The Locals’ Take
“The way Alex goes underwater to cry, the dialog, the mood of the scenes, the way it’s not too bright, it captures the beauty and greenness. They kept everything I liked about Hawaii.
I read multiple versions of the script. When Alex set up scenes, he’d ask, ‘Does it look right?’ I thought he was indulging me, but when I said, ‘I don’t think that extra works,’ the next thing I knew, he was out!
I swear [Burke and Payne] know more people here than I do.”
–Kaui Hart Hemmings, author
“ ‘Over the Rainbow’ was in movies three times but not even in a Hawaii movie. I’m so happy that Dad’s music was picked.”
–Cyril Pahinui, musician
“When we were shooting above Kipu Kai, George Clooney said ‘Kamehameha’ without the ‘h’s,’ and the crew, we all laughed. He turned and asked, ‘What?’ So we told him, and then he said it right.
When we get to be a part of a project like this, that shows Hawaii and our people as we really are, it’s so satisfying.”
–Keola Jones, B camera dolly grip
“The difference between scouting with Alex and with someone else, is that he’ll say, find me a place where the locals would go and a man like Matt King would have a boat. You take him there and he says, let me sit here for a while.
If you do something that matters in your life, this would be the one project that would make a difference.”
–Renee Confair Sensano, production supervisor
“We drove all over and I told [George Clooney] about the history of the ranch, the challenges we faced as a family trying to preserve it. He didn’t ask questions. I get the impression he was more kinda soaking it all in.”
–John Morgan, president, Kualoa Ranch
“I was lighting the candles when George Clooney arrived. He said ‘Hi there!’ and I nearly fell off the chair. I ran into the kitchen for his lei and went out and gave it to him with a hug and a kiss. It was great! After they had both completely eaten all their salmon, George Parra said, ‘I usually don’t eat salmon,’ and George Clooney said, ‘I never eat salmon!’”
–Carri Morgan, Punahou’s Luke Center for Public Service