RANDOLPH NJ - Students in the Randolph High School mass media program hosted the 22nd annual Film Festival  on May 29, which featured numerous short films, approximately 23 of which received awards in a variety of categories. The coveted “Best of the Festival” award went to seniors Michael Breen, Corey Dalmedo, CJ Colombaris and Spencer Seligson for their short film “Orbis”, a film about a boy who runs from home, who is later sent to military camp where he meets someone to mentor him. The four seniors also hosted the evening ceremony. The award was presented by last year’s winners, Jake Wichansky and Holden Zuschlag, both from the RHS Class of 2018.

Numerous under- and upperclassmen took part in Randolph’s film festival, submitting approximately 80 short films for the festival, 23 of which received awards. During the catered dinner, two managers from the STEM office at Picatinny Arsenal, Shahram Dabiri and Matthew Stracco, awarded GoPro cameras to student filmmakers who won in the STEM category for their work educating younger children about the STEM fields :

STEM Winners

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East Orange: Maria Ortiz, Tamara Clark

Science - Belle Christ

Engineering - Tim Collins

Technology - Michael Breen, Corey Dalmedo

Selected members of the senior film honors class were then awarded scholarships sponsored by the Randolph media program for their contributions and dedication to the program. Senior CJ Colombaris, winner of the CAMERAS and Video Club Leadership scholarships, stated, “It felt really good to be acknowledged for what I’ve done for the program.” Other scholarship winner was senoir Nickie Murray, who won the A.M.M.A award (Academic Mass Media Award).

The film awards were presented in the following categories:  PSA (Public Service Announcement); STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics); trailer, experimental; horror; sci-fi; suspense; drama; comedy; and screenplay. Attendees enjoyed a catered meal from a variety of restaurants all over Morris county.

Approximately 400 people attended the Randolph High School film festival to watch the short films, which students produced over the last couple months. “I had a really good time, and I would encourage anyone to stop by and see the films my friends and peers have been working so hard for,” stated junior Caitlin Ayre. As in prior years, honorary guests included students from the East Orange Stem Academy, who showed their own STEM videos.


Award Recipients


Comedy: I is Smart - Sophia Montano, Samara Fishkin, Reilly Widmayer

Drama: Love, Emily - Chloe Troiano, Caitlin Olive

Documentary: Never Enough - Sophia Montano, Samara Fishkins

Horror/Sci-Fi: File Not Found - Sophia Montano, Samara Fishkins

PSA: It’s Not Just a Dream - Chase Bolnick, Chris Guarente

Commercial: Cranberry Sprite - Viral Rathod, Brain Macaluso

Music Video: “Favorite Color is Blue” - Evan Lord, Nick Gallo, JT Zangara

Best Special Effects: Favorite Color is Blue - Evan Lord

Best Cinematography: “Hey Ho” The Lumineers - Emma Leary


Artwork: Eric Weinstein

Comedy: Stevie and Stella - Sabrina Hajsok

Drama: Orbis - Michael Breen, CJ Colombaris, Corey Dalmedo, Spencer Seligson


Documentary: Sundance Documentary - Michael Breen, Eliana Koenigsberg, CJ Colombaris, Corey Dalmedo, Nickie Murray, Spencer Seligson, Sabrina Hajsok, Luke Scanzera, Malina Ruiz


Horror/Sci-Fi: Tessa - Corey Wichansky, Eitan Leinward

PSA: Don’t Be That One - Eliana Koenigsberg

Suspense: The Case of Jennifer James - Malina Ruiz, Sabrina Hajsok, Nickie Murray, Eliana Koenigsberg

Movie Trailer: Sundance - Michael Breen

Experimental: What Matters? - Corey Wichansky, Eitan Leinward

Best Editing: Orbis - Corey Dalmedo

Best Direction: Michael Breen (Orbis)

Best Use of Music: Orbis - Michael Breen, Corey Dalmedo

Best Actress: Julia Frost  (Bright Lights and Cityscapes)

Best Actor: CJ Colombaris (Orbis)


Best of the Festival: Orbis - Michael Breen, CJ Colombaris, Corey Dalmedo, Spencer Seligson

Editor's Note: Mariah Ochieng is a student at RHS participating in a journalism program.