Pacific alumna, Halima Lucas ’13, won the 2017 HBO Short Film award at the American Black Film Festival earlier this month for her film “Amelia’s Closet.” The award includes a $10,000 prize.
The film is about a girl who is bullied at school and retaliates by stealing from classmates and hiding the items in her closet. When she is caught, she is forced to confront the hidden items in her closet and find a true sense of empowerment from her father.
“It means so much for this to happen on Father’s Day,” Lucas said as she accepted her award. “If you’ve seen the film, you’ve seen how big a role her father plays in her self esteem and to overcome adversity.”
Lucas said the film was based on her experience and thanked her family for supporting her.
Lucas, a communication major with double minors in ethnic and film studies, began developing her potential as a filmmaker during her time at Pacific. She received the Outstanding Research Project on Diversity award for her documentary, “Building Bridges,” which explored the generation gap between English-speaking Cambodian American children and their Khmer-speaking parents.
Lucas also produced and directed “A Family of My Own: The Bill Jones Story” about Pacific alumnus Bill Jones ‘51, the first single man to adopt a child in California and an advocate for equal marriage rights. A gay civil rights activist, Jones made a donation to create the Rainbow Resource and Study Room in the William Knox Holt Memorial Library, which was dedicated in 2015.
After graduating from Pacific, Lucas attended the USC School of Cinematic Arts where she graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in 2016.
The American Black Film Festival is an annual event that showcases films by and about people of African descent and is considered a pipeline for Black talent in front of and behind the camera.