ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — A Webster graduate is celebrating a milestone!
When Samantha Hake graduated from Webster Schroeder High School in 2008, she only dreamed she would one day win an award for her work.
Getting a degree in Television, Radio, and Film from Syracuse, Hake started her master’s journey at Newhouse School at Syracuse University with a focus on journalism.
“I went there, and took a filmmaking class, just as a requirement,” Hake said. “I immediately switched my major because I fell in love.”
After she graduated, Hake started her journey in Kansas, securing a job with Herizon Productions. She explained a little about the company.
“I got a job with Director Sharon Lee. We’ve worked together for 10 years,” Hake said. “Her and another director, Cynthia Wade, who is an Academy Award winning director. They partner in a lot of projects, and they fell in love with this factory in Wisconsin.”
This is where production took place for the now Emmy-award winning film, “The Flagmakers.”
“I got brought in as a producer,” Hake said. “We spent three years filming all of the employees at the largest American flag factory in the United States. It’s called ‘Eder Flag.’ We followed various stories of the people who work to make the flag. A majority of the people who work there are immigrants and refugees. And they’re the ones who are hand sewing and hand making our American flags. They can be anything from immigrants who are chasing the American dream that came here for a better life, to lifelong patriots who have been here forever.”
Hake said the film first premiered at the Camden International Film Festival in Maine. After that, it climbed up the ladder with a nomination for a Critics Choice Award. It was then shortlisted for an Academy Award, then nominated at the Emmys.
“We got our Emmy nominee for ‘Outstanding Short Documentary,'” Hake said. “The awards were on September 28 at the Palladium Theatre in Times Square. And we won! I got to go on stage and get to hold the Emmy trophy and the statue. It was very surreal. Very, very surreal.”
Hake said she hopes this is only the beginning, and is working on other big projects that are soon to be announced.