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Mike Gordon’s write up of yesterday’s Five-0 seminar, with Jamm Aquino’s photos

February 28th, 2011 by

More coverage on yesterday’s seminar

Hawaii Five-0 Actor's Seminar

Hawaii Five-0 Actor's Seminar, 2/27/11. Photo: Jamm Aquino

Mike Gordon sat in on the seminar yesterday and reported:

It was the kind of afternoon that aspiring Hawaii actors normally only get to dream about: The stars of the CBS drama “Hawaii Five-0,” its directors, producers and casting gatekeepers all taking their questions about landing a part.

But there they were Sunday on the stage at Tenney Theatre. “Five-0” stars Alex O’Loughlin, Grace Park and Daniel Dae Kim, executive producers Peter Lenkov and Brad Turner, director Duane Clark and Rachel Sutton, the show’s casting agent.

Read his whole write up on the Honolulu Pulse website.

See Jamm Aquino’s photos on the Facebook page or at the Honolulu Pulse website (note you’ll have to scroll through individual photos on the Pulse site).

It looked like a full house at this invitation only event for actors, so a big mahalo to Mike Gordon and Jamm Aquino for giving us a report!

Local actor JT Rowland shares his experiences from the inaugural Hawaii Five-0 Actor’s Seminar

February 27th, 2011 by

JT Rowland gives us the inside scoop

Sunday’s Hawaii Five-0 Actor’s Seminar at Tenney Theater was so tightly wrapped, only the press and invitees were allowed in.  Present were executive producer Peter Lenkov, actors Alex O’Loughlin, Grace Park and Daniel Dae Kim, casting director Rachel Sutton, and producer/director/writer Duane Clark.

Local up and coming actor JT Rowland (twitter @JT_Rowland) was present at the seminar and soaked up some good advice and insight passed from the panel.  He shared some of what he learned on twitter, and also generously spent some time to answer my questions.

So you’re born and raised in Hawaii?
I am indeed a local actor. I was born in Honolulu but left the islands at a young age. I have been back now for almost a year.

What did they talk about at the seminar?
The seminar was a valuable experience for us actors. It gave us insight into what the casting agent as well as what the producers are looking for. Main points were on confidence, being prepared, be constantly training, know your lines or don’t show up to the set.

Their biggest pet peeve were actors that showed up to set and didn’t know their lines.

Another thing they wanted us all to know is that they take every opportunity to hire local talent. Peter Lenkov the exec producer was hurt by allegations that he paid LA actors preferential treatment over HI talent. He made it a point to say that 80% of their hires are local.

Any gems of wisdoms from the actors themselves?
Alex and Grace spent some time talking about their acting backgrounds. Alex being classically trained in Sydney. Grace went the route that that so many of us are taking. Finding local classes and plowing away at auditions.

Anyone’s advice struck you more than anything else?
Alex by far. You could tell he really wanted to impart us with wisdom. What I took away from him: Don’t act. Be present and “listen.”

Peter Lenkov did give me a better appreciation of the production side of the house. Lines, scenes, actors are all there to tell a story.  That’s what it boils down to at the end of the day.

Thanks for your time JT!

Other comments from JT pulled off the twitter timeline:

JT_Rowland Fun & I learned so much. Dan,Alex and Grace have such a presence, such charisma that I couldn’t help but be a little starstruck. #H50

JT_Rowland #H50 They all really seemed to care. The producers were more than a little hurt about the allegations that they hardly hire local talent.

JT_Rowland In reality, something like 80% of their hires are local. They gave candid and frank advice and accounts on the reality of what they look 4–

JT_Rowland – on the actors they hire. This portion of the seminar was worth 100 books on acting and the biz.

JT_Rowland It was also great to finally put a face to Rachel Sutton. She is the casting agent whom I’ve been trying to get acquainted with. #H50

JT_Rowland They covered so many things from the business side to the production and acting sides that there is no way I can do justice in tweets. #H50

JT_Rowland @Terrysagirl: Alex was classically trained in Sydney. Grace trained by attending various classes around Vancouver. #H50

JT_Rowland @Terrysagirl #H50 [Grace] described [learning acting]  as “[Guerilla] style.” Acting for film, auditioning, improv, movement classes. She still seeks out classes.

JT_Rowland @Ozbella Thing about Mr. O’Loughlin is that he appears to be an intense guy. But he’s actually pretty laid back. Awesome sense of humor. #H50

JT_Rowland @Ozbella [Alex] was constantly picking on Grace Park And Peter Lenkov. Jokes to the audience as well. Really cool guy. #H50

JT_Rowland @LisaLisa98 [The seminar] was strictly about the production and the craft.

JT_Rowland @LisaLisa98 …they didn’t dwell that deeply into the production side. What they did talk about pertained to the actor’s perspective on it

JT_Rowland @LisaLisa98 such as why the scene you were in ended up on the cutting room floor.

JT_Rowland @LisaLisa98 [edits are] Mostly due to time constraints. The show is actually about 47min in length. They always shoot over that and edit it down.

JT_Rowland @LisaLisa98 Peter Lenkov said they rarely edit due to someone’s performance because he can make a bad one work.

You can follow JT on twitter at @JT_Rowland.

A lucky fan recaps her night watching filming at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, more photos added to Facebook

February 26th, 2011 by
Hawaii Five-0 filming at the Hilton Hawaiian Village

Hawaii Five-0 filming at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, Photo: @eggfooyoung

I uploaded more photos from the Hilton Hawaiian Village on my Hawaii Five-o Undercover’s Facebook page in the Right Place, Right Time – Fan Photos 2011 album.

Undercover Special Agent Gail E. from New York shared her experience from Thursday night’s filming at the HHV:

I come to Oahu every February to celebrate my brithday and stay with close friends on the North Shore. I told them it would be cool if I got to see some filming of Hawaii Five-0. It was more of a joke than an expectation. I didn’t really expect anything of it.

My friend and I heard that Five-0 would be filming at the Hilton. We went over to see if we could get more info. We heard from someone that the main characters would be filming around 7ish at the Tropics Bar and Grill. There were already a few people standing around outside. We stood there and waited. They brought in the extras for the restaurant at about 6:00. The main characters came in later, walking by us and waving to the crowd. After a rehearsal run, they filmed a scene at the table. Chin, Kono, Danny, Steve (who was in a cast and had a bruised face), and Kamekona (who also was in a cast) came in. They had a band play for a little bit for the first scene. They reset the table to shoot another angle of the same scene. They filmed this about four times.

Earlier in the day I got a map of Oahu. I thought it would be cool to get it signed if I got to meet any of the actors from the show. In between filming I caught Daniel leaving. He signed my map and took a photo. I talked to a set hand after and asked if I could get Alex’s autograph since he was standing near makeup, waiting for next setup. He said it was possible. They finished filming, and I was near the makeup area with a few other people. When Alex walked out I said, hello and asked if it would be possible to get something signed cause I had to leave. He asked me where I was staying and where I was from originally. I told him I was visiting from New York and loved the show. He said he would have to give me a special signature then! He wished me a happy birthday too, and he was really nice! I got a quick photo with him and told him I loved Steve and rooted for him all the time. I asked if they were picked up yet for second season. He said not as of yet but was hopeful. I wished him luck. Also I got to say hi to Scott as he was leaving, got a photo of him and autograph too.

New BTS photoset, filming at the “Keola La’i” condo

February 25th, 2011 by

Submitted by an Undercover Special Agent, check out photos from today’s behind the scenes Hawaii Five-0 shooting at the Keola La’i condominium  right behind the CBS production headquarters in Honolulu.

Check out the photos on my Hawaii Five-o Undercover’s Facebook page in the Right Place, Right Time – Fan Photos 2011 album.

Stay tuned, more BTS photos from the Hilton coming soon!

More BTS from yesterday’s shoot courtesy of @Slash_Goggles

February 25th, 2011 by

Check out Slash Goggles’ blog for more Five-0 clips and photos (twitter @Slash_Goggles). 

New BTS clip from @AlohaBruce at the Hilton Hawaiian Village last night

February 25th, 2011 by

@AlohaBruce who runs the hawaii-aloha.com blog was with fellow bloggers @WebSouffle and @WendieJoy at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, Tropics Bar and Grill to catch the filming of the dinner scene with the Five-0 team and Kamekona!

New photoset of the Hawaii Five-0 cast with Neil Abercrombie

February 24th, 2011 by


Grace Park(Kono Kalakaua), Governor Neil Abercrombie, Alex O’Loughlin (Steve McGarrett), First Lady Nancy Caraway, Scott Caan (Danny “Danno” Williams), Daniel Dae Kim (Chin Ho Kelly), Larisa Oleynik (Jenna Kaye).

Photo: Ed Morita, posted on Neil Abercrombie’s Flickr.
Also available on Hawaii Five-0 Undercover’s Facebook page, Media Photo album.

“Local businesses get good exposure on Hawaii Five-O” from Hawaii News Now

February 22nd, 2011 by

Local businesses get good exposure on Hawaii Five-O
Source:  Hawaii News Now (with video)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011 9:45 PM EST

By Steve Uyehara

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – It was the start of another episode.  Danno and Chin Ho Kelly were leaning over their car.  Danno’s mouth was still full, but he still found room to remark, “It’s should be illegal it’s so good.  What the hell is it?”  Chin Ho replied, “Coco puffs.  Liliha Bakery sells 7,000 of these a day.”

It seems every week another local business gets a plug like this on Hawaii Five-0.  Take the Battleship Missouri Memorial for instance.  It served as the backdrop when Steve McGarett met the governor for the first time in the pilot episode.  It’s also in the credits at the opening of every show.  And it also had its own episode.  An ex-Navy Seal took a group of visitors hostage.

Since then, tourists have been pouring in.  Last December the Missouri saw 25% more visitors than any other December on record.  And just last month they saw 30,000 paid customers.

Michael Carr, the President and COO of the Battleship Missouri Memorial says, “We had a record year in 2010, I think driven by a number of things, the publicity that we got from drydock, the fact that tourism has improved, but I think the Five-0 Effect certainly had a positive impact on the later part of the year.”

Carr says the Missouri never paid for the publicity.  In fact, Five-0 paid them a site fee and even let the Memorial authorities look over the script before shooting.  “The alleged suspect was supposed to come on covered in blood,” remarks Carr.  “We’re like, we don’t let people through the gate covered in blood.  So they actually had to change it.”

Five-0 fans know the character Kamekona as the face of Waiola Shave Ice.  But in real life, it’s Jerry Lee who’s owned the shop for 30-plus years.  He still doesn’t know why the producers chose to feature his business.  “It could be just the name ‘Waiola,’” he says.  “It’s Hawaiian, versus some other Japanese name.”

He calculates an additional 20% in shave ice sales since his business’ name appeared in the pilot.  And he says T-shirt sales are up 30%.  He even has a shirt with Kamekona’s likeness on it.  He has a tough time keeping that one in stock.

Still, there’s just one more thing he wants from Kamekona.  “I wanna meet badly,” he says.  “I want to invite him here, have a shave ice, take a picture and we can hang it on the wall here and have the words that say ‘founders,’ you know?  Because I always tell people he’s the owner, and I’m the brother.”

Kona Brewing Co. has seen a HUGE boost from it’s appearance in the show.  Steve McGarett is always drinking their beer.  In fact, the show’s alpha male has been heard asking for the company’s signature “Longboard” brew in several episodes.  How did that help?  Well in the 4th quarter of last year they saw a 60% increase in beer sales.

“It’s probably added 10,000 barrels of beer to the sales over the 4th quarter and into the beginning of the 1st quarter,” says Mattson Davis, President of Kona Brewing.  “It’s just been, that’s 10,000 on top of the growth we were already experiencing.”

But for all the products featured on the show, the biggest product has got to be Hawaii itself.

I asked Steve Spalding, a tourist from Michigan if seeing the sunny beaches and blue skies on TV during the winter made him want to come here.  He replied, “Yes!  I’ve been dying to come here.  Been watching this show since it started and I’ve been dying to come.”

And when you think about it, the show is still in its first season.  Who knows how much stronger the Five-0 Effect will get.

Copyright Hawaii News Now 2011. All rights reserved.

“Hollywood meets Hawaii at the old Honolulu Advertiser building” from Hawaii News Now

February 22nd, 2011 by

Hollywood meets Hawaii at the old Honolulu Advertiser building
Source: Hawaii News Now (with video)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011 9:22 PM EST

Inside the old Advertiser is a room used as medical examiner's morgue on Hawaii Five-O.
Inside the old Advertiser is a room used as medical examiner’s morgue on Hawaii Five-O.

By Teri Okita 

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – A trivia question for you: what iconic Honolulu building houses a police department, a tsunami center, a medical examiner’s morgue, and even a brothel? Hmmmm. Stumped?

It’s the old Honolulu Advertiser building on Kapiolani Boulevard in downtown, and these days, it’s the center of operations for the hit show, Hawaii Five-0.

Steve McGarrett can call the three-and-a-half acres of prime real estate in Honolulu “home”. Well, sort of.

“We’re standing just outside Steve McGarrett’s house,” says co-executive producer and director, Brad Turner. “The ocean’s just over there,” he points to a big blue screen. “There’s a backdrop now for the ocean.”

Turner shows us how they’ve transformed the old newspaper property into a Hollywood soundstage. “It’s kind of movie magic at work again.”

McGarrett’s house – and Danno’s apartment – are nothing more than four walls suspended from the ceiling. There are no foundations. But the inside is decorated as any home would be, and it looks very realistic. Both sets are located within one the newspaper’s old storage warehouses. “The idea is: control the sound. Control the look. Control the light.” It’s easier and cheaper to build the sets than shoot on location over a long period of time.

The process for building the sets actually starts in the main building. The art department conceptualizes the sets according to the way a script is written. Then, the designs head down to the construction mill located, for now, in what was the Advertiser’s paper warehouse.

Turner says, “We’re moving the mill into where the printing presses used to be, and we’re going to build HQ in here”

HQ is Five-0′s headquarters – currently shot in the back of the Old Federal building in downtown, but next season, the main sets will all be at the old Advertiser. A good sign. “As we build more sets, yeah, it does indicate that we’re going to be here for a long time. It’s something we’re committing to, yes,” says Turner.

When they’re not creating sets, they’re converting old rooms on the compound. In 1929, the Beaux-arts style building boasted one of the most beautiful front entrances in all of Honolulu – with terra cotta detailing and a grand, quarried style staircase. Newspaper employees sat at their desks in the big, front room. Today, actors sit at the desks, in what is now, a fake police squad room.

They’ve used every nook and cranny of this old newspaper building to shoot. 95% of the property is being utilized in some way. The upstairs hallway was a brothel in one episode. On the second floor, the tsunami warning center sits ready for action, if needed, and downstairs, old newspaper offices have become the medical examiner’s morgue. Even the parking lot is used to shoot. Production supervisor, Angie Laprete, wants to see more kama’aina working around the property.

“One of my missions is to get as many local crews as we can on the show,” says Laprete.”And what’s nice about it is we have about 80-85% locals”

The Gannett corporation eventually plans to sell or redevelop this property – reportedly assessed at 16-and-a-half million dollars. For now, though, this iconic building – which is not on the list of historic buildings – will continue to sit at the busy intersection where Hollywood meets Hawaii.

Copyright 2011 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

Talking Story with Mike Buck on AM 830 KHVH Honolulu Talk Radio (Hawaii Five-0 podcast Feb 22)

February 22nd, 2011 by

On the radio

Here’s audio of my Hawaii Five-0 talk story session with Mike Buck yesterday on AM 830 KHVH.  We talked about the storyline, local businesses, Lani of Hobbietat, twitter and the #H50 tweetups, my writing process, Dane Cook, and a lot of Scott Caan.

Officer 808 on the Mike Buck Show, February 22, 2011 for “Loa Aloha” (14:54)