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Baseball Behind Barbed Wire (Short Flm) & The Last Passenger (Ft. Flm)-CIFF

January 24 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Wednesday, January 24

Baseball Behind Barbed Wire (Short Flm) & The Last Passenger (Ft. Flm)-CIFF

Screening of the Short Film, “Baseball Behind Barbed Wire” and the Feature Film “The Last Passenger”

By Chandler International Film Festival

Date and time: Wednesday, January 24 · 7:40 – 9:27pm MST

Location: LOOK Dine-In Cinemas Chandler, 1 West Chandler Boulevard Chandler, AZ 85225

Refund Policy
Refunds up to 30 days before event
Eventbrite’s fee is nonrefundable.

About this event: 1 hour 47 minutes


Baseball Behind Barbed Wire

Directed by Yuriko Gamo Romer

Starring: Kerry Yo Nakagawa, Tetsuo Furukawa, Howard Kenso Zenimura, Bill Staples, Jr.

32 minutes, United States

Premiere Status: World Premiere

Baseball Behind Barbed Wire tells the story of the WWII incarceration of Japanese Americans, through the uncommon yet popular lens of baseball, America’s national pastime.

There is great irony in the popularity of the All-American Sport of baseball. Japanese Americans incarcerees had their citizenship and civil rights taken away and were forcibly confined from 1942-45. Playing baseball was a chance to assert their citizenship and affirm their loyalty as Americans, even as camp guards in towers pointed their rifles inward and the barbed wire kept them confined.

The spine of the film will be told from the Gila River Camp in Arizona, brought to life by Howard Zenimura and Tets Furukawa, its primary baseball players. Howard’s father and the coach, Kenichi Zenimura, had already made a name for himself in the world of baseball, having even played with Babe Ruth. Together they built a real baseball diamond complete with stands and dugouts from pilfered scrap lumber and fence posts.

The All-American pastime became a favorite for many incarcerees at all ten camps stretching from California to Wyoming to Arkansas. Some of the camps had two or three fields and some had as many as thirty teams.

In 1945 the internees were finally free to leave, but there was little hope that they could go “home.” Piecing together new lives, Japanese Americans rebuilt, reeducated, and regained confidence. The concepts of “gaman” (endurance) and “gambaru” (to persevere and keep working hard) are core to the Japanese soul. If there was one thread that ran through this unforgiving history, it was baseball.


January 24
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
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LOOK Dine-In Cinemas Chandler
LOOK Dine-In Cinemas Chandler 1 West Chandler Boulevard
Chandler, AZ 85225
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