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  • Writer's pictureHawai'i House Democrats

Rep. Cullen Co-Hosts Meeting on Diversifying Hawaiʻi's Economy Through Film and Creative Media

Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – In an effort to grow Hawaiʻi’s already diverse economy, Representative Ty J.K. Cullen alongside Senator Michelle Kidani and Chris Lee, Founder and Director of the Academy for Creative Media, held an informational Zoom meeting for lawmakers about investing into Hawaiʻi as a production hub for films. 

“With the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen just how economically dependent our state is on tourism, and how quickly that foundation can disappear,” said Representative Ty J.K. Cullen (District 39 – Royal Kunia, Village Park, Waipahu, Makakilo, West Loch). “I am optimistic and excited about the prospect of Hawaiʻi becoming a centerpiece for film production; there’s a lot of opportunity for us to move the film industry and our communities forward.” 

With the new creative media facilities opened at University of Hawaiʻi at West Oʻahu, the meeting highlighted the potential to create a pipeline of local talent through early college learning opportunities, develop sustainable, high-paying local jobs that grow Hawaiʻi’s film industry, and expand West O‘ahu’s potential as a production hub for the State.

The informational Zoom meeting featured Dan Lin, a prominent Hollywood producer, who recently relocated to Hawaiʻi and recognizes the prospects for the state to become a leader in the film business. Lin is known for producing blockbusters such as the LEGO movies, Disney’s ALADDIN, and the horror movies IT and IT 2. Through his Rideback production company and creative campus, Lin is also known for his collaborative, community-based approach to supporting new creative voices from diverse backgrounds, including through writer development programs such as the Rideback TV Incubator.


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