Inaugural ‘Side Project’ Short Film Festival – Winners Announced

On Tuesday 2 December, Snowy Mountains Grammar School announced the winners of its inaugural film festival, Side Project.

The festival was designed for SMGS students in Years 7 to 10 to express their creative side as digital content creators. Also, as the name implies, it provides an opportunity for students to undertake this side project in their very busy lives and to be brave in expressing themselves through the art form of digital media.

“We are acutely aware that the role of a content creator has changed dramatically, with the continual development of social media becoming part of the fabric of our society,” Scott Frize, Director of Learning Innovation, says. “Content creation has diversified well beyond the traditional realms of film and television. As such, it is relevant and arguably important for our students to have opportunities to become well versed in being content creators themselves. It is increasingly becoming a mainstream skill that is highly transferrable to any/all entrepreneurial pursuits and modern workspaces.”

In order to cater to as wide a range of interests as possible, students could enter their works under five categories of film, being:

  1. Action – outdoor pursuits and action enthusiasts (four minutes maximum)
  2. Awareness – social, cultural, personal stories (four minutes maximum)
  3. Artistic Expression – music, dance, animation, nature and objects as art (three minutes maximum)
  4. Drama – traditional short film story-telling (seven minutes maximum)
  5. Flight – drone-only footage (three minutes maximum)

Up for grabs was $50 for each category, selected by our judges for the festival, Adam Kroenert (SMGS alumnus) and Lucas Wilkinson, both of whom are accomplished, professional local content creators. The overall winner received a smartphone gimbal to the value of $150.

Did SMGS actually achieve its outcome of encouraging its student body to undertake this ‘Side Project’? Check out the statistics below:

  • Thirty entries across five categories.
  • More than 900 views from the student body over the week.

A resounding YES!

Category People’s Choice Winners (student body vote):

Action – Jock Harding ‘The Mountains are Calling’

Awareness – Ely Frize ‘Disconnect’

Artistic Expression – Taj Maxwell ‘Jindabyne Life’

Drama – Matilda Henness ‘We’re Moving’

Flight – Milly Heska ‘A Bit of Jindabyne’

Overall Winner – Judges’ Vote

Judges Adam Kroenert and Lucas Wilkinson were in charge of determining the overall winner of the Side Project Film Festival.

Honourable Judges’ Mentions – 

Ebony Scott – My First Surgery 

Jock Harding – The Mountains are Calling

Joe Egger – The Crash

Thank you to all the students who entered and to the student body for supporting this event with viewing and rating the selection of short films on offer.

Also, a big thank you to Adam and Lucas who took the time to provide their honest and constructive feedback to students. “We are truly lucky to have such amazing role models in our community who continually inspire our students,” says SMGS.

With the success of this year’s event, Side Project will also run in 2021!


Uniquely located in the Snowy Mountains region in NSW, Snowy Mountains Grammar School is a K-12 co-educational day and boarding school that offers […]

  • (02) 6457 1022
©2022 UMCO. All rights reserved