New York Film Academy
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Screenwriting School at the New York Film Academy

Screenwriting graduate Angela Ruhinda sold her thesis script to ABC Screenwriting graduate Melissa Palazuelos is head writer on Gossip Girl Acapulco NYFA guest speaker Academy Award-winning screenwriter Robert Towne NYFA guest speaker award-winning screenwriter Paul Schrader NYFA guest speaker screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen

Discovering Your Voice at the Screenwriting School

In the film industry, screenwriters are now recognized as being just as important as directors in making films. The cliché still holds true. You can make a bad movie with a good screenplay, but you can't make a good movie with a bad screenplay.

Since no one is born with screenwriting talent the question is how exactly does one go about creating a script that will become a move or television program? Successful screenwriting requires discipline, perseverance, and training. One of the most difficult aspects of screenwriting is simply getting started. It’s one thing to have a great idea for a story, but acquiring the discipline to develop an idea into a treatment, an outline, a rough draft and finally a shooting script is just not something that comes naturally to most aspiring screenwriters. After years of stopping and starting, many writers find that by dedicating themselves to an intensive, top-notch screenwriting school, surrounded by other new writers, screenwriting can take on a life of its own and become second nature.

The New York Film Academy’s Screenwriting School’s Workshops and Programs are the most comprehensive screenwriting courses of all top film schools. Students can develop an idea into a feature-length screenplay in as little as eight or twelve weeks or hone their skills in our One-Year Screenwriting, Associate of Fine Arts*, Bachelor in Fine Arts*, and Masters in Fine Arts* programs and walk away with a body of work to begin their professional screenwriting journey. At each step of the way, the student is nurtured in a workshop environment.

There is no better screenwriting resource than superior training. Instructors at NYFA are award-winning, working screenwriters, most with a Masters Degrees from some of the country's finest university film schools. In addition, depending on the program or workshop one enrolls in, students have the option of studying at our screenwriting school in Los Angeles, New York City, or Australia.

Regardless of the workshop or program that one chooses, with strict adherence to the daily rituals of writing and learning, students will make potentially tremendous strides.

What Makes Our Screenwriting School’s Programs and Workshops Unique?

At NYFA, we understand the essential position that screenwriters play in the creation of film and television shows. But one cannot rely on writing talent alone to achieve success in the realm of cinema and television. Screenwriting is a unique art form, which students must learn if they want to not only complete a screenplay successfully, but also if they’re interested in creating a script that is entertaining and viable in the commercial marketplace. Over the course of their chosen workshop or program, students are educated in the conventions of the writing craft while being supported by experienced faculty. In addition, students can expect to be writing constantly with their work receiving feedback by both instructors and classmates.

Workshops and Programs

Whether students decide to pursue screenwriting through a degree program at our Los Angeles campus, our One-Year Screenwriting Program, or one of our intensive Eight-Week and Twelve-Week Evening Workshops, they can be sure that they will undergo extensive training in the many facets of screenwriting and be challenged at every turn by NYFA’s Screenwriting School.

  • Master of Fine Arts in Screenwriting*: The Screenwriting School’s two-year MFA program is a full-blown immersion into every aspect of screenwriting, from writing for television and film to the study of film craft, acting, pitching, and film studies, as they relate to screenwriting. In addition, students also write, direct, and edit a digital short film or scene from a script, preparing them to enter the film business with completed scripts to pitch, produce, and sell. After a first year spent working on smaller projects to best familiarize them with the varied formats of screenwriting, the second year will have students focus on creating a fully realized feature-length script or television series.
  • Bachelor of Arts in Screenwriting*: The three-year BFA program at NYFA’s Screenwriting School in Los Angeles not only immerses students in the art of screenwriting, but also provides them with a full liberal arts education in order to make them well-rounded screenwriters with a strong foundation. In addition, students write non-stop over the course of their eight semesters, creating an initial draft of an original 80-120 page screenplay in their first semester and continuing to write in different formats over the next three years, in mediums such as television, graphic novels, comic books, and manga. The program ends with a pitch event where industry executives are invited to hear students’ thesis projects to help them to cultivate their professional skills.
  • Associate of Arts in Screenwriting*: Like the Screenwriting School’s MFA program, the Los-Angeles-based AFA program provides a stand-alone degree in preparation for students to pursue a career in the film industry, allowing students to focus solely on the topic of screenwriting. Over the course of two years, students are able to hone their craft as writers with distribution requirements, giving them the chance to write intensively, completing multiple full-length movie and television scripts with the assistance of a dedicated faculty. Furthermore, each of the four semesters will include a Business of Screenwriting class that trains students to enter the film industry.
  • One-Year Screenwriting Conservatory: Offered at both our New York and Los Angeles campuses, students are taught in the conventions of writing while learning the skill of meeting deadlines. Throughout the course of the Screenwriting School’s One-Year Screenwriting Conservatory, students research film craft, acting, pitching, and film studies while also writing two feature-length screenplays and one television script.
  • Twelve-Week Evening Screenwriting Workshop: Created for aspiring screenwriters possessing little to no screenwriting experience, the Twelve-Week Evening Screenwriting Workshop is designed for individuals who are eager and capable to work in a fast-paced, high-charged learning atmosphere, entering the workshop with an initial idea that they will develop into a feature-length screenplay. The workshop is offered at our Los Angeles, New York, and Australia campuses.
  • Eight-Week Screenwriting Workshop: Covering similar ground to the Twelve-Week Evening Screenwriting Workshop, students in the Eight-Week Screenwriting Workshop will meet Monday through Friday during the day, learning the essentials of screenwriting. Students should enter the workshop with an idea that they will eventually develop into a full-length screenplay in addition to covering topics such as Classic Screenplay Structure, Character Arcs, Dialogue, Theme, Conflict, Flashbacks, Genre, Voice Over, Subtext, Visualization, and Dramaturgy. This workshop is available in Los Angeles and New York City.

Study Online at the School of Screenwriting

Do you want to receive training in screenwriting, but are unable to attend our locations in Los Angeles, New York City, or Australia? In response to increased demand, the Film Academy’s Screenwriting School has developed a duo of online courses available to students around the world from the comfort of their own computers.

The Film Academy’s Online Screenwriting School consists of two courses that are modeled on the programs and workshops offered at the Film Academy and developed by faculty members who created the courses for our programs. The online Screenwriting School covers the principle genres and formats available to screenwriters, focusing on feature films and television. Varying in length from sixteen weeks to nine months, prospective students need only a genuine interest and passion for screenwriting to enroll in one of our Online Screenwriting School courses.

An Overview of Online Screenwriting Courses

Unlike our in-person workshops and programs, NYFA’s Screenwriting School allows aspiring screenwriters the flexibility to receive a general education in the fundamentals of screenwriting for film and television while also honing their skills in a particular discipline.

  • Online Feature Screenwriting Course: Equal in scope and coursework as the Eight-Week Screenwriting Workshop, this nine-month course provides students with skilled training from a professional screenwriter who helps each student to conceive and complete an 80-120 page screenplay on his or her own time schedule that they can then pitch, produce, and attempt to sell. With thirty-eight lectures and screenings occurring weekly to download or stream in addition to online interaction between students and faculty, this is a demanding course in which students are expected to write daily.
  • Online Original TV Pilot & Series: With television becoming an increasingly fertile industry where groundbreaking shows like The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, or House of Cards are being held in similar esteem to cinematic classics, an increasing number of screenwriters are trying their hand at breaking into the market. The aspiring TV writer needs an original TV pilot script, which is the focus of this online course. Beyond creating a compelling pilot, students will learn how to create an ongoing show, one that can last over the course of several seasons. The sixteen-week class will feature taped lectures, weekly one-hour chats with the instructor, and feedback from fellow students.

The NYFA Difference

Regardless of enrolling at one of our locations or online, students attending the New York Film Academy Screenwriting School will have access to some of the finest instructors in the industry while being challenged by their fellow students from around the world. Students simply require a passion for original storytelling and a commitment to seeing their ideas from inception to completion to take advantage of the Film Academy’s many resources.

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