Uncategorized Governor gets personal in new video By Derrick DePledge July 6, 2014 Mahalo for supporting Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Enjoy this free story! STAR-ADVERTISER<strong>Neil Read more Mahalo for reading the Honolulu Star-Advertiser! You're reading a premium story. Read the full story with our Print & Digital Subscription. Subscribe Now Read this story for free: Watch an ad or complete a survey Log In Already a subscriber? Log in now to continue reading this story. Activate Digital Account Print subscriber but without online access? Activate your Digital Account now. A new campaign video offers a personal look at Gov. Neil Abercrombie, from his first impression of Hawaii when he arrived as a university teaching assistant in 1959 to his fondness for Japanese cinema and Hawaiian music to his emotional bond with Agnes "Aggie" Kalaniho‘okaha Cope, his hanai mother. "Bucket of Stars," a 15-minute video by filmmaker Edgy Lee, features testimonials about the governor from his wife, Nancie Caraway, and several of his friends and political allies, including Honolulu City Councilwoman Ann Kobayashi and former Gov. John Waihee. Abercrombie has been a public figure in the islands since the 1970s and, as governor for the past four years, the most intensely watched politician in the state. But his advisers said voters may not know the governor’s personal side. "The film reveals a seldom seen or understood part of Neil Abercrombie — his personal stories, values and life experiences that shape the decisions he makes as governor of Hawaii," William Kaneko, Abercrombie’s campaign manager, said in an email. "Edgy Lee captures the governor’s love, devotion and commitment to Hawaii and its people that you can’t portray in a 30 second TV commercial." The video will debut Tuesday evening on K5. An adviser to state Sen. David Ige, speaking on background, said the video is meant to "recast him in a kinder and gentler light," adding, "obviously, over the last four years he has aggravated people with his tone and antagonized everyone from legislators to the AARP to a whole bunch of other people." Ige, Abercrombie’s primary opponent, does not have the campaign money to do more than radio advertisements and YouTube videos. Political candidates often use longer-form videos to engage with voters beyond campaign commercials or through the filter of the news media. In Hawaii, most memorably, Gov. John Burns used the 30-minute "Catch A Wave" film to show his human side during a difficult Democratic primary challenge from Lt. Gov. Thomas Gill in 1970. Former Gov. Linda Lingle launched her own 24-hour digital cable channel during her unsuccessful Republican campaign for U.S. Senate in 2012. The title of the Abercrombie video comes from the governor’s description of his first night in Manoa, "it was as if the gods had thrown a bucket of stars across the sky." The governor, who is from Buffalo, N.Y., remembers possibly being the "only haole boy in the place" watching Japanese adventure films at the old Toyo Theatre in Chinatown. "It might seem corny to some people now, but those films were about values. What was honor all about? How was one an honorable person?" he said. Abercrombie also recalls his introduction to Honouliuli, the internment camp for Japanese-Americans during World War II, which he believes needs to be preserved. "Our diversity has to define us, not divide us," he said, adding, "That’s the message of Hawaii. That’s the message of Honouliuli, that our diversity should be our glory. It should not be our pain." The video does not delve much into public policy, other than Kobayashi recalling how Abercrombie fought for seniors after the collapse of Manoa Finance and Waihee describing how the governor released money to end teacher furloughs on classroom instruction days and restore social services right after he was inaugurated. Waihee also describes how Abercrombie got a Native Hawaiian federal recognition bill passed three times by the U.S. House. The bill has stalled in the Senate. Abercrombie celebrates the Hawaiian cultural renaissance of music and hula in the 1970s, and his own early work at the Legislature on Hawaiian issues, "not the revival, but the revitalization." In the most moving portion of the video, Abercrombie chokes up when talking about Aunty Aggie Cope, his hanai mother. "My mom came to visit, and Aunty Aggie, whom I’d met because of her work on the Waianae Coast with culture and arts for the kids, she met my mother and told my mother that she," his voice breaking, "that she wanted to hanai me."