Just in time for Memorial Day, Step and Repeat LA sponsors the premiere of 'Return to the Philippines: The Leon Cooper Story'
On Monday, May 25th, the red carpet will roll out to welcome countless high-profile celebrity guests, as well as members of the United States military, to the exclusive screening of a new documentary by filmmaker Steven C. Barber.
'Return to the Philippines' tells the true story of Leon Cooper, a WWII Navy craft officer, who landed assault troops on six Japanese island strongholds during the span of his career. To this day, Mr. Cooper feels a debt to the thousands of US soldiers who died during battles in Europe and in the Pacific. In fact, 80,000 fallen soldiers lie in unmarked graves and are listed as "missing-in-action", or MIA.
Leon recognizes that there are thousands of families who are still affected by a lack of closure, which can result when a loved one is declared MIA. Cooper's focus is on spurring increased efforts to recover - and identify - the men who died in WWII, and whose remains were never recovered. Now at the age of 94, Mr. Coopers risks his health and safety to go to the Philippines, where 70 years earlier in 1942 he participated in their liberation. He was amazed to learn that both the JPAC representative in Manila and the Ambassador refused to meet him.
Undeterred, Mr. Cooper and his documentary film crew conducted a series of interviews of Filipino Scouts and guerrillas. Through these interviews, Leon discovered not only the essential role each individual played by providing information critical to the success of General MacArthur in his return, but also of the high price the Filipino people paid. More than one million Filipino lives were lost in remaining loyal to the US and resisting the Japanese invasion and occupation.
To help make this impacting film premiere an event to remember, Step and Repeat LA provided a red carpet setup and a beautiful backdrop to showcase each guest as he or she arrives. Celebrities expected to attend include John Savage, Clint Eastwood and Ed Harris.