The life of Alexis Echavarria was short and impactive, just like the motion picture he created before he died. It ended in the early morning of August 4, 2005 in Santa Monica, California, as abruptly as his thought provoking film, “18 Minutes”. Alexis had just returned from a four-week sojourn in Thailand, assisting in the tsunami relief effort and helping the poor, a service he had longed to do, when he suddenly died from a heart attack brought on by bacteria he had picked up on his stay. He had been part of a group of high school students, who were working with Lifeworks International at various projects organized by the Duang Prateep Foundation in Thailand.
Alexis wrote the script for “18 Minutes” at the age of 15, winning the
“Best Screenwriting” award, at the Idyllwild Arts Academy, a performing arts high school in Idyllwild, California. The following year, Alexis filmed “l8 Minutes” with the help of his fellow classmates at the Moving Pictures Department, where the Alexis Annex was built in his memory, in Oct. 2009.
He centered his theme on the Plato quote, “Those who have loved or are loved will not walk in darkness”, which we see reflected in a number of lives, during the last 18 minutes before the sun is extinguished.
His film was selected for The Palm Spring’s International Short film festival, the week before he returned from Thailand. Since then, “18 Minutes” has shown and received awards in many different film festivals and venues around the world.
Read more about Alexis at his official website: www.alexisechavarria.com