The Roots of ʻUlu
The history of ʻulu (breadfruit) and present day efforts to utilize this iconic tree for cultural preservation and food sustainability practices
- Matt Yamashita
- John Antonelli
- Full-Length Film
- Food, Sustainability
- Featured In
- 2015 Hawaii International Film Festival - Pacific Showcase
- 25 in 25
- 30 Minutes
The Roots of ‘Ulu will transport the viewer from the Polynesian voyaging canoes that brought ‘ulu from Tahiti to Hawai‘i, up through the present day efforts of native practitioners, medical specialists and agricultural experts who have a shared vision of the ‘ulu tree playing an important role in cultural preservation, health restoration and food sustainability for Hawai‘i’s future.
The Roots of ‘Ulu is a recipient of R&D, Production, and Completion funding from PIC's Media Fund.
JOHN ANTONELLI - Producer
John Antonelli has been producing award-winning programs for theatrical release, public television, premium cable and broadcast for over 30 years. His titles include Sam Cooke: Crossing Over, Jack Kerouac: King of the Beats, Unfair Game: The Politics of Poaching, Sea Change, and Angle of Inspiration. For the past twelve years, Antonelli has been producing The New Environmentalists. The half hour series narrated by Robert Redford has been broadcast on PBS and on The Sundance Channel’s environmental programming thread The Green. These environmental documentaries have also screened at film festivals worldwide including Barcelona, New Zealand, Palermo, Lisbon, Seoul, Prague, New Delhi, Telluride, Hawaiʻi, Vermont, and at the United Nations Film Festival at Stanford Univeresity. Sam Cooke: Crossing Over premiered on PBS' American Masters, which garnered an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Nonfiction Series. Jack Kerouac: King of the Beats premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and is currently streaming on Netflix and iTunes.
MATT YAMASHITA - Co-Producer/Director of Photography
Matt Yamashita was born and raised on the island of Molokai, where he continues to live today. He earned a BFA in Film Production from Chapman University and has over 14 years of freelance production experience in Hawai‘i. As a producer, director of photography and editor, Matt has worked on numerous productions that have received statewide and national broadcast. The nature of his work reflects a deep commitment to telling the stories of Hawai‘i through a local lens.
For many years I have searched for a film project that would allow me to explore Hawaiian culture through the eyes of Native Hawaiians. When I was first introduced to the rich history of the ‘ulu tree and its countless uses, I felt certain that I had found the right subject to delve into. As an outsider, I have been deeply moved to see the emotional and practical ties that Hawaiians seem to have to ‘ulu as food and as an iconic form that seems to reach to a spiritual level. I am excited to learn more about how this bond came about and to do my part in telling this intriguing story to the world.
- John Antonelli
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