Thursday, May 23, 2024

CoSA Junior Ethan Wahamaki Wins 2024 SoCal Film Award

Awards season is nearly over with the 96th Annual Academy Awards occurring this Sunday, March 10, but a lucky Coronado School of the Arts (CoSA) student got to bask in the thrill of a win.

Wahamaki in the CoSA studio.

Ethan Wahamaki is a Coronado High School junior who recently won the 2024 SoCal Film Award in the Youth Movie category for his film “Vampire Sandwich.” Wahamaki has been enrolled in the CoSA Film conservatory for three years now.

“Vampire Sandwich” was originally a project for CoSA’s Annual Horror Nights exhibition, which occurs in October. The film follows a chef on his eerie journey in making a dish suitable for his blood-thirsty client. It’s a fun short film with excellent lighting and editing choices, but what sparked this idea in Wahamaki’s brain?

He answers, “I was eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and that is genuinely how the idea came to me. I acted in [the film], as well as directed it and shot it. I had friends there to help me, but it was pretty much just me in front of a camera acting as a chef the whole time. It wasn’t pretty stressful until my battery started to die!”

Wahamaki submitted his film one day when he was bored and saw an opportunity to get recognition for it.

“I forgot I won, I didn’t see the email until a few days later, but I’m very excited that I won,” says Wahamaki.

As the winner of the SoCal Film Awards, he will get featured in an LA newspaper and gets the stamp of honor placed on the film.

Now, as the excitement settles down, Wahamaki is back to making more films. “I think CoSA has trained me to be a better filmmaker by providing me with opportunities, freedom, equipment, and working with people who are interested in filmmaking so it’s a great opportunity. I’m currently working on film stuff, basically anything to get my name out there and taking any opportunities I can by hitting the record button.”

He shares, “I’m definitely interested in going into film professionally. I enjoy it very much and it’s something I’m super interested in as a career. I love cinematography, but I really love every aspect of film and making them.”

A big congratulations is in order for this budding director!

Maria Laguna
Maria Laguna
Maria Laguna is student at Coronado High School and has lived in San Diego her whole life. She is an officer to numerous clubs on campus, including: Feminist Club, Creative Writing Club, and Activism Book Club. Maria is also very involved with community service. Her passions include fashion, reading, writing, and travel. She shows her love of literature by being a Coronado Public Library volunteer in her free time and working on her own novella. She has always loved doing activities that let her express herself creatively. Maria plans to study fashion and writing after graduating from Coronado High in 2024. Have a story for The Coronado Times to cover? Send news tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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