SANTA MONICA, Calif. (KABC) -- Carlos Hurtado first dreamed of becoming a filmmaker as a student at Saint Monica Catholic High School.
"I was thinking, what is something that I can do for the rest of my life that I love and passionate about? Something that was fun, something that was creative," he said.
He discovered that his dream for the future was to make movies. Inspired by films, like the 1985 hit "The Goonies," Carlos has gone on to win several awards, including best emerging American filmmaker at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival in France.
He's also directed powerful short films that are changing children's lives, partnering with nonprofits such as Padres Contra El Cancer and Hollygrove.
Hurtado's biggest advice to aspiring film directors is to be yourself.
"Embrace who you are. Sometimes it may be scary, but at the end of the day that's how you discover who you are," he said.
To learn more about Hurtado, you can check out his website at carloshurtadofilms.com
Dreams come true for local filmmaker from Santa Monica