$51,960
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
363
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, November 4 2016 7:04 PM UTC +00:00
Oliver IkeBy Oliver Ike
First created
Oliver IkeBy Oliver Ike
First created
$51,960
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
363
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, November 4 2016 7:04 PM UTC +00:00

About

We are producing Edgar Award winning author Naomi Hirahara’s Summer of the Big Bachi. Her books have sold over 100,000 copies and have been translated into Japanese, Korean and French.

Summer of the Big Bachi
Summer of the Big Bachi
  • Named one of “The Ten Best Mysteries and Thrillers of 2004” by Chicago Tribune
  • A Publishers Weekly “Best Books of 2004” Pick
  • “Hirahara uses a wealth of fascinating historic and social details . . . to create an original and exciting mystery. [A} poignant story of loyalty and betrayal, full of real people who could be ourselves.” --Chicago Tribune

The character of MAS ARAI

Synopsis: Mas Arai is many things—a nuclear bomb survivor, gardener, expecting father, compulsive gambler and borderline alcoholic. “Amateur detective" will join the list when a mysterious man from Japan threatens to resurface long-buried secrets from Mas' past. Call it what you will—bad karma, divine punishment, what goes around comes around, BACHI—but the past isn’t finished with Mas Arai. Not just yet.

Isamu Hirahara
Isamu Hirahara

The character of Mas Arai was inspired by author Naomi Hirahara's late father, a gardener and Hiroshima survivor, and many other men and women of that generation.

THE BIG BACHI

The likelihood of mainstream Hollywood developing a project with Asian Americans in front of and behind the camera is zero, which is why THE BIG BACHI depends on your support.

We need $100,000 to start this movie. This might sound like a lot of money, but in the film world it's not. This money will go to paying actors, locations, equipment, food, etc.—basically everything it takes to get a movie made.

One of the strengths of the project is the team behind it. We have a talented group of filmmakers with a strong track record and experience. You can be confident that once we've established funding, we'll make a quality independent film with minimal resources.

*We are definitely on the right track as the script has made it to the second round of the prestigious Sundance Screenwriters Lab competition!

THE TEAM

DIRECTOR DEREK SHIMODA produced the feature film, In My Life, as well as the acclaimed documentary, Secret Asian Man, an official selection of the Sundance Film Festival. He wrote, produced and directed the film, Autonomous Soul, winner of a Visionary Award at the Pan African Film Festival. Over the past several years, Derek has worked on non-fiction series for several cable networks including, The History Channel, The Travel Channel and A&E. His debut feature-length documentary, The Killing of the Chinese Cookie, was a Best Documentary winner at the Asian Film Festival of Dallas. His most recent project, June Bride: Redemption of a Yakuza, is a feature documentary about Tatsuya Shindo, a high-ranking Japanese ex-mobster-turned-preacher.  

“The character of Mas Arai from The Big Bachi is a conglomeration of people familiar to our tiny production team, each with their own distinct voice and story,” says director Derek Shimoda. “We’re all, somehow, linked by Mas - three of our fathers were or are still gardeners, two survived the atomic bomb, and so on. This emotional connection encourages us to tell our story in our own words, which is why we’re so eager to collaborate on The Big Bachi.”

AUTHOR NAOMI HIRAHARA is a novelist and social historian based in Los Angeles. A former editor of The Rafu Shimpo newspaper, Naomi has written nonfiction books, including a biography on businessman and philanthropist George Aratani, the history of Japanese American gardeners, and the lost Japanese American community on Terminal Island. In addition to her successful Mas Arai book series, she has written, 1001 Cranes (2008), Murder on Bamboo Lane (2014) and Grave on Grand Avenue (2015). She received her bachelor’s degree in international relations from Stanford University and spent a year at the Inter-University Center for Advanced Japanese Studies in Tokyo.

PRODUCER OLIVER IKE is an experienced film industry veteran with over seven years experience in distribution, sales, programming and production. Ike served as Associate Producer on the feature film, EMOTICON and has released numerous award-winning films as a distributor including: In the Family, Seoul Searching, Man From Reno, Patang and many more. Ike currently runs the independent film distribution company, First Pond Entertainment.

SCREENWRITER MARK TASAKA graduated from the USC School of Cinematic Arts with a Critical Studies degree. During his time at the school, Mark met his frequent collaborator Derek Shimoda and they’ve been working together ever since. Mark has worked on a variety of documentaries, films, and television shows since graduating. A veteran of the television industry for over a decade, Mark is currently working as a supervising producer on a hit reality show. 

PRODUCER KOJI STEVEN SAKAI has written five feature films that have been produced, Haunted Highway (2006), The People I’ve Slept With (2009), Monster & Me (2013), #1 Serial Killer (2013), and Dying to Kill (2015). He also served as a producer on The People I’ve Slept With, #1 Serial Killer, Dying to Kill and Take Notes (2015). His screenplay, Romeo, Juliet, & Rosaline, was optioned by Amazon Studios. Koji’s debut novel, Romeo & Juliet Vs. Zombies, was released by Luthando Coeur in February of 2015 and his graphic novel, 442, will be released by Stela in 2016.   

Thank you for your time and consideration! Please don't hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Risks and challenges

Independent movies are difficult to pull off. We'd like to go into production as soon as possible after we are fully funded and fulfill all our rewards. However, keep in mind that sometimes it is out of our hands.

Understanding that, we do promise to get the film completed and to fulfill all our reward obligations as soon as humanly possible.

The other potential obstacle of making a movie is giving people a chance to see it. Have no fear, we are going into this film with the intent of making sure everyone will have an opportunity to see it at a film festival in a movie theater or in the comfort of their own homes. We have a team experienced in self-distribution and are confident we can get the film out there should we not receive a fair distribution offer.

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    GARDEN HOSE

    Receive a PDF version of the shooting script the day the movie is released!

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    ANGLED ROOT CUTTER

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    TRIM SICKLE

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    TRIPLE-CLAW WEEDER

    Get a copy of the book, Summer of the Big Bachi, signed by the author, Naomi Hirahara!

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    FOLDING SAW

    Get an exclusive sit-down with producer, screenwriter and author, Koji Sakai in Los Angeles! He will do a one-on-one with you either in-person or via the internet to answer all of your questions about the screenwriting or writing process. Travel and accommodations not included.

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    LAWN EDGER

    Lunch for one with Edgar award-winning author Naomi Hirahara at her favorite restaurant in Little Tokyo! Pick her brain on her writing techniques or just listen to her hilarious stories. Travel and accommodations are not included.

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    LEAF CATCHER

    Take home Mas' trusty pruner! Get one of the pruners we use in the film signed by the cast and crew!

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    ROTARY LAWN MOWER

    Set visit for 2! Come hang out with the cast and crew for the day! Travel and accommodations not included.

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    GRAFTING KNIFE

    Be an extra! Here's your chance to shine with a walk-on role in our film. Travel and accommodations not included.

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    PRUNING SHEARS

    Be a featured extra! Here's your chance to shine with a featured background role in our film. Travel and accommodations not included.

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    GENUINE JAPANESE GARDENER EXPERIENCE

    Our film revolves around a Japanese gardener in 1960s Los Angeles. The sad fact is that Japanese gardeners rarely still exist, especially ones with decades of experience. With this rewards, a genuine Japanese gardener will come to your home and manicure your lawn. This unique experience will be documented by our production team and will include a Japanese bento box for you and the gardener to talk things over afterwards. (Good for the US only)

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    GARDEN AXE

    Show off your acting chops by having a line in the film! Here's your first step on the way to becoming a bona fide movie star! Travel and accommodations not included.

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    BONSAI PRUNER

    Associate Producer. You will get an associate producer credit in the film to show how integral you were to making this film happen!

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Funding period

- (30 days)