A Personal Matter: Gordon Hirabayashi vs. the United States (film)


Title A Personal Matter: Gordon Hirabayashi vs. the United States
Date 1992
Director John de Graaf
Writer John de Graaf; William Mandis
Narrator Scott Simon
Starring Roger Shimizu (interviewee); Shigeko Uno (interviewee); Edward Hirabayashi (interviewee); Gordon Hirabayashi; William Kubick (interviewee); Helen Strickland (interviewee); Arthur Barnett (interviewee); Peter Irons (interviewee); James Hirabayashi (interviewee); Jan Johnson; W. Michael Gillette (interviewee); Rodney Kawakami (interviewee); Camden Hall (interviewee)
Music Michael Bade
Cinematography Diana Wilmar; Norman Bonney
Editing John de Graaf
Studio The Constitution Project
Distributor Center for Asian American Media
Runtime 28 minutes
IMDB A Personal Matter: Gordon Hirabayashi vs. the United States

Documentary film on Gordon Hirabayashi and his legal challenge to the World War II-era measures against Japanese Americans during the war and the revival of that challenge forty years later. John de Graaf directed the 28-minute documentary, which tells his story in a largely chronological manner, ending with the 1980s coram nobis case verdict. In addition to Hirabayashi's own words and contemporary footage of him visiting such key locales as the Federal Court House in Seattle, where he was first tried; the King County Jail, where he was incarcerated; and his alma mater, Auburn High School, the filmmakers tell the story through interviews with two of his brothers, friends, and some of his lawyers (including Arthur Barnett, his friend and lawyer in the 1940s cases). A Personal Matter aired nationally on Public Broadcasting Service stations in 1992. Among the funders of the film are the National Commission on the Bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution, the Rose E. Tucker Charitable Trust, the Collins Foundation, the Oregon Law Foundation, and the Jackson Foundation. de Graaf had produced in earlier film on the removal and incarceration of Japanese Americans from Bainbridge Island, Visible Target, in 1985.

Authored by Brian Niiya

For More Information

A Personal Matter on the Center for Asian American Media website. http://caamedia.org/buy-caam-films/film/?i=159.