Film Making Courses
Film Making Courses – What’s Right For You?
The film industry has many specialties and selecting the right film making courses for what you want to accomplish is confusing for many students. Most students interested in working in the film industry are initially thinking about the actual film production process so film production courses will be what they're looking for.
The film production process is actually only about 5% of the work that goes on in the filmmaking. For many people who would like to work in the film industry, but may not realize that there are many well paid options that don’t involve being on a film set, courses in film may not be the right way to go.
Where Can You Find Film Making Courses?
Film making courses are offered at any number of leading universities but beware of the time and costs involved in signing up for a course of studies that will lead to a degree in film.
The top rated film schools in Los Angeles and the N.Y. film schools have a reputation based on a small number of notable graduates that have become award winning filmmakers.
Although many of the top film schools have exalted reputations they are also very difficult to get into, very expensive for the quality of instruction and take years to complete.
Among the film school secrets overlooked by most aspiring film students is that these expensive film schools are not the only, or even the best, way to start a career in making films.
Before inexpensive video cameras and computer editing were available it made a certain amount of sense to go to a top film school. But now many local community colleges offer film production courses using equipment that is fully the equal of any available at the top ten film schools such as a film school in Los Angeles or a New York film school.
The basic skills you need to learn to make a film are not very complicated. Most of the great filmmakers in the history of Hollywood were largely or entirely self-taught. Don't assume you need to pay a fortune to know enough to work on a film set, or even to produce your own films.
Many excellent online and DVD courses are available for very little money. Available books go into great detail in every area of the filmmaking process and are also very inexpensive. A number film web sites and online film schools, such as the one you are looking at now, offer a wealth of free information.
Film Making Courses For Preproduction
Long before the director shouts “action” there are many steps that happen starting with developing a story concept and writing a screenplay. Although knowledge of film production is very useful at this stage the process mostly involves mental creativity, brainstorming and writing. Being a great storyteller is probably the single most vital characteristic of great filmmakers.
Look for local classes in creative writing and screenplay writing. Being in a screenwriter's group is extremely valuable and even the most successful screenwriters are often members of such a group. A screenwriter's group consists of several writers who get together regularly, such as once a month, to read each other's work and get helpful feedback. A writer's work is very lonely and often a writer is not sure if something they have written is "working". The companionship and feedback of other writers is most valuable.
Once a screenplay has been completed to the satisfaction of the producers the next tasks involve negotiating for funding, followed by obtaining agreements with actors and the members of the creative team who will actually create the film.
These steps are accomplished by producers who are business men and women knowledgeable in the entertainment industry, and lawyers who negotiate and write the various contracts.
The training for these often highly paid positions are basic business management and entertainment law.
Film Production Courses
Now everything is in place to actually film the screenplay so this is where all the actors come together with the director and other workers on the set. Most of the courses offered at film schools are film production courses designed to train in the tasks that take place on the film set.
Most film students dream of becoming famous film directors but there is actually very little demand for directors and the job can be one of the most frustrating and involve some of the longest work hours of any job in filmmaking. Be careful what you wish for.
Most student who go to the expensive top film schools to get a degree in film are believing they will become film directors. The majority of them will never direct a film.
Film Making Courses for Post Production
Once the film is “in the can” there are still many steps required before it will show up at your local theater or on DVDs at your store.
The raw footage needs to be edited. This involves finding the best takes and assembling and cutting them together into the best sequence for telling the story. Music and sound effects will be added and appropriate titles are also created.
A related task involves creating "trailers" used to advertise the film. Additional filmmakers may be on the set filming interviews with the cast and crew in preparation for the DVD's special features.
Editing courses are taught in many film schools but the best way to learn is probably in an apprenticeship arrangement with an experienced editor. Good editing is as much an art as it is techniques and requires many, many years of experience to get really good.
Most films created today require at lease some digital special effects. Learning to use 3D and high-end compositing software is a craft requiring years of specialized training in art schools and much practice. Because this work is so time consuming and specialized it requires special training don't try to do it yourself. Most independent filmmakers don't have the time to learn the details of how to do digital effects and because technology changes so fast it is a poor use of most filmmaker's time to try to learn. Film school graduates that specialized in this type are work are all around and will work for you for cheap or free to get material for their "reel".
When the film is completed a marketing team takes over putting together the advertising campaign that will hopefully convince people to come see the film. In actuality the process often involves test screenings at studios or at film festivals to gather audience feedback which is used to improve the film through additional editing or even re-filming scenes.
Most of this work is done by business people with experience in entertainment marketing. The appropriate courses for this work are general and specialized business classes available through many schools at all levels of expense.
And Happy Filmmaking!
Some excellent Film Making Courses
There are a lot of way to learn about filmmaking. If there aren't any good, cheap classes available in your area here are some excellent, comprehensive resources you can get.
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