Last month, 18-year-old Kenya Mejia closed her valedictory address
at Los Angeles's Alexander Hamilton High School on a startling note:
publicly professing a secret passion for a classmate.
"I cannot let this opportunity just pass by," said Ms. Mejia, who is
to enroll at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the fall. "I
love you, Jake Minor!"
The crowd roared. Mr. Minor stood and pumped his fists in the air. A few days later, Ms. Mejia cashed a check for $1,800.
The commotion Ms. Mejia created was actually part of a ploy cooked
up by marketing executives and consultants for Twentieth Century Fox,
the Hollywood studio whose headquarters is less than two miles from
A valedictorian speech in the movie involves a similar reference. Here is the full story.