Filmmaker Charles Hartman Dead After Long Illness
Filmmaker Charles Hartman
Is Dead After Long Illness
Longtime travel filmmaker Charles Hartman, is dead at 75. He had retired eight years earlier because of health problems.
A native of Warsaw, Indiana, he was in high school when he bought an old movie camera and soon began shooting the high school band—
the beginning of a second career in filmmaking.
He graduated from Indiana University, receiving a master’s degree in history—and bound for a career in teaching.
Charlie taught school in Indiana until he moved in 1970 to a Colorado junior high in Boulder. He had been shooting color slides and travel films all along, and In 1985 he left teaching to produce professional travel films.
His inaugural into this spirited new world occurred at the annual Intra-film film festival staged that year at the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C. Charlie was on-stage presenting his first film—with the lights out—when the Society’s fire alarm sounded.
Ralph Franklin, co-leader of a small team of filmmakers— and a booking agent— was in the audience and remembers Hartman’s cool and calm reaction handling the “emergency.” He added:
“Out team was so impressed with that, plus Charlie's photographic ability and narration, that we asked him to join the Franklin Film Artists. He was our hot new star.”
Hartman’s films mostly concentrated on European subjects, including Poland, Austria, Switzerland, Norway, Royal England. He also shot one riding bicycles across Europe with his son and three friends. He also had a great love for the West with films on Route 66 and Colorado, among others.
Charlie and son Steven (L) biking and filming in
Europe. The magazine cover is an earlier—
printed version of TAD
Hartman was with Franklin until he retired in 2008, 23 years. Said Ralph: “He was a perfectionist in his filmmaking, with a smooth and methodical pacing. I likened his voice to singer Mel Torme, the Velvet Fog. Charlie’s gone far too soon. And he will be missed.”
Charles Hartman died March 26. Besides son Steven, he is survived by his widow Margaret, and by his first wife, ZoAnn Brinkman, and three grandchildren.
Inurnment was at the Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Los Altos, California.