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Tips On Selecting A Film School

Aug 17, 2007
Filmmaking is not only an interesting, enjoyable and fulfilling career but very lucrative as well. Unfortunately, realizing the big Hollywood dream entails hard work, commitment and great amount of skill, right attitude, guts and some luck, too. While it is true that you're not in full control of your fate, the initial steps toward being a successful filmmaker depend on you. Choosing the right or the best film school where you would hone your talents, develop more interest and learn more knowledge in filmmaking is your first step. Your decision to choose a particular film school is very crucial to your success as a filmmaker since that film school shall equip you with or shall help you gain more knowledge, skills, techniques and experiences, which are essential to a filmmaker. Those are his tools in filmmaking that cannot be bought but are earned and cultivated through time.

1. Know What You Want

First of all, you have to know what you want. Ask yourself what realm of filmmaking do you want to venture in or what kind of films do you want to work on in the future? Do you want to be an independent filmmaker or a simple film artist? There are so many film schools in the country as well as in other parts of the globe and each has its own expertise. Knowing what you want in the first place would allow you to focus your research and thus refine your choices for good film schools. Also, this would help you save time and effort in searching for schools as you have already eliminated those that may not fit your interest and criteria.

2. What Are Your Considerations?

After deciding on what area you want to concentrate, you should also identify your major considerations in choosing a particular film school.

- the affordability of film courses
- the facilities of the film school
- the accessibility and proximity of the school
- the film school's reputation and quality of education

3. Don't Skimp On Your Education

Remember that a good film education is really expensive so do not just choose a film school that offers the cheapest film courses. It is important to consider the quality of education and the reputation of the school above all else. Remember that with that school, you are building a career that is supposed to be a life-long profession. Short-term film courses, say a 2-yr filmmaking course may be a lot cheaper than a 4-yr course and is quite helpful as most provide hands on training and a lot of project work. If you want to really excel in this field, however, you might opt for a longer course as it is more comprehensive.

3. Identify Where You Want To Study

Knowing where you want to cultivate your skills and intensify your interest in filmmaking is essential in selecting the right film school for you. This would refine your search as well since you would have to concentrate in looking for film schools only in one particular area or locality. New York is one of the best places to study film. It has the most developed art scenes for film and a number of reputable film schools. If affordability of the film course is one of your major considerations, you can choose a film school in Chicago and Milwaukee, which are known for having the most affordable film schools in the country. If you want to make it to Hollywood, better start your search for the best film school there in Los Angeles and nearby cities. There are lots of renowned film schools there that offer short and long term film courses.

4. Explore Colleges and Universities

Now that you have refined your criteria: the area in filmmaking you want to concentrate in, your major considerations such as the affordability of the courses, the school's reputation and the place, you can now do some research. As you explore your options, consider the things you have identified earlier. It would be better if you list down every film school's advantages and disadvantages so you can easily compare and contrast them. Also, as you examine the school's film courses and their special attributes, you can add some more considerations to your list and see which of the film schools you have considered meet the most of your requirements.

5. Narrow Your List

After going through several colleges and universities, narrow now your list by eliminating those that do not meet your criteria. With your short but well researched list of the best film schools, you can be more confident now of making a right decision. But before you finally select the film school, seek for other people's advice and recommendations, especially those who are well familiar with filmmaking.
About the Author
For more great Film Schools related articles and resources check out http://www.onlyfilmschools.com
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