By Jano Tantongco
When Huntington High School senior Charlie Ehrman was a young boy, he found a Panasonic camcorder that he used to capture the world around him. Meanwhile, he was also beginning to write, creating comic books that hinted at his burgeoning future as a talented filmmaker.
“I always had an underlying passion to tell stories,” Ehrman said.
Today, Ehrman has come a long way from his camcorder days, currently wielding a Nikon DSLR camera he uses to capture his short films.
He’s notably produced the short film that celebrated the life of Eli Mollineaux, the Huntington student who battled Pearson syndrome, a mitochondrial disease, and died last year.
In March, three of Ehrman’s recent films were chosen to be screened at the Scout Film Festival, an event that honors young filmmakers from all over the world for their remarkable short films.
His films were three out of 130 films chosen from 987 submissions from more than 67 countries.
His videography teacher, who spearheads the schools video arts program called his achievements impressive.
“I am unbelievably proud of Charlie and his achievements,” Swan said. “His hard work and dedication is shown in all his videos. Charlie reminds me every day why I am proud to be a video teacher.”
Among the three films included “Carpe Diem,” a story about a boy who loses his father to suicide, which Ehrman produced in his junior year. He called it a turning point in his filmmaking career, one that would help him promote the message of suicide prevention.
Ehrman also produced “The Grappler,” which revolved around a wrestler training to earn a state title. The filmmaker himself was a varsity wrestler for Huntington up until his junior year.
The third film is “El Salvador: An Edgar Rivas Story,” inspired by the real-life story of Rivas, a Huntington sophomore who left El Salvador to escape the harrowing world of gang violence.
The films will screen at the festival in Stowe, Vermont, June 9-11.
Also this summer, Ehrman will be attending a two-week conservatory program at the Manhattan Film Institute to further refine his skills in videography, directing and lighting, all while working with a production team. And, in the fall, he will attend film school in California.
Ehrman is currently working on a short public service announcement to bring awareness to Long Island’s opioid crisis, which will screen in schools across Suffolk County.