With more than 40 years of film industry experience, Jeannette Paulson Hereniko is best known as the founding director of the Hawaii International Film Festival, a position she held from 1981 to 1996. She is also the founding director of the Palm Springs International Film Festival, which she started in 1990 with the late Mayor Sonny Bono. She’s been a jury member for International Film Festivals such as Berlin, Singapore, Hanoi, Mumbai, and Manila, and was a founding board member of NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asia Pacific Cinema) as well as the Founder/Director of NETPAC/USA from 1992 until 2015. In 2009 she was awarded the Korean Cinema Award from the Busan International Film Festival that is given to individuals who have made outstanding contributions in promoting Korean cinema to the world film community. She produced, wrote and directed several documentaries before producing Pear ta ma ‘on maf (The Land Has Eyes) in 2004, the first narrative feature film ever nominated from Fiji for consideration for “best foreign language film.” The film had its world premiere in Sundance and won Best feature film at Toronto’s ImagineNATIVE Film & Media Arts Festival She served on the international Nominations Council for the Asia Pacific Screen Awards and was awarded the MPA APSA Academy Film Fund in 2013 for script development of a narrative feature film set in the Marshall Islands.
Currently she is President and Producer of Te Maka Productions, Inc. a film and theatre production company and is a film curator for Alexander Street, a company that distributes films to over 7000 universities around the world. She is also a writer and performer of one woman shows, currently on tour with When Strangers Meet, which is based on her film adventures.
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