(Secaucus, NJ––March 2, 2022) High Tech senior Samiksha Thakur took home the trophy for Best Student Film at the 2022 Golden Door Film Festival held in Jersey City, announced Ms. Kathy Young, principal of High Tech High School.
The film, Miss Fortune, is a romantic comedy about high school student Jane, who receives a mysterious, handwritten fortune while on a date with her crush. The brainchild of Samiksha Thakur, who wanted to tell a story about the potential pitfalls of a young girl who puts too much faith in tarot and fortune cookie messages, Miss Fortune was co-written with HTHS senior Daisy Levine and co-produced by HTHS senior Cesar Ovalles. In fact, the bulk of the cast and crew in this award-winning film are students at High Tech, including camera operators Essence Brevard-Alouidor, Nixi Fuentes, and Diana Ortez; wardrobe stylist Kimani Culbreath; and photographer/videographer Naima Idrissi. Cast members included co-starring HTHS students Lucy Baron (as Jane), Nyere Riley (as Jake) as well as Jovy Rose Mariano, Naima Idrissi, Bryan Santana, Essence Brevard-Alouidor, Kimani Culbreath, and Cesar Ovalles as supporting actors.
The Golden Door Festival award is just the latest accolade for this film, which previously won for Best Picture and Best Actor at the SE PA Teen Filmmakers Showcase. Miss Fortune was also a finalist for the Independent Shorts Award and the NYC Teen Film Festival. Impressively, this is only Samiksha Thakur’s second short film. Her prior work, Blue Iris, about a teen artist consumed by self-doubts over her future career, was screened at the Ridgewood Guild International Film Festival in 2021. That work earned her a place on a student film panel featuring HTHS alums and fellow filmmakers Noelle White and David Mansour.