'Jamie Smyth's Day Out' is our latest of Film of the Month

01 Mar 2023 in Film of the Month

6 mins
'Jamie Smyth's Day Out' is our latest of Film of the Month

You will be left in stiches with our latest Film of the Month winner Jamie Smyth's Day Out, following the antics of two friends who plot to get their friend out of school, from students at St Colmcille's High School, in Crossgar.

Jamie Smyth's Day Out (engaging for ages 7+) follows the antics of two friends who plot to get their friend out of school for the day, but can they get pull it off?

Terrific fun, made me laugh out loud and I was left wanting more!

Film of the Month Judge on 'Jamie Smyth's Day Out'

We caught up with students from St Colmcille's High School to get a glimp behind the scenes of Jamie Smyth's Day Out.

How long have you been making films?

Joseph - I've always been interested in filmmaking and have had a go at making some of my own content for YouTube. Mr. Hanna, our principal, was given some money to promote mental health and said he wanted us to write, direct, star in and edit our own short films with the money. I knew straight away that I had to be part of it! I was very happy to get to use the green screen. When we read the judges' comments, we were so proud of ourselves and were delighted to have won.

How long did it take from first conversation to the film's premier?

Kelsey - Our English teacher told us about the filmmaking project after February half term and we started to get planning straight away. We watched lots of different movies and explored different genres before deciding to go with comedy.

Once we knew what genre we were doing, we decide to focus on a storyline that would be easy to film so we looked at different locations in and around our school to use as set. We then moved onto concept and script before looking at camera angles and auditioning for roles.

Our premier evening in school was on May 4th - Star Wars Day - so in total the whole process took about 4 months.

How did you all work together as a group?

Emily - Our class voted on who they wanted to be the director of our short film and I was lucky enough to win the vote. We split the class into two groups. The ‘cast' and the ‘creative crew'.

Both groups focused on different elements of filmmaking such as script writing, screen directions, camera pans and acting. Members of our creative crew also came up with a production team with a logo and created a poster to promote our film.

What was it like to have your film premiere at your own school film festival?

Adam - It was a fun experience and the atmosphere on the premier night was electric. Everyone was buzzing and memories have been created for each one of us. At first, I was embarrassed for the whole school and our families to see my acting but once the movie was premiered, I was proud of myself because everyone was complimenting me and my friends. My mum was so proud!

During the premiere evening we got to watch the movies created by other classes - I was happy that we were the only class that chose to do a comedy film. Our school was transformed into the Oscars, we had a red carpet, limo, treats, popcorn, a raffle and even movie cut-outs in a photo booth. 

Are there any films or filmmakers that influenced Jamie Smyth's Day Out?

Cristiano - Our teacher is a big 80s movies fan so she had recommended that we watch Ferris Bueller's Day Off. We loved the comedy genre and we knew we had access to our school which would make it easy to re-create.

I played the leading role, Jamie Smyth, which was great because I love the spotlight being on me. My character was based on Ferris Bueller and I can see myself in the character!

If you could make Jamie Smyth's Day Out again, what would you do differently, and why?

Sofia - We have spoken about how we would change the movie if we were to make it again. We have all agreed that we could have spent more time focussing on each character or adding in more characters to the story. If we had more time, we could have done much more with this movie, but we are extremely proud of the outcome and had a great experience doing it.

What advice would you give to a group about to make their first short film?

Odhran - I was the sound manager for our film and was lucky enough to win an award at our school film festival as voted by staff and pupils. Three pieces of advice I would give to a group who are about to embark on their film making journey for the first time are:

  1. Be calm and take things one step at a time.
  2. Don't worry about getting things 100% perfect, because mistakes can always be edited... and they make great bloopers!
  3. Enjoy yourself and embrace ever second of it.

St Colmcille's High School's film will now be showcased to over 300,000 film club members online and all of our Film of the Month films are now on the Into Film YouTube channel, they have also secured a £100 Amazon voucher to help further develop their filmmaking. Think you could win Film of the Month? Find out more about how you can enter our ongoing Film of the Month competition.

If you've been inspired by Jamie Smyth's Day Out then make sure to check out the following films:

  • Ferris Bueller's Day Off (2009, 12, 99 mins) Engaging for ages 14+
    Ferris Bueller bunks off school to spend a fantastic day roaming about Chicago with his gloomy best friend and girlfriend.
  • School of Rock (2003, PG, 105 mins) Engaging for ages 7+
    Deciding to masquerade as a supply teacher at a private school, Dewey Finn proceeds to educate the pupils on the joys of rock in this uplifting comedy.
  • Cool Runnings (1993, PG, 94 mins) Engaging for ages 7-14
    In 1988, Jamaica surprised everyone by entering a bobsled team at the Winter Olympics. The rest is history!
  • E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982, U, 115mins) Engaging for ages 7-14
    Full of some of the most magical scenes in movie history, ET: The Extra-Terrestrial has had children and grown-ups laughing and shedding a quiet tear ever since it first captivated cinema audiences in 1982.

You may also be interested in...

Viewing 4 of 4 related items.

Into Film Clubs

Into Film Clubs

Find out everything you need to know about starting an Into Film Club.

News details

Want to write for us?

Get in touch with your article ideas for the News and Views section.