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Friday, July 9, 2010

Looking for America on Saipan

THE spotlight is focused on a bar known as the Statue of Liberty on the dot of an island called Saipan, a melting pot of people with various nationalities.

The Statue of Liberty (which is the former Hamilton’s Bar in Gualo Rai) is the regular meeting place of people with different backgrounds brought together by a common goal. They are all looking for “America” on Saipan.

The Statue of Liberty bar is a mute witness to these people’s quest for fulfillment.

“The State of Liberty: Looking for America” is a film shot entirely on Saipan in 2005 by Dan Shor, an award-winning television/film actor, director, writer and teacher at Northern Marianas College who used to live on Saipan, and Ben Salas, a Hawaii-born actor and producer whose family moved to the island in 1985.

They envisioned their film as Saipan’s gift to the world of entertainment.

The characters are Japanese, Chinese, Chamorro, Carolinian, Bangladeshi, Filipino, Russian, and statesiders.

The film’s five interconnected story lines take the viewer to all the scenic spots and captures the beauty and local color of the island.

The story is centered on a Chinese woman searching for her half-brother named America.

Starring in the film are Saipan residents, some of whom have already left the island, including Elena Alexandrova, Tony Angelo, Heather Calderwood, Joseph Calimlim, Myla Capilitan, Li Ying Guo, Sean Maycock, Tanya Oscar Nobuko, Kyoko Reber, Ben Salas, Angel Santos, Dan Shor, Raby Syed, Joe Taijeron, Jason Tarkong, Jing Yang and Bo Zancanella.

A copy of the DVD is available as part of the Passion Profit Company’s SaipanLiving series for $19.95. Buy your DVD at http://www.amazon.com/Looking-America-Saipan-Story-Shor/dp/B003KK5ARK.

(Article first published HERE)

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