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New York Film Academy
New York Film Academy About Us
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About the New York Film Academy

NYFA administrators Michael Young and David Klein with Martin Scorcese The lobby at NYFA's Battery Park campus The New York Film Academy's LA campus

Our History

The New York Film Academy was founded by veteran producer Jerry Sherlock in 1992, who produced such classics as The Hunt for the Red October. Encouraged by friends of his who wanted to send their children to film school, but found the prices too costly, Sherlock designed a school that was not only affordable, but more importantly, was founded on the principle of learning by doing.

Inspired by the idea that to learn how to make movies, one must actually make movies, Sherlock and his colleagues designed a truly unique curriculum. Blending a mixture of traditional film school instruction with a new approach that emphasized coursework based around students actually going out and shooting films as part of their coursework. Each student writes, produces, directs, and edits his or her own original films while also serving as crew members on their fellow classmates’ films to gain extensive on-set experience.

Over the years, the New York Film Academy has expanded both the scope of its curriculum and its global presence, establishing campuses in Los Angeles—where students can earn a degree—and Abu Dhabi alongside campuses and locations in the following cities and destinations:

South Beach, Florida Disney Studios, Florida Harvard University
Doha, Qatar Paris, France Moscow, Russia
Florence, Italy Sydney, Australia Gold Coast, Australia
Beijing, China Shanghai, China Koyto, Japan
Mumbai, India Seoul, Korea Jakarta, Indonesia

At NYFA, we provide you with the tools and know-how, and you actually apply what you learn in class in the real world, making it for an educational experience unlike any other.

What Makes Us Unique

Students work hands-on with the Red Epic camera at NYFA
Learning By Doing
One must make movies to learn how to make them, which guides each program at the Academy.

NYFA students filming at a museum as part of their class
Full Immersion
Students fully commit themselves to their chosen craft, working on their own projects and assisting their classmates.

Students receive hands-on camera experience at NYFA
Hands-On Experience
From day one students are behind the camera, working with equipment, and gaining first-hand expertise in their craft.

Students get on-set experience at New York Film Academy
Entertainment Capitals
Whether studying at our NYC, LA, or other campuses, students are exposed to rich artistic environments outside of the Academy.

Photographer Peter Hurley is a guest lecturer at NYFA
Professional Education
Each department’s faculty is comprised of professional experts who are accomplished and active in their field.

Students practice dancing at the New York Film Academy
Always Evolving
The Academy is continually expanding our course offerings to keep up with the ever-evolving entertainment industry.

Academy Philosophy

It is our belief that the most significant art form of our time is the moving image. Through the mediums of film, video games, and animation, individuals, communities, and nations express their most profound visions of humanity to the world.

Intensity is a hallmark of the Academy's workshops, which range from screenwriting to documentary filmmaking to producing for film and television. Students who partake in these workshops eat, drink and breathe filmmaking, acting, or photography from day one. Their classes emphasize hands-on learning and inspire creativity. They also provide hard facts students need to begin the process of developing creative, thought provoking, and entertaining work. This is not a course for passive participants. Students must take an active role in every aspect of the workshop.

Each of our students writes, directs, shoots, and edits his or her own short films, creates his or her own video game, or designs his or her own animated characters in our hands-on workshops. Students in our workshops develop skills that apply to all their future pursuits. The organizational, leadership, writing, and critical thinking skills developed through producing complex productions will be of enormous value to our students in college and in all their future endeavors.


* All MFA, BFA, BA, MA, and AFA degree programs are offered only at the New York Film Academy Los Angeles campus.