Chris Tashima and Susan Fukuda as Chiune and Yukiko Sugihara in “Visas and Virtue” (1997).

CULVER CITY — “Visas and Virtue,” winner of the Academy Award for Live Action Short Film, has been invited to screen at the 9th Asian World Film Festival (AWFF), running Nov. 8-17 at the Culver Theater, 9500 Culver Blvd. in Culver City.

A special screening at AWFF is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 15, at 1 p.m. and will

celebrate the 25th anniversary of the year “Visas and Virtue” took home a statuette at the 70th Academy Awards (1998). Director and star Chris Tashima, along with other cast and crew members, will be in attendance for a Q&A following the film.

“Thrilled to screen that little gem!” wrote AWFF Executive Director Georges N. Chamchoum.

Produced by Chris Donahue, the 26-minute drama was adapted from a play written by Tim Toyama and recounts the true World War II story of Japan’s vice consul to Lithuania, Chiune Sugihara, who risked his career — and safety — to write transit visas, defying direct orders from Tokyo. His humanitarian act allowed thousands of Jews to escape Nazi Europe.

“I’m really grateful for the opportunity to screen ‘Visas and Virtue’ at AWFF and to share Sugihara’s inspiring story with a new generation of viewers,” said Tashima.

The AWFF presentation will premiere a new 4K digital restoration of the film, done by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2022.

“I’m looking forward to seeing our film in a movie theater, and with an audience,” Tashima said. “This will be the first time I’ve seen our restored print on the big screen. It’s exciting.

“I’m especially happy that my three other cast members, Susan Fukuda, Diana Georger and Lawrence Craig Harris, will be joining me for our Q&A. The four of us were in the original play onstage, before the film, back in 1995 — where it all began. The cast reunion is going to be great.”

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Chris Tashima, Lawrence Craig, Diana Georger and Susan Fukuda in a scene from “Visas and Virtue.”

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