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HPU graduate breaks into film

by Mark Smith, Web and Opinion editor

Lights, camera, action! Cari Carter (Aguilar), a spring ’03 graduate of HPU, has broken into the short film industry.

Carter wrote her first script at HPU during her senior year. Currently, Carter’s film writing credits include The Right Spot and The Marrying Type, in which she plays one of the leading roles.


“I’ve had a desire to work in the entertainment industry for along time,” says Carter. “I’m looking forward to seeing our final product on screen.”

Carter got started in scriptwriting when her friend, actress Karrie Salmon, was looking for scripts in which to showcase her talent. Carter wrote her first script, “The Marrying Type,” for Salmon. The two worked in the film together and shortly afterward formed ChicK Productions, to produce more films. The two are currently working on ways to promote their new business venture.

“ The Marrying Type,” tells the story of Maya, a young woman who goes to her 10-year class reunion. Once there, she runs into the last person she wants to see – her ex-boyfriend. Old feelings resurface and Maya finds herself facing the possibility of reliving the past.

This was Carter’s first film venture as a writer. It was shot with a $2,500 budget, and the cast and crew mostly worked pro bono. Filming began in June and took one month to complete. Three months later the final cut was entered into film festivals. Both were selected by the ‘Ohina Showcase and will be screened on Oct. 17 and 18 at the Honolulu Academy of Arts. In November, “The Right Spot” will be featured in the Honolulu International Film Festival.

Carter grew up in New Brunswick, Canada. She spent several years in Montreal and Vancouver before moving to Hawai‘i in 2000. Carter graduated from HPU with a B.A. in Journalism. During her time at HPU, she worked as a writer and section editor for the Kalamalama. She also wrote for Senior View Magazine, the Downtown Planet, and the Montreal Suburban.

Salmon, a St. Louis, Missouri native, holds a doctorate degree in pharmacology, and has been acting and modeling in Honolulu since 2001. Her experience includes commercials, independent films, showcases, and various print ads. In addition, Salmon recently completed a public service announcement to be aired on ‘Olelo Community Television. Currently Salmon works as a pharmacist for the Department of Defense, and as an adjunct nursing professor teaching pharmacology for the nursing program at Kapiolani Community College.

Carter lives in Waikiki where she works as a freelance writer and editor.




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