their entirety
and order or appearance. I would like to mention, though, that
Charles Ka'upu and Papa Sylvester Kepelino, and George Naope,
speakers in the film, have since passed."
Filmmaker Jo Danieli continues: "I would like to quote Kumu
Rubellite Kawena Kinney Johnson, one "kupuna" speaking in the
film: "Spirit is not racial, it is universal", and that is indeed the
motto of the film. History can never be seen from one
perspective only, but it is a summary of all experiences and their
interpretations. We honor our ancestors -- all of them. The world
is only divided if we think so."
SCHEDULE FOR SHOWING ON 'OLELO TV
ALL ON NATV CHANNEL 53 (except for one showing)
Allow 2 hours and 11 minutes for each part
Native of Owhyhee: Part 1 of 3
10/25/11 Tue 1:00 pm to 3:11 pm
10/28/11 Fri 1:30 pm to 3:41 pm
11/4/11 Fri 12:30 pm to 2:41 pm
11/16/11 Wed 6:00 pm to 8:11 pm
Native of Owhyhee: Part 2 of 3
10/27/11 Thu FOCUS Channel 49 12 noon to 2:11 pm
11/1/11 Tue 2:30 pm to 4:41 pm
11/8/11 Tue 1:00 pm to 3:11 pm
11/17/11 Thu 6:00 pm to 8:11 pm
Native of Owhyhee: Part 3 of 3
10/27/11 Thu 7:00 pm to 9:11 pm
11/3/11 Thu 9:00 am to 11:11 am
11/10/11 Thu 9:00 am to 11:11 am
11/18/11 Fri 12:30 pm to 2:41 am
Those broadcasts can be viewed anywhere in the world during their broadcast times using the 'Olelo TV livestream for Channel 53 (no software downloads needed), thus providing another way for viewers to see the film in addition to the "on demand" link mentioned earlier. For livestream viewing during broadcasts on Channel 53 with no download needed (be patient for about 10 seconds while the broadcast hooks up and gets buffered), go to:
Speakers & Narrators in order of first appearance:
(Many appear on several occasions)
Rubellite Kawena Kinney Johnson
Serge Kahili King
Tanya M. Na’ehu
Charles K. Ka'upu (+)
Makahiwa N. Thompson
Caroline Bond Davis
Mary N. Zwiep
Papa Sylvester Kepelino (+)
George Naope (+)
Susan Pa'iniu Floyd
Kolina Akau Mokiao
Larry Noa Kawai
Tauari’i Nahalea Marama
Some webpages in order of relevance to the film "Native of
Quick biography of Opukahaia:
Major list of resources about Opukahaia, including full text of his
memoirs, and a collection of published accounts from the 19th
century describing Opukaha’ia’s influence on the American
Protestant missionary movement
Webpage by Ken Conklin:
Henry Opukaha'ia (Obookiah) -- Native Hawaiian Travels to New England in 1809, Converts to Christianity, and Persuades Yale Divinity Students to Come to Hawai'i as Missionaries in 1820
Webpage by Ken Conklin
The role of religion in Hawaiian history and sovereignty. How the ancient native Hawaiian religion is being revived to serve the political goal of establishing race-based sovereignty. How the native religion and Christian religion shaped culture and politics in the Kingdom of Hawaii. Compilation of selected webpages and books.
Webpage by Ken Conklin
Hawaii Statehood -- straightening out the history-twisters. A historical narrative defending the legitimacy of the revolution of 1893, the annexation of 1898, and the statehood vote of 1959.
Webpage by Ken Conklin
Historical Issues Related to Hawaiian Sovereignty -- Revolution (Overthrow of monarchy), Annexation, Statehood, Indigenous Status, Hawaiian Language Ban, Ceded Lands, Etc.
Personal note from Ken Conklin:
Shorter versions of the film were rejected in two different years by the Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF), probably because it portrays the missionaries in a positive light. This is the same HIFF which, in a recent year, gave its award for "best documentary" to a rabidly anti-American propaganda film "Noho Hewa" [Illegal Occupation] about the alleged U.S. "military invasion" of Hawaii in 1893 and continuing allegedly belligerent military occupation of Hawaii to this day. The "Native of Owhyhee" film is thus "politically incorrect" in today's atmosphere of sovereignty activism where America is blamed as an invader and occupier of Hawaii, the missionaries are portrayed as people who "came to do good and did very well indeed", and the ancient religion is being revived as a political weapon in an effort to push out European, American, and Asian religious and cultural influences.
The filmmaker was diligent to avoid having her film shaped by major Hawaiian institutions with sovereignty political agendas, such as OHA, Kamehameha Schools, and Pacific Islanders in Communication. It is a truly independent film by Jo Danieli, a woman of deep spirituality, who divides her time between Maui and her native Austria. Co-producer and post-production editor Robert C. Stone, of Stoneman Productions in Makawao Maui, has produced several other documentary films portraying native religions and cultures. Another film co-produced by Mr. Stone -- "When The Mountain Calls: Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan" -- will show on Maui the weekend of November 5, 2011 and on O'ahu and Kaua'i the weekend of November 11. That film's website is at
"Native of Owhyhee" is still seeking funding to be able to acquire all rights for
theatrical release and/or DVD release for educational purposes; a copy can be obtained in exchange for a fee; contact Ms. Danieli or Mr. Stone. The Bishop Museum holds a copy as well as the Hawaiian Historical Society.
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