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New York Film Academy Bachelor of Fine Arts
Producing school student oversees student crew on set Producing students film in an airplane set Student sits at table as film crew shoots Measuring a shot from camera to student on set

Overview of our BFA in Producing

Our three-year Bachelor's is for highly motivated students who would like to enter an intensive hands-on professional course of study. By completing the Bachelor's degree in three-years students:
  • Save one year of expenses
  • Enter the field of their choice a year early
The Academy makes this accelerated schedule possible by creating an extended academic year allowing students to complete three full-length semesters in each calendar year. Students may also choose to complete the program in a traditional four-year time frame.

New York Film Academy BFA in Producing program is offered at our Los Angeles Campus.

Qualified students have the option of completing course work at the New York Film Academy in New York City in a one-year non-degree program and then applying their course work to be accepted for advanced standing in the BFA Producing degree program.

The role of the producer is often misunderstood but always integral to the successful execution of a film or television series. What does a producer do? What are the differences between creative producing and production management? In the New York Film Academy Bachelor of Fine Arts in Producing program, students delve into these questions and gain an immediate understanding of these differences. Through extensive coursework, study and practicums, students will develop the knowledge and skills of effective collaboration and producing.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Producing is a three-year, eight-semester program intended to instruct and prepare future film, television and other visual media producers for the fields of creative producing and production management. Areas of creative producing the students will be introduced to and will master are story and script development, creative collaboration methods, the ever-evolving ways to secure financing and the various and ever-changing distribution options available to producers. Production management functions that will be introduced and practiced are physical production management and line producing.

During their first two years of study, students will learn creative producing and production management skills while developing and expanding their breadth of knowledge through extensive coursework in the liberal arts. These liberal arts studies include courses in Foundation Studies, Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences. In their third year, students will round out their educational experience through advanced specialized courses in producing as well as upper level liberal arts electives.

Through a variety of courses, each designed to focus on one of the many specialized areas within the discipline, students will be introduced to and instructed in the mastery of tools and techniques critical to successful producing and production management. Our producers will be prepared to function in the professional workplace, whether in a creative producing environment or in physical production where effective production management skills are required.

SEMESTER ONE OBJECTIVES

In the first semester, students are introduced to key principles of producing for film and television and will develop the tools required for effective producing. Through coursework in directing, cinematography and editing, they will develop, shoot and complete two short films. Students will round out their learning with Foundation Studies English Composition and Computing. Students will be introduced to Film History.

SEMESTER TWO OBJECTIVES

In the second semester, students will continue to challenge their production abilities artistically and technically. Students are instructed in the craft of screenwriting and will learn storytelling concepts of structure, formatting, style, conventions and character development through writing an original short narrative script. They will learn of the variety of creative collaborations that are formed in developing and producing film and television. They will be introduced to finance, marketing and distribution principles integral to the entertainment industry. They will develop and produce a short documentary or news segment and put into practice their increased production skills. Foundations Studies allow the students to continue building their educational foundation and develop analytical skills through courses in Critical Thinking and Physical and Mental Wellness. Students will be introduced to Critical Film Studies.

SEMESTER THREE OBJECTIVES

In semester three, students will research and analyze newsworthy and relevant topics pertaining to the entertainment industry. They will analyze common pitching styles and practices employed by producers. They will write an original reality television series proposal. They will undertake the development, prep, production and completion of a short narrative film. They will round out their Foundation Studies with courses in Public Speaking and Mathematics and they will be introduced to Art History.

SEMESTER FOUR OBJECTIVES

In semester four, students will advance their line producing skills through collaborations with NYFA filmmakers whereby students will line produce a longer form short narrative film for NYFA filmmakers. They will learn to craft professional caliber resumes. Students will develop and write an original television series pilot treatment and an original feature film treatment. They will seek and secure an ongoing collaboration with a screenwriter for the purpose of developing an original feature length script. They will learn the basic principles of entertainment law. They will learn the components of effective feature film business plans for investors and for studios, as well as the elements of standard television series show bibles. Students will expand their liberal arts studies to include coursework in Environmental Biology as well as the choice of two Social and Behavior Sciences electives.

SEMESTER FIVE OBJECTIVES

During semester five, students will develop an articulate and effective pitch of an original film or television treatment. Students will write a first draft television pilot script. They will be introduced to producing alternative media, including commercials, web series, and music videos. They will learn the principles of entertainment accounting and cost management. They will analyze picture, sound and music editorial and will be introduced to visual effects and their usage. Students will be exposed to acting techniques and methodologies. They will study production design, wardrobe and makeup artistry and will create a look book of images for an original project idea. Studies in the History of Art, Culture and Society as well coursework in the Natural Sciences will give more depth to students’ learning.

SEMESTER SIX OBJECTIVES

In this semester, students will develop and write an original first draft screenplay. They will learn principles of business affairs relevant to the entertainment industry. They will develop and complete a new media piece. They will interact with industry leaders in a seminar setting to learn their varied beginnings and paths to success. They will participate in an industry internship for practical, supervised experience or will prepare a scholarly research paper on a topic of relevance to the entertainment industry. Student will continue their studies in the Social Sciences and the Natural Sciences.

SEMESTER SEVEN OBJECTIVES

In this semester, students begin to synthesize their coursework to date and begin to position their thesis efforts for the final two semester of the BFA program. They will continue their creative collaboration with a screenwriter. They will identify techniques used by past and current cinematic innovators and their impact. Students will build upon their entertainment law coursework with the analysis of legal cases. Students will begin to develop full producer pitches for a varied audience. They will participate in an industry internship for practical, supervised experience or will prepare a scholarly research paper on a topic of relevance to the entertainment industry. Coursework in Arts and Humanities and one upper level elective round out this semester.

SEMESTER EIGHT OBJECTIVES

During the eighth and final semester, students focus primarily on their thesis projects. They will continue to research, develop and finalize the multiple components of the thesis requirements. Students practice goal setting, workflow management, and adherence to productive work habits and deadlines. They will continue their creative collaboration with a screenwriter. They will undertake an advanced directing practicum that exposes them to advanced directing techniques. They will learn advanced cinematography and lighting techniques. Students will learn advanced sound design.

They will participate in an industry internship for practical, supervised experience or will prepare a scholarly research paper on a topic of relevance to the entertainment industry. Students will build upon their knowledge of cinematic innovators and study cinematic movements past and present. Students will develop producer branding techniques and will build a production company website. Students will take one upper level elective in their liberal arts to round out their undergraduate studies.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Producing program culminates in an evening with industry representatives invited to participate in the BFA in Producers Pitch Fest. Students will present their thesis work in film or television to the industry guests in individual pitch sessions for critique and feedback. This event allows the students to present their projects during an exciting evening of industry contact development and networking.



Course Descriptions

Producers Craft
Directing for Producers I
Cinematography, Lighting & Editing
Producers Craft II
Introduction to Screenwriting
Producing Documentaries
Sound for Producers
Entertainment Law & Business Practices I
Producing Reality Television
Short Film Production I
Pitching , Business Plans, & TV Show Bibles
Business Affairs
Writing the TV Pilot Treatment
Writing the Feature Film Treatment
Short Film Production II
Industry Speaker Series
Writing the TV Pilot Screenplay
Budgeting & Entertainment Accounting
Thesis Development Workshop I
Producing Alternative Media
Acting for Producers
Writing the Feature Screenplay
Script Collaboration I
Thesis Development Workshop II
Entertainment Law & Business Practices II
Script Collaboration II
Thesis Development Workshop III
Advanced Pitching Workshop
Directing for Producers II

Producers Craft

This core introductory course outlines the essential roles, tasks and obstacles faced by producers in the entertainment industry. Topics include navigating the studios, television networks and emerging media as well as the relationship between producers and the unions, guilds and talent agencies. From the producer’s perspective, students will discuss and analyze their current projects in development or production. Relevant events in the entertainment industry will be presented and analyzed. Students will be introduced to and trained on the industry-standard software used by producers, Movie Magic Scheduling and Movie Magic Budgeting.
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Directing for Producers I

Effective producers create a collaborative and artistic production environment that enhances each director’s skills and provides the support needed to make the best possible project. Students will work in collaborative groups to develop and shoot a short film. In addition, each student will direct his or her own individual mise-en-scène. Students will learn the basics of film directing and how to collaborate to tell a visual, narrative story. Students will learn film production standards and practices, working with basic production documents, working with actors and the fundamentals of telling a story through a camera.
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Cinematography, Lighting & Editing

Students will learn the basics of live-action motion picture cinematography in a hands-on workshop environment. They will gain an overview of working with film and video cameras, lighting, image construction, and composition. Students are instructed in the basic techniques of digital editing. They will learn the basics of motion picture editing and post-production techniques. They will gain an overview of nonlinear editing, post-production audio, basic visual effects, and professional post-production workflow.
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Producers Craft II

This course continues the study of the essential roles of and obstacles faced by film and television producers. Topics include optioning and developing material, film festivals, networks and ratings and analyzing U.S. and international tax incentive and rebate programs. Students develop professional-caliber resumes, cover letters and lists of references. They will formulate a plan to secure an internship and participate in a supervised internship for academic credit.
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Introduction to Screenwriting

Producing students will gain firsthand knowledge of fundamental screenwriting techniques and will develop strategies in communicating with the producer’s key collaborator in story development, the screenwriter. Each student will develop and write a five-page original narrative script to be produced in the Short Film Production I course.
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Producing Documentaries

This course offers producing students an introductory exposure to documentary storytelling and filmmaking. Working in small collaborative teams, students will pitch, develop, and shoot a short documentary.
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Sound for Producers

Motion picture sound is often overlooked and taken for granted. In this course, students will learn about the fundamentals of both production sound and post-production sound and gain an understanding of how sound can enhance their stories. In a studio environment, students will get hands-on experience working as sound mixers as well as boom operators. They will also gain knowledge in how to add sound effects, music, and dialog replacement to their films.
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Entertainment Law & Business Practices I

This course is an overview of contract law and how it impacts the entertainment industry. Producing students will study legal issues regarding television, films, recordings, live performances, and other aspects of the entertainment industry. Topics include copyright law, intellectual property, and talent representation. Students will be introduced to finance, marketing, and distribution models for both studio and independent films.
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Producing Reality Television

Students will learn the basics of producing for reality television, and the genre’s relationship to other platforms and formats through the analysis of existing successful reality programming. Students will develop, create, and pitch an original reality television proposal.
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Short Film Production I

Producing students will develop, prep, and shoot their own individual short films. Students will receive instruction in a workshop setting on the fundamentals of sound recording. Working in teams, students will function as crew on each other’s productions. Scripts will be developed in Introduction to Screenwriting and finalized in this course. In the early part of Semester Two, students will edit and prepare their projects for a final screening.
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Pitching , Business Plans, & TV Show Bibles

Through in-class examples, students are introduced to effective pitching styles and instructed on how to pitch to investors and development executives. Students will develop a brief and effective pitch of the material they choose to pitch at the Producers Pitch Fest. Each student will practice and gain critical and fundamental pitching skills. Through lectures and analysis of case studies, students will learn the critical skills to develop effective feature film business plans and television show bibles. The feature business plan or television-show bible developed in this course will be presented at the Producers Pitch Fest.
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Business Affairs

Students analyze and discuss legal topics such as contract negotiations, marketing projects to financiers and distributors, and audience and research testing.
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Writing the TV Pilot Treatment

Students will revisit how the television industry operates and how television programs are pitched and developed. Each student will develop and write an original television pilot treatment.
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Writing the Feature Film Treatment

Through in-class instruction and critique, students will develop storytelling skills within the industry-standard format of the film treatment. In a workshop setting, each student will develop and write a detailed feature film treatment. Students will also have the option of beginning the screenplay writing process in the last part of this course.
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Short Film Production II

Students will further develop critical line producing skills. Working with NYFA filmmaking students, producing students will line produce a filmmaker’s Year One Film.
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Industry Speaker Series

These informative sessions feature discussions with producers and other industry professionals. Each session includes a Q&A, providing each student access to first-hand impressions of real world circumstances faced by working industry professionals.
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Writing the TV Pilot Screenplay

In a collaborative workshop setting, each producing student will develop an original drama or situational comedy pilot.
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Budgeting & Entertainment Accounting

This course provides an overview of production budgeting and financial, cost and managerial accounting functions specific to the film industry, with application to other areas of media production, including television. Students analyze techniques and control procedures for accurate preparation and presentation of budgets and financial statements. Topics include budgeting, cost reporting, and film accounting terminology.
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Thesis Development Workshop I

Students begin to conceptualize and develop their Thesis Projects. Topics include executive summary, logline, synopsis, story and character development, researching and analyzing comparable films or televisions shows, and developing effective comparisons. Students will view and critique sample teasers for creative style and effectiveness. Through lectures and examples, students will learn the critical skills to develop effective feature film business plans and television show bibles. Students will participate in a supervised internship for academic credit, benefiting from real-world application of their proposed thesis projects.
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Producing Alternative Media

It is essential for the producer to keep abreast of evolutions in new media technology and the many new outlets for distribution that continually emerge on an increasingly rapid basis. iPods, webcasts, the dynamic possibilities of multimedia tie-ins, and Alternate Reality Games, and the anti-piracy aspirations of digital 3D projection are a sampling of topics presented. Through in-class discussion and samples, students will be exposed to trends in these arenas. In this course, students will pitch, develop, and create an original piece of new media.
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Acting for Producers

In a workshop setting, students will develop a critical understanding of the acting process and what each actor brings to the collaborative process of filmmaking.
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Writing the Feature Screenplay

In a workshop setting, each student will develop and write a first draft screenplay. Structure, style, character development, and arcs are some of the topics that will be discussed and put into practice throughout this course.
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Script Collaboration I

In this course, students will be instructed and supervised in seeking and securing an ongoing collaboration with a screenwriter for the purpose of developing an original script. Students will employ their creative producing skills to communicate script notes and desired changes, and developing a positive working relationship with his or her screenwriting collaborator.
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Thesis Development Workshop II

Students continue to refine and finalize their Thesis projects. Option A candidates will prepare for their production green lights, while Option B candidates will finalize multiple components of their required thesis documents. Students will participate in a supervised internship for academic credit, benefiting from real-world application of their proposed thesis projects and they will create and maintain a production company website.
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Entertainment Law & Business Practices II

This course offers a deeper analysis of contract law and critical issues raised in contract negotiations. Copyright law and the protection of intellectual property are further analyzed. Focusing on domestic, international, and independent finance, marketing and distribution, and using case studies of actual campaigns, this course focuses on successful strategies for each of these vital aspects of producing.
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Script Collaboration II

Students will continue with their screenwriter collaborations for the purpose of completing a fully developed second draft of their scripts.
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Thesis Development Workshop III

In this course, students troubleshoot and finalize their entire written thesis presentations.
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Advanced Pitching Workshop

This course exposes students to a variety of successful pitch styles and formats in a workshop setting. Students will acquire advanced techniques in developing and executing effective pitches and they will develop and master an effective written pitch.
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Directing for Producers II

Through in-class exercises, students will gain a deeper understanding of the director’s integral creative role and directing craft. In a workshop setting, students learn advanced camera techniques, lighting concepts, and production sound. Working with the Thesis Option A equipment package and through a series of exercises, students will develop a deeper understanding of cinematography, lighting, and sound needs and how to creatively meet those needs.
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Dates & Tuition

Fees Per Semester

Tuition: $13,300 (USD) +
Equipment Fee: $700 (USD)




Location & Available Dates

For Los Angeles:
September 2016 - May 2019
January 2017 - September 2019
September 2017 - May 2020

Faculty

  • Tony Schwartz Tony Schwartz
    Chair of Producing
    BA in Film & Television Production from California State University, Fullerton. Spent 25 years as an assistant director and line producer for television and feature films of varying budgets. Also developing several projects with his company, Kohler Schwartz Productions. His credits include "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines," "Romy and Michele's High School Reunion," "Firefly," "Freaks and Geeks," "The Unit," and "CSI: New York."
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