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Short Films by Sansei Directors to Be Shown at Union Church

A scene from George Takaki’s “Say Yes to Your Heart.”

Sansei Legacy Film Afternoon will be presented on Sunday, Jan. 27, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at Union Church of Los Angeles, 401 E. Third St. (at San Pedro Street) in Little Tokyo.

The following shorts by Sansei filmmakers will be screened:

• “The Arts District Without Artists” by Steve Nagano (“Speak Out for Justice”). Forced removal. Evictions. Reminiscent of the past, artists were forced to move, “relocate,” after years of living and working in the Joannes Building at 800 Traction Ave., one of the first designated artists-in-residence buildings in Los Angeles. The new owners, a subsidiary of an international bank, began the evictions immediately.

• “Holiday Bowl” by Mitchell Matsumura. A gathering place for a community and a generation, where all peoples came together in Los Angeles’ Crenshaw District, Holiday Bowl was a refuge for the stresses of life. The community celebrated its opening in 1958 and was in disbelief when it closed in 2000. Many local Japanese American families have ties to the bowling alley and its coffee shop.

• “Jeff Imada: Breaking Barriers by Design” by Cory Shiozaki (“The Manzanar Fishing Club”). Imada was a pre-med student at UCLA before an opportunity to work on a movie as an extra created a totally different career choice. A road not often taken by Japanese Americans, the lure of working in the entertainment industry on screen set the stage for an entirely different occupation — stuntman. An official selection of the Seattle Asian American Film Festival.

• “Say Yes to Your Heart” by George Takaki. A 79-year-old man wants to join a rock-climbing gym but his granddaughter tries to dissuade him. They agree to a one-month trial. Disaster strikes when Grandpa comes down with shingles. After a six-month layoff and still feeling weak, Grandpa returns to the gym to either quit or persevere.

Q&A with the filmmakers to follow. Free but donation appreciated. For more information, email

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