Select news media got a sneak peek early last month in Los Angeles of Columbia Pictures' "Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within," the Honolulu-based film with a computer-generated cast.
Final Fantasy preview
The journalists saw nearly 20 minutes of the highly anticipated film, which has taken nearly four years to create.
It is based on the "Final Fantasy" series of interactive video games from Japanese software giant Square Co.
The film, directed by Hironobu Sakaguchi, is slated for general release July 11.
"Final Fantasy's" storyline revolves around Ross (voiced by Ming Na) in the year 2065.
Earth's humans are under siege by alien creatures, and Ross attempts to save the planet with the help of her mentor Dr. Sid (Donald Sutherland) and Capt. Gary Edwards (Alec Baldwin).
Guest of honor: Oliver Altherr, former executive chef of the Kahala Mandarin Oriental, now chief operations officer for Mövenpick Gastronomy International in Germany, is back for a one-night guest-chef stint, 6 p.m. Friday at Bali by the Sea in the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
His four-course meal includes Kiawe-Grilled Goose Liver Terrine, Pan-Seared King Salmon on Kalua Pig Roulade and Grilled Beef Tenderloin and Kona Lobster. Cost is $59. Call 941-2254.
"A Recipe for Mother's Day": Sheraton-Waikiki chefs Garret Fujieda and Dwight Yoshioka demonstrate the making of a three-course meal, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Saturday. The menu: Seared Onaga with Braised Fennel, Broiled Marinated Lamb Chops with Kaffir Lime and Coconut Glaze, Roasted Pineapple Loin with Banana Bread Toast. Cost is $50, including samples. Call 931-8408.
Kakaako Kitchen: Chef Russell Siu has designed a coffee blend under the Royal Kona Coffee Chef Line. All Island Blend -- 30 percent Hawaiian coffees combined with Arabica beans from Central and South America -- is available at a new Kakaako Kitchen Koffee Kart and by the bag. Call 596-7488.
Starbucks Coffee: The coffee shop chain has introduced a Hawaii Coffees line featuring a pure Kona, Kona blend, Maui and Kauai coffees. The chain also is selling mugs and other accessories designed by local artists, as well as two compact discs of Hawaiian music.
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