FirstLight season shines with 47 Globe nods

Fifteen years later – Maui Film Festival is still making Maui a merrier place.

FirstLight: Academy Screenings on Maui, a holiday season celebration of cinema, gifts isle moviegoers with Golden Globe darlings, Hawaii premieres, special screenings and encores. The 15th annual FirstLight, screened at Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s Castle Theater, kicked off with a new FirstNight event, a trio of encore screenings, in November; opened with a screening Dec. 11; and continues through Jan. 5.

Barry Rivers, Maui Film Festival director and FirstLight curator, said this season’s FirstLight films recently earned a total of 47 Golden Globes nominations.

FirstLight’s 2013 films, which include 20 Hawaii premieres and 10 special screenings, feature Kate Winslet, Josh Brolin, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Judi Dench and Amy Adams, among others. Also, official submissions to the 86th Academy Awards in the Best Foreign Language Film category from France, Italy, Belgium and Chile are included.

FirstLight film tickets are $15 per film. Buy a VIP FastPass at $48 and get access to any four FirstLight movies, valid through January; FastPasses can be shared with family and friends. A Gold Cinema Circle Membership for $500 allows access to all FirstLight films, and reserves exclusive front-row seats of Castle Theater’s mezzanine section. Complimentary admission is offered to most major film industry guild members and a guest (details on the Maui Film Festival website). Children 12 and younger are free to G- and PG-rated films.

Tickets and VIP FastPasses can be purchased by calling 242-7469 or by visiting the MACC box office during hours of operation and one hour prior to all film screenings. Visit or

– Kehaulani Cerizo