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New York Film Academy Filmmaking

Hands-on Intensive 8-Week Filmmaking Workshop

Two NYFA students in red NYFA t-shirts work together to set up an outdoor shot. A female NYFA student with long brown hair works with a steadicam to capture her outdoor shot. A NYFA student director in a black baseball hat points over his camera to give directions on a film shoot. NYFA filmmaking student uses RED camera

8-Week Filmmaking Workshop

OVERVIEW

In our 8-Week Filmmaking Workshop, each film school student writes, shoots, directs, and edits five of his or her own films and crews on 15 others.

Designed for people who wish to study the craft of filmmaking in an intensive environment, the 8-Week Filmmaking Workshop challenges students to produce five films over a period of two months.

For students with little or no filmmaking experience, the 8-Week Filmmaking Workshop offers the best of all worlds: focused learning, hands-on film productions, and the opportunity to make a fully-realized final film.

A NYFA student cinematographer in a windbreaker holds the camera while the student director in a green hat works with him to set up a shot.

FORMAT

The program is divided between hands-on instruction in class and the production by each student of a series of short films of increasing difficulty. Special classes in digital camera and lighting are given before students shoot their films. Students use HDSLR cameras, Lowel lighting packages, and digital editing systems to create their individual film projects. Following production and post-production of each film, students screen their work for their classmates and instructors and engage in critiques and discussion.

During the second month of the program each student writes, directs, and edits a final film of up to ten minutes. Students have a pre-production period to cast, scout locations, plan their final films and meet with instructors for one-on-one consultation.

At the end of the course, the final films are celebrated in a screening open to cast, crew, friends and family. All students who successfully complete the workshop receive a New York Film Academy certificate and leave the program with a digital master copy of all their projects.

CREWS

Students direct their own projects in three or four person crews, and will rotate through production positions when fellow crew members direct. This helps each student gain an strong familiarity with every aspect of film production as they rotate from director, to director of photography, to assistant camera, to gaffer/grip.

Course Descriptions

Director’s Craft
Writing
Editing
Hands-on Camera/Lighting
Production Workshop
Budgeting and Scheduling
Sound Recording

Director’s Craft

Director’s Craft introduces students to the language and craft of filmmaking. Topics covered include storyboarding, composition, camera movement, continuity, montage, pacing, and rhythm.
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Writing

This course is designed to help students develop their scripts for their final films. Students will be instructed in story structure, dramatic arc, creating characters, text and subtext, refining stories, and scriptwriting style.
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Editing

Editing is an art unto itself. Regardless of the editing system a filmmaker uses, it is the editor’s ability to work with the shots and tell a story that makes all the difference. Each student edits his or her own films using professional editing software and can supplement classes with individual consultations at the editing station. Students are taught the fundamental concepts of film editing, both practical and aesthetic.
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Hands-on Camera/Lighting

Through a series of hands-on classes and instructor-led workshops, students are introduced to the fundamentals of 16mm film before moving onto HD image making. The craft of composing images with HDSLR cameras will be taught "from the ground up" and presuppose no prior knowledge of filmmaking. The proper use of basic lighting instruments and their contribution to the image will be explored in class exercises and demonstrations. Through hands-on workshops and camera tests, students will also learn fundamental lighting techniques. As they progress through the workshop, students learn how to support the mood of the story with lighting choices and they experiment with expressive lighting styles.
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Production Workshop

The Production Workshop is designed to demystify the craft of filmmaking. It is a hands-on class in which students stage and shoot exercises under the supervision of the instructor. The technical aspects of filmmaking are seen as tools to realize the story. The guiding idea is that once students can articulate the objective of a given scene, the necessary craft and techniques will follow. Through the in-class exercises, the rules and tools of mise-en-scène and continuity are defined and practiced.
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Budgeting and Scheduling

This course introduces students to the craft of producing, preparing a budget and scheduling a film for shooting, including script breakdowns, call sheets, production schedules, permits, location insurance, and actor contracts. During the course, students will get an overview of all the essential elements of producing short films—ranging from pre-production through post-production.
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Sound Recording

This is a comprehensive class that details the process of sound recording. It provides concepts, technical information, and hands-on demonstration. Students are introduced to various types of recording devices and taught when to use them.
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Film Projects

Mise-en-scène
Continuity
Music & Montage Film
The Subtext Film
Final Film

Mise-en-scène

In their first film of the 8-week filmmaking workshop, students are introduced to mise-en- scène, or directing a shot to visually tell a story. Once they create a dramatic moment, they concentrate on the dynamics of the shot that will best express it. This project teaches students how the relationship between the subject and the camera creates drama. Each student designs and shoots a scene that has a beginning, middle, and end. Students will learn to pay close attention to the choice of lenses, camera distances, angles, movement, height and the blocking of subjects.

Since the story will be told within one long shot, it must be staged to express as much as possible about the characters and their actions. Students should rehearse the shot for blocking of actors and camera until the scene works without needing to stop; only then should they roll camera. Students shoot their film in high definition video, then edit and screen their projects for critique and discussion.
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Continuity

Continuity is one of the fundamental principles of modern filmmaking. By making a “continuity film,” students learn the way edits can advance the story while sustaining the reality of the scene, and the difference between “film time” and “real time.” Throughout the 8-week filmmaking workshop, students are challenged to make a film that maintains continuity in story, time, space and emotion. The action in these films unfolds utilizing a variety of shots (10–15) in a continuous sequence (no jumps in time or action). In the Continuity Films, students must produce a clear, visual scene while maintaining the authenticity of the moment. Students write, direct, shoot, edit, and screen a film of up to three minutes. Students must thoroughly pre-plan and complete a series of essential pre-production elements including script, location scouting, shot list, floor plan, and shooting schedule.
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Music & Montage Film

The third project in the 8-week filmmaking workshop introduces students to the relationship between sound and film, as well as to narrative tools like montage and jump cuts. In this project, students are encouraged to explore a more personal form of visual storytelling. For this film, students choose a piece of music, and in the editing room, they cut their images to work in concert with, or in counterpoint to, the music. Students should experiment with rhythm and pacing. Each student writes, directs, shoots, edits, and screens a film of up to four minutes. In addition to floor plans and shot lists, students may use a still camera to plan their films and assist them in their choice of locations, angles, lenses and lighting.
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The Subtext Film

This project challenges students to explore the relationship between dialogue and dramatic action. It serves as the student’s first foray into directing a film with dialogue recorded on set. Students are provided with short dialogue-only scripts with no description of physical detail or action. The student director determines the "who, what, where, when, and why" of the story. Above all, each student director must identify the characters’ objectives and dramatic beats of the scene.

In the 8-week filmmaking workshop, students will learn how these elements determine the meaning of the dialogue and should deepen their understanding of text versus subtext. When the finished projects are screened in class for critique, students will discover how different directorial interpretations of the same scene reveal the characters and the impact and meaning of the story.
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Final Film

This final film of the 8-week filmmaking workshop is more ambitious in scope than the previous exercises. It builds upon the foundation of skills and knowledge gained in the first half of the workshop. The final project may be 3-10 minutes in length, keeping in mind, "less is more."

Films may be of any genre, and can be narrative, documentary, or experimental. In past years, many of these films have been selected and won awards at film festivals, both in the U.S. and abroad.

Each student must complete a production book that includes the following:
  • Statement of Objective: Idea of the film and stylistic approach in a concise statement.
  • Scenario: Shooting script, shot lists, floor plan and shooting schedule.
The production period is two days for each film.

There is one week of post-production in which each student may edit from 20-30 hours. Students may use sound effects, music, voiceover, and ambient sound to help tell their stories. They apply the lessons learned through editing the first four projects as they utilize the many transition tools, special effects, and sound design options that digital editing allows.

Each film project is screened in a rough cut version in class for discussion and critique. These screenings are an important part of the learning process and help students improve on their film cut. There is a group screening during the graduation celebrating all final films open to cast, crew, friends, and family.

The final film is part of the six, eight, and twelve-week evening programs.
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Dates & Tuition

Fees

Tuition: $5,666 (USD) +
Equipment Fee: $1,069 (USD)


Students will also incur additional expenses on their own productions. This varies depending on how much film they shoot and scale of the projects.

Location & Available Dates

For New York City:
Sep 4, 2018 - Nov 3, 2018 ⊹
Oct 1, 2018 - Dec 1, 2018
Oct 22, 2018 - Dec 19, 2018 ⊹
Jan 7, 2019 - Mar 2, 2019
Feb 4, 2019 - Mar 30, 2019
Mar 4, 2019 - Apr 27, 2019
Apr 1, 2019 - May 24, 2019
May 6, 2019 - Jun 29, 2019
Jun 3, 2019 - Jul 27, 2019
Jul 8, 2019 - Aug 30, 2019
Aug 5, 2019 - Sep 28, 2019
Sep 3, 2019 - Nov 2, 2019 ⊹
Oct 1, 2019 - Nov 26, 2019

For Los Angeles:
Sep 4, 2018 - Nov 3, 2018 ⊹
Jan 7, 2019 - Mar 2, 2019
Feb 4, 2019 - Mar 30, 2019
Mar 4, 2019 - Apr 27, 2019
Apr 1, 2019 - May 25, 2019
May 6, 2019 - Jun 29, 2019
Jun 3, 2019 - Jul 27, 2019
Jul 8, 2019 - Aug 30, 2019
Aug 5, 2019 - Sep 28, 2019
Sep 3, 2019 - Nov 2, 2019 ⊹
Oct 1, 2019 - Nov 26, 2019

For Florence Italy:
Sep 23, 2018 - Nov 17, 2018
May 5, 2019 - Jun 29, 2019
Sep 29, 2019 - Nov 16, 2019

For Gold Coast Australia:
Sep 10, 2018 - Nov 2, 2018
Jan 28, 2019 - Mar 22, 2019
May 20, 2019 - Jul 12, 2019
Sep 9, 2019 - Nov 1, 2019

For South Beach Florida:
Sep 4, 2018 - Nov 3, 2018 ⊹
Jan 7, 2019 - Mar 2, 2019
Mar 4, 2019 - Apr 27, 2019
Jun 3, 2019 - Jul 27, 2019
Jul 8, 2019 - Aug 30, 2019
Sep 3, 2019 - Nov 2, 2019 ⊹



Please note: Dates and Tuition are subject to change
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