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An award-winning documentary about Megumi Yokota, who was abducted from Niigata by North Korean agents at age 13 in 1977, will be released in theaters next month starting in Hollywood, the Washington-based production company Safari Media said.

“Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story” will begin its theatrical run at the ArcLight Cinemas from Aug. 18 to 24.

“This is great not just for the film but for the families whom this story is based on,” said Chris Sheridan, who, with his wife, Patty Kim, directed and produced the film. “Hopefully, the Hollywood screenings will bring even more attention to the families and abduction issue itself.”

The Hollywood opening will be part of the International Documentary Association’s “DocuWeek” program that helps some of the best documentary films to qualify for an Academy Award entry.

According to the office of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, a documentary film must be played in a commercial movie theater in either Los Angeles or New York for at least seven consecutive days to be eligible for award consideration for the 2006 awards year.

In addition, a feature documentary like “Abduction” must have at least eight additional commercial public exhibitions for two or more consecutive days in four or more states.

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