“Director's Biography”

Mr. Maeda’s last project titled: “Music Man of Manzanar” was in the qualifying round of the Academy Awards for Best Short Documentary in 2008. It screened @ the Laemmle Theatre and many universities and schools. It also screened in Tokyo and Paris to a very appreciative audience who knew little or nothing about the concentration camps that Japanese of American heritage were placed in during World War II.

To purchase a DVD go to www.j-townpictures.com

Mr. Maeda attended UCLA film school where he was one of the founding members of Ethno Communications; the first third world film group in the nation. It’s resolve was to make films about their people and their communities.

Mr. Maeda has been a member I.A.T.S.E. since 1971. He was one of the first Asian Americans to be accepted into the International Cinematographer’s Guild.

Then he went to Hollywood and worked on such films as ‘Bound For Glory’ – the Woody Guthrie story - that won an Academy Award for Best Cinematography 1976.

‘For Pete’s Sake’ starring Barbra Streisand. by ‘Bullet’ fame director Peter Yates. Lazlo Kovacs (Easy Rider) D/P.

‘Uncommon Valor’ about the Vietnam war starring Gene Hackman. And countless other films and T.V. shows in the following decades.

His love and passion for filmmaking was always prefaced by the old saying, “But what I really want to do is Direct!” And so he segued into his first play titled: The Kendo Master. A semi-autobiographical play about a young rebellious Japanese-American kid and his father who was a kendo teacher. It was a critically acclaimed one-act play that was a preview of film to come.

‘The Man Who Faced Himself’ - A Dentsu production of the story of Naomi Uemura the legendary solo adventurer who scaled Mt. Everest, sailed down the Amazon and climbed Mt. McKinley.

‘Buddha-Heads’ aka ‘Savage Boys’ on DVD. The feature film saga of a Japanese family in L.A. that was written and directed by Mr. Maeda. It played theatrically @ the Laemmle Theatres and was sold world wide on DVD. A review by Kevin Thomas of the L.A. Times applauded it’s unique story of Japanese-American gangsters search for identity. 2001.

'Grand Opening of SKA Dojo' - The documentary about the building, architecture and celebration of the new central dojo in the Montecito mountains. Shihan. Tsutomu Ohshima’s realization of having a karate dojo in the mountains overlooking the sea come to fruition.
Fiftieth Anniversary of Shotokan Karate of America. The celebration and practice of over 1,000 karateka world wide as they gather for this momentous event at the Ohshima Shotokan Dojo.

'Music Man of Manzanar' - The story of Lou Frizzell, a drama and music teacher who volunteers in 1943 to go to the Manzanar Relocation Camp He wanted to bring hope and joy to the high school kids who were behind barbed wire fences. Mr. Maeda’s older brother Arnold is featured in the film. He was the President of the Class of 1944.