Archive for February, 2010

And now, what about that 'Magnum P.I.' revival?

February 20th, 2010

If “Hawaii Five-O” is set for a relaunch on TV this year, can “Magnum P.I.” be far behind with an overdue makeover?
Think about it: Tom Selleck was a hottie when he played private eye Thomas Magnum, just as Jack Lord’s Steve McGarrett cop lorded over viewers in their respective times.
“Five-O” was a hit from 1968 to 1980, “Magnum” followed from 1980 to 1988.
Both were CBS shows, filmed entirely on location here. “Magnum” wouldn’t have existed if not preceded by “Five-O.”
Both have had buzz about transiting to the big screenin recent years, but so far such plans have been like the tide; they’ve come and they’ve gone, bubbling then fizzling over the years.
But “Five-O” redux becomes a reality when a new CBS pilot is shot here in March, with Alex O’Loughlin of "Moonlight" and "Three Rivers" stepping into McGarrett’s world. Daniel Dae Kim of “Lost” also will play Chin Ho Kelly; other classic roles for the next-generation show likely will be announced over the next few weeks and the only other mentionable, as of this week, is Taryn Manning as McGarrett’s sister Mary Ann, a character who originally appeared in two early “Five-O” episodes, so her emergence is historically legit. Or not.
So who would you like to see reinvent the Selleck/Magnum part?
Interestingly, George Clooney has been a “maybe” for both the movie and TV versions, though at last report, Matthew McConaughey was a possibility for the movie “Magnum.” Dunno about McConaughey, but I’d say that Clooney’s large screen star power would not likely include an option in episodic television, but who knows, he might ultimately consider the film “Magnum.” For now, let’s just say it’s “up in the air” for Clooney.
I could imagine someone from the popular “Lost” ensemble to don a Magnum mustache and get behind a Ferrari steering wheel to portray an ex-Navy Seals guy-turned-private investigator, fighting crime in paradise. Like, Josh Holloway, aka Sawyer? He’s got the charisma; he puts up a good fight; he already lives here; his star is still rising.
Or Matthew Fox, the Jack of “Lost?” He’s got it down pat, rescuing people; he remains primarily a TV staple despite some film work and conceivably could turn his neurosurgeon nuances to an investigative itinerary, his father issues into Vietnam matters.
Or, think about this one for a sec: Michael Emerson, who is the award-winning Ben of “Lost,” as a left field McGarrett? A good guy/bad guy actor, certainly intriguing, with potential layers yet to surface. Did het say he couldn’t imagine returning to the ways of New York, trading in his life in paradise, once “Lost” is pau? Well, here's an op; he would be a different kind of a McGarrett, both likeable but extremely tough cop; maybe a little creepy, even?
And gotta ask, would Magnum still don aloha shirts? He should! And the fashion industry here would enjoy the casual Aloha Friday look to market — and be forever grateful. In comparison, McGarrett always donned suits and looked like a tourist in Hawai’i; one element to soften and change in a reboot.
And why wouldn’t Magnum continue to wheel around O’ahu in a Ferrari?
Other casting could be equally tricky.
Who would play Higgins, with a Brit clip, who runs the Robin’s Nest estate where Magnum lives in a guest house? Would the same Waimanalo house be cast as the hideaway again?
And what about Magnum’s sidekick pair, T.C., the helicopter tour guide, and Rick, the club manager? Could be star-making opportunities, if unknowns were tapped.
Or maybe they should just leave the “Magnum” franchise untouched — at least for now.
Unlike “Five-O,” where most the principal actors have died — with the exception of James MacArthur, who played Danny Williams (you know, “Book ‘em, Danno”) — the "Magnum" players perhaps are awaiting a call for a cameo.
Perhaps “Magnum” should be placed on the back burner. Like, wait and see first if “Five-O” flourishes or fizzles.
What do you think?

'Five-O' revisited: Should the franchise be tampered with?

February 19th, 2010

A new “Hawaii Five-O” pilot will soon begin filming here, as CBS strives to reboot, recycle and reinvent one of television’s iconic shows.
But should the “Five’O” franchise be tampered with? Is Jack Lord, the original Steve McGarrett, rolling in his grave? Does lightning strike again?
It’s not the first time that the network is attempting to reignite the magic that was “Five-O.” Remember the earlier debacle with Gary Busey? Recall the recent plan that would have a McGarrett son carry on dad’s crimefighting mission? Remember all the buzz of a big-screen reincarnation with bigger names?
Is nothing sacred?
On the one hand, no one can replicate the stilted charm of Lord, who put style and starch in his McGarrett character, and played it with precise control for 12 seasons, from 1968 to 1980, then the longest-running police drama (since eclipsed by “Law & Order”). The show was ground breaking in its time — the first ever to shoot entirely in the Islands with daily rushes sent back to the West Coast (hey, this was, before the digital age) — and was a boon to Island tourism thanks to images of the mythical state police unit battling crime and evil-doers in a tropical paradise. The vistas were truly marvelous particularly during Mainland winter storms.
Imagine what good a sun-baked environment on the tube would do to spur visitors here now, in the wake of the recent whiteout on the East Coast and the lingering down economy.
Which brings up casting. Alex O’Loughlin (pronounced oh-lock-lin) an Australian, has been tapped to take on the Lord/McGarrett challenge, and those are big shoes to fill. He has to curb his Down Under accent; he’s kind of a young hunk, which makes him marketable; and he’s an apparent darling of the network, who had him starring in two failed CBS shows: the vampire outing, “Moonlight,” where O'Loughlin played Mick St. John for 16 episodes in 2008, and the medical drama, “Three Rivers,” where he portrayed Dr. Andy Yablonski for a mere 10 episodes earlier this season. So will three be his lucky charm?
For years, there has been talk about a movie version of “Five-O,” with names like George Clooney, Harrison Ford, Michael Douglas and Alec Baldwin heading the rumor mills. More recently, there was that “Five-O” TV junior-grade update plan, where a son of McGarrett named Chris would the head of the elite police force on the big screen.
The 2010 revival heading this way already is blessed with the presence of Daniel Dae Kim, who was the first signed to the show, in the role of state police officer Chin Ho Kelly. He’s the first “Lost” star to find momentum after the ABC show’s closure this season.
Behind the scenes, there are savvy show magicians, with a pedigree of growing success, to tweak “Five-O:” “Fringe” writer-producers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, who also were the screenwriters of “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” and “Star Trek,” and Peter Lenkov, a producer of “CSI: New York.”
Movies continue to scope previous TV hits for renewed life on TV, and vice versa, but failures outnumber hits. The losers: “Dragnet,” “Starsky and Hutch,” “Miami Vice,” “I Spy,” “Land of the Lost,” “The Dukes of Hazzard,” “The Addams Famiy,” “X-Files,” and “Bewitched.” Among the triumphs: “Mission: Impossible,” “The Fugitive,” “Star Trek,” “Charlie’s Angels.”
“The A-Team” arrives this summer with Liam Neeson, Jessica Biel and Bradley Cooper, and in a twisteroo, “The Exorcist” will be revived this year with original director William Friedkin downsizing the 1973 horror thriller for a TV mini-series. So the beat goes on and on and on.
Let’s hope this “Hawaii Five-O” captures the spirit and flavor of the old, and inspires a new generation of viewers who will become potential visitors to the 50th state. That was a bonus mission of the original. The new one should retain the solid formula of yesteryear — “Five-O” always had solid storytelling based on mythical but logical good-vs.-evil battles — without excessive violence or expletives. Just check the frequent syndicated airings or those season DVD collections; they're classic.


• Maintain Morton Stevens’ “Hawaii Five-O” theme song in the opening and closing credits.
• Film entirely in the Islands, taking advantage of the landscape and people.
• Include geographical blunders — like showing McGarrett driving along Kalakaua Avenue and saying he’s heading for the airport, or mix up mauka and makai. (We adore these blantant miscues; it’s been part of the show’s charm).
• Continue the stable of secondary characters: Danny, Kono, Ben Kokua, the Governor.
• Preserve the “Book ‘em, Danno” classic line, from McGarrett to Danny Williams.


• Casting locals only as heavies.
• Abolishing recurring roles like Duke and Truck.
• Relocating the “Five-O” headquarters from ‘Iolani Palace — the only monarchial palace with historical roots in the U.S. — to a modern-day edifice.
• Neglecting familiar Island and Mainland actors — it’s comforting to see guest faces we know.
• Throwing in nonsensical Hawaiian names, like Kalanikanakaolemauka, into the dialogue.
— Wayne Harada, Special to The Advertiser

Posted in Entertainment | Comments Off on 'Five-O' revisited: Should the franchise be tampered with?

Datebook doings: fashion, dinner, music galore

February 16th, 2010

Here’s another rundown of festivities you might want to log in your datebooks:

Benefit: A Tea PAHty with champagne, fashions

A Safari Champagne Tea PAHty & Children’s Fashion Show, from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. April 11 at the Hawaii Prince Hotel, is a family-friendly fundraiser where children of those attending will provide the fashion statement.
A safari-themed program, evoking the exotic settings for the Honolulu Theatre for Youth production, “Just So Stories,” will be chaired by Audra Stevenson and Aubrey Hawk, as an HTY fundraiser. Attendees are invited to don costumes as “the hunter,” embracing khaki couture, or “the hunted,” with garb in animal prints like zebras or tigers.
There be a kid-aimed silent auction of items and adventures, African-flavored entertainment, and an English Safari High Tea, plus champagne cocktails.
The finale will be a runway show featuring children in theme-appropriate garb from such clothiers as BECCA Beach Kahala, The Blue Buddha, Crazy Shirts, Hawaiian Moon, Jams World, Kahala Sportswear, Roxy/Quiksilver and Therapy boutique, among others.
Tickets: $1,750 for Zanzibar Sponsor tables, enabling six models to participate in the fashion show; $1,250 Botswana Sponsor tables, allowing three models; and $175 individual Congo seats, with each pair offering one model.
Reservations: Carolyn Kishi at HTY, 839-9885, ext. 711, by March 19.

Nostalgia: Oldies but Goodies dinner-dance
“Oldies but Goodies With Sid Hamada,” an evening of dining, dancing, contests and prizes, is set from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Feb. 26 at 3660 on the Rise in Kaimuki.
The event honors the Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce’s current president, Sidney Hamada, and will feature guest hosts and a deejay.
Tickets: $60, at 949-5531, by Feb.19.

Music: Slack, steel and harp guitar at HPR
Chris Yeaton, Hawaiian slack key guitarist, and Adam Werner, who plays steel string and harp guitar, will concertize at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27 at Hawaii Public Radio’s Atherton Performing Arts Studio.
Island-born Yeaton has been mentored by Keola Beamer and John Keawe and mixes traditional and contemporary fingerstyles.
Werner’s acoustic style has earned him a Grammy nomination in 2008 for Best New Age album.
Tickets: $25 general, $20 HPR members, $15 students with ID. Call 955-8821.

Music: Hamajang lands an Atherton concert
Hamajang, the house band at Hawaii Public Radio’s “Aloha Shorts” radio show tapings, will bask in the spotlight when it makes its Atherton Performing Arts Studio debut at 7:30 p.m. March 13 (a new date)..
Hamajang performs on a variety of acoustic instruments, from washtub bass and steel guitar, to accordion, spoons and kazoo. Its hodgepodge songlist includeso down-home blues, swing, country, folk, hapa-haole Hawaiian and other "roots" styles tapping such sources as Irving Berlin and Poi Dog Pondering.
The band includes Derek Ferrar, vocals, 'ukulele and percussion;
Charley Meyers, vocals, guitar, steel guitar; Yash Wichmann-Walczak, washtub
bass, accordion; and Mark Scrugari, bass and percussion.
Tickets: $25 general, $20 HPR members, and $15 students with ID. Reservations:l 955-8821.

Music: Haugens’ Peace on Earth freebie tomorrow
Keith & Carmen Haugen’s Peace On Earth Concert, at 6 p.m. tomorrow (Feb. 17) at the Kapi’olani Park Bandstand, is the fourth in an annual series that upholds the possibility of global peace in our lifetime.
Bring a mat on which to sit, a blanket for warmth, and pack your snacks and beverages. A variety of acts will perform a spectrum of music.
Scheduled: The Thursday Night Band, led by Stanton K. Haugen, with vocalist Jamie Hope; The Tradewinds; singer Gerald Ting; pianist Ron Miyashiro; The Carmen Haugen Quartet, with Carmen on vocals, uke and hula, Miyashiro on keyboards, Keith Haugen on vocals and guitar, and Frank Uehara on pakini; plus Jenny Yoshimura and Kau’ionalani Mead, winners of the Al Waterson & You singing contest.
Al Waterson will be master of ceremonies.
Admission is free.

Posted in Entertainment | Comments Off on Datebook doings: fashion, dinner, music galore

Show bits: DeLima and Augie to tour; blues bands for Valentine's

February 14th, 2010

Comedy: Frank DeLima, Augie T to launch comedy tour

The Portuguese Kings of Comedy Tour, starring Frank DeLima and Augie T, will celebrate family-friendly Island-style comedy laughter, beginning with a concert March 5 at the historic Palace Theatre in Hilo.
Other gigs will unfold throughout the next few months.
Bud Light, Gouvea’s Sausage, Midas, Leonard’s Baker and KMA Productions are presenting DeLima and Augie in their first tour together — a long time coming.
Separately, DeLima and Augie have been entertaining Islanders with their different brand of comedy.
DeLima is known for his mix of stand-up and musical parodies, often outrageously costumed as he created and enacted personalities real (Imelda Marcos) and mythic (Foo Ling Yu), punctuated with punchlines with ethnic orientation. His recordings, over the past three decades, have garnered 12 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards. DeLima also has toured Island schools, coupled with annual Sudent Enrichment Program that assists grade schoolers in their transition to middle school, with a message of a drug-free lifestyle to succeed.
Augie, a deejay by trade, also is a comedy veteran, easily the hottest local funnyman of his generation specializing in impromptu, quick-witted gags commonly with roots in his real life. For the past six years, Augie has staged a variety of shows in venues large (the 7,000-seat Blasidell Arena) and small (community and high school gyms) to raise funds for his “Speak the Dream Foundation,” a non-profit organization formed to help graduating seniors pursue a higher-education degree.
Tickets: $20, available at the Palace Theatre, 38 Haili St. At the door: $25.
Information: 934-7010.
The second stop on the Portuguese Kings of Comedy tour will be March 19 at the Sheraton Poipu on Kaua’i. Details for this, and future shows, will be announced soon.

Music: Blues into the night, for $5

Billed as the Last Oahu Blues Bash, a five-hour mini-marathon of blues featuring five bands unfolds at 4 p.m. today (Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day) at Anna Bannana’s in Moili’ili. Admission is $5.
Parking, also $5, will be available at the Japanese Cultural Center next door, if street parking is not available.
Kevin’s Two Boots will provide Cajun grinds from its truck outside Anna’s.

Posted in Entertainment | Comments Off on Show bits: DeLima and Augie to tour; blues bands for Valentine's

IZ going viral with the launch of his own Website

February 12th, 2010

IZ is facing a viral future, with the launch of a new website.
At, there’s old news and new new, focusing on the phenom that is Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, thanks to his “Over the Rainbow” sensation. The site also shares the riches of the debut of the IZ Rainbow ‘Ohana; when you join, you you share IZ insights and become part of a growing community of IZraelites.
A recent posting features actress Angelina Jolie as a child, in a tribute to her late mother, with — of course — the strains of Bruddah Iz’s “Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World” providing the veil of sentiment and gentleness.
The site is the new official headquarters of IZ, and the footage from Jolie and her brother Jamie (their father is actor Jon Voight), is a precise sample of how the IZ legacy has touched souls. Here, Jolie and Jamie pay homage to their late mom, Marcheline Bertrand who is seen frolicking and hula-ing near undisclosed shores and cavorting in a hotel room (appears to be the Ilikai)...because Bertrand loved the Islands. Everyone’s wearing lei, enjoying the visit, and the homey bit of remembrance was originally posted on then surfaced on YouTube, eliciting a query from New York magazine about how the IZ tune emerged as the choice to accompany the tribute.
And so goes the legacy.
“It’s been fun,” said Jon de Mello, CEO of The Mountain Apple Company and the guru behind IZ’s post-death popularity across the globe, about working on the IZ destination. De Mello, who was Kamakawiwo’ole’s producer since 1993, was a mentor, fan, friend, confidante, soft shoulder and a lifelong mentor, is overseeing the launch of as a place where “Facing Future” and other IZ moments and music live anew, a mere keystroke away from fans hither and yon.
“It’s like watching a flower grow,” said the inventive de Mello, who keeps repositioning his client way beyond the confines of a CD artist. “IZ’s personality was so funny, so fast, so witty. Some people are still finding out now that he died. All the stuff I have on IZ, collected over the years, I’ll post.”
You see, de Mello’s style suits IZ’s unconventional and impromptu nature. Whenever IZ was in the studio, de Mello would simply roll the digital tape and let him sing, talk, share jokes, sermonize, hum, moan, whatever.
So in his possession are hours of chatter and sound bites, morsels de Mello has started to categorize and shape into fodder for the website — many funny, some inspiring, all characteristically and genuinely IZ — which de Mello expects to post in the weeks and months ahead.
Quietly launched last Dec. 9, the site is now is going full throttle.
So de Mello is on IZ watch, reacting somewhat like a proud pop: “It’s like a kid; you feed it every day, you go through the burps, you change the diapers. The kid won’t be ready for college for the first few weeks, so we’re watching it grow, feeding it, and now we’re ready to get the word out nationally and internationally,” de Mello said.
Hits have come from 48 countries including a few unimaginable locales, like South America and Russia, and Eastern Europe, where “Rainbow” continues to be a periodic choice to push a product or service. “The average hit (on the site) is six or seven minutes,” he said. “This is going around the planet; viral marketing works, and we’re making babies out there.”
And why not?
“Facing Future” remains the top selling Hawaiian music album in the world, becoming the first Island CD certified gold by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) in 2002, then deemed platinum for sales of more than 1 million in 2005. It now is approaching double-platinum levels, which means it likely will surpass 2 million in a year.
The disc’s popularity also has prompted a book, Dan Kois’ “Facing Future,” part of a 33 1/3 series (see sidebar review) that probes select CD titles for mini book-length-type liner notes.
“We almost got a Super Bowl commercial,” said de Mello of a planned spot with an IZ pop, “but they (the clients) changed their mind.”
All fun and fuel for IZ as faces his viral future.


Dan Kois’ “Facing Future” book (Continuum, $10.95), is a tidy companion to the Israel Kamakawiwo’le legacy because it scopes the best-selling Hawai’i-produced CD ever, retelling the phenom that is Bruddah Iz, rehashing all the milestones and missteps taken by the late Hawaiian Sup’pa Man.
The book is part of a 33 1/3 series — the numbers referring to long-playing discs of the distant past — and magnifies achievements and marvels from an array of artists ranging from ABBA to The Byrds, from Bob Dylan to The Beatles. And now, IZ.
It’s a thorough, precise recap, with interviews from folks who actually knew and worked with IZ, reconstructing moments and manners of Bruddah Iz, and others in the music community who admired him from afar.
Jon de Mello, IZ’s mentor who turns over licensing revenues to the singer’s family, is mischaracterized – dubbed a hack, in fact — in a chapter on Bruddahood, a mini-thesis on who is truly in with IZ and that laid-back lifestyle, who isn’t. Without de Mello, there would be no “Over the Rainbow” that the world has embraced.
— Wayne Harada | Special to The Advertiser

Recent Posts

Recent Comments