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Filmmaker looking to highlight the best of Lodi

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Ricardo Kanakari

Posted: Saturday, November 17, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 2:24 pm, Wed Dec 5, 2012.

A new film project will give viewers an inside look at the businesses, people and places that make Lodi special.

Filmmaker Ricardo Kanakari started on this project a few months ago as a way to give back to the foundation that helped his mother through her final days. Kanakari's mother passed away at Lodi Memorial Hospital this year. The enthusiastic, beret-wearing Kanakari hopes the film will endorse the Lodi Memorial Hospital Foundation and encourage support.

The film will be made up of short clips highlighting businesses and characters around Lodi, all of which have paid for the opportunity to participate. Each donor has the right to use their own film clip on their websites and promotional materials, and Kanakari will combine them all on DVD in the final product. Each donor also get several copies of the film to sell or distribute.

But Kanakari isn't quite finished. He is looking for more Lodi businesses, organizations and people to feature in his film.

"I've gotten 62 sponsors in 75 days," said Kanakari. "We've filmed about 90 percent of it. But we need the last little bit to put us over the top."

The goal is to get all the sponsors filmed by Thanksgiving. Then Kanakari and videographer Robert Calzada will edit the footage in the coming months. The final DVD should be available by mid-February.

This is Kanakari's first time directing and producing a documentary-style film. His background is in wine, and he has worked in Monterey, Napa, Sonoma and Lodi making wine and promoting wineries for 30 years. Kanakari runs Wine Nation TV, a daily web show on YouTube offering insight on wine, wineries and the culture of wine.

While the Lodi film will showcase the city's number one industry through wineries and winmakers, the goal is to give viewers a broad look at life in Lodi.

"I love Lodi. The people here are great," said Kanakari.

Contact reporter Sara Jane Pohlman at sarap@lodinews.com

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