‘Dinosaur crazy’

LIHUE — Isaiah Aguirre of California said the Jurassic series is great and he couldn’t wait to see the latest movie, “Jurassic World.”

Aguirre, staying with his grandmother Mary, was among the early arrivals at noon Friday at the Kukui Grove Center to wait for the doors to open on the first showing of the Steve Spielberg-produced film.

“I saw the first one,” Aguirre said. “This is a great series and I can’t wait to see this latest one.”

Beatrice Moniz, an employee with Kukui Grove Cinema, said if she didn’t have to work, she would be in line as well.

“I told you there was going to be a long line,” she said. “This movie is going to be busy.”

Moniz said there were six showings scheduled Friday, the opening night, and anticipated the larger crowds for the evening show.

“Even the mayor is coming,” said Art Umezu, the former film commissioner, now named as the Sports and Cultural Arts Tourism Coordinator/Sister Cities.

Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr., was invited to a private screening in Washington, D.C., when he was part of the Hawaii on the Hill.

“He got to see the film before we did, but he wanted to be part of this Kauai excitement,” Umezu said.

Randy Francisco, new film commissioner, was busy lining up toy dinosaurs which were being distributed to the younger movie-goers, pausing in his duties to thank patrons for waiting in the sun for an opportunity to view the movie which had certain segments filmed on Kauai.

“This is one of my first tasks in my new position,” Francisco said. “I think I’m beginning to feel like a film commissioner.”

Wray Jones of Hanapepe had his family in tow, including son Patrick who was excited after receiving a dinosaur from Francisco.

“It’s dinosaur-crazy,” Wray said. “We got the original film and the kids have been watching it, working up the excitement for this one.”

Sam Kamae was hired for parts in “Tropic Thunder” and “Pirates of the Caribbean.” He did not get any parts for the filming of “Jurassic World,” but came with his friends to share in the excitement of the first showing.

Umezu said having Jurassic World being filmed here is worth a couple of million dollars in marketing, in addition to the hiring of locals to help in the production of the film.

“This is money we don’t have,” Umezu said. “We need to keep working at this because everyone else has picked up on this and wants films done in their backyard.”

Joe Meboe said he had chores to do, but his wife Helen “pushed me out the door to go see the movie.”

“I was supposed to be doing errands,” Meboe said. “But she literally pushed me out the door, telling me to ‘go see the movie.’ This is what happens in 50 years of marriage — true bliss.”


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