Film (BFA)

This Film program at University of the Arts challenges traditional ideas about how moving images are created, inspired by the work of cutting-edge practitioners in the field, including our own faculty. Among our faculty are an Academy Award–nominated independent filmmaker and award-winning television producer; a narrative filmmaker whose last feature was a New York Times “Critic’s Pick”; and an award-winning documentary filmmaker whose most recent films were selected for the 2020 and 2021 Sundance Film Festivals. With a student-to-faculty ratio of just 8:1, you’ll have close mentoring and individual attention as you develop your creative voice.

UArts’ Film programs offer a behind-the-camera experience unlike any other. Our unique, interdisciplinary courses give you the opportunity to collaborate with students across the university, including actors, screenwriters, composers and other student artists. You can also choose to major in one of our unique hybrid majors, such as Film and Animation or Production Design. 

There are no limits to the career options you'll have as with a degree in film—our programs are designed to teach you how to reach your individual goals. Our graduates become directors, editors, cinematographers, art directors and photographers, working in the region and around the world.  If you're interested in filmmaking and all that is involved with it, look no further than studying at UArts.

Gallery

 

A person in a blue robe has a blue face mask and blue shower cap and talks on a blue phone
An eye peeks out from a crochet shroud
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Watch a highlight reel celebrating 50 years of film at UArts!

Made by Alena Popolo BFA '20 (Film)

Curriculum

Whether your medium is animation or digital video and film, the program is dedicated to helping you bring your ideas to life. You'll work closely with award-winning faculty and other creative students to develop your skills, understand the rich history of your medium, and express your personal vision as you immerse yourself in a challenging and rewarding career.

At UArts, students have three ways to study film: 

Film
Provides you with an environment where traditional ideas about moving images are challenged.

Film + Animation
Allows you to explore the possibilities of both disciplines.

Film Design
Allows you to concentrate on the creative and artistic areas of production design involved in filmmaking.

About the Film Curriculum

You’ll learn about every aspect of the business from active professional filmmakers, including an Oscar nominee and directors whose work has screened at festivals around the world. You’ll use the same equipment used by professionals, including Black Magic and Canon cameras and a full array of support gear, lights and audio recording tools. Our facilities include multiple editing labs, individual edit suites and a black box studio. Our students often find their inspiration on the streets of Philadelphia, the same city that inspired films like ‘Creed’, ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ and ‘Twelve Monkeys.’ 

In addition to creating your own films, you’ll do an internship, maybe on a film or TV show being shot in our city – or in New York, Los Angeles, or abroad. Students have numerous opportunities to explore the industry outside of our city, including a trip to the prestigious Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham, North Carolina or by enrolling in the Business of Hollywood class that takes students to Los Angeles for a week to meet alums working in the field.

Graduates of the Film program will:

  • Express a developed personal, artistic vision
  • Demonstrate technical and aesthetic proficiency in creating films
  • Acquire professional film skills in a collaborative environment
  • Develop an understanding of professional practices in the field of film
  • Demonstrate critical thinking skills and the ability to analyze various historical and cultural contexts in film
     
Sample Courses in the Film Major 
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First Year

Video Production
Art of Editing
Art of Cinema
Art of Sound
Perception of Time
Writing for Film

Second Year

Cinematography
Introduction to Documentary
Directing Actors for the Screen
Sound Design
History of Narrative Cinema I and II
Color for the Lens or Interactivity

Third Year

Junior Production Workshop
Advanced Documentary
Film Forum (Special Topics)
Narrative Production
Experimental Film
World Cinema

Fourth Year

Senior Film Thesis I/II
Internship
Independent Strategies

Explore the Full Film Curriculum

Faculty Spotlight

In the University of the Arts' Film program, you'll learn about every aspect of the business from active professional filmmakers, including an Oscar nominee and recipients of the National Endowment for the Arts, Guggenheim and Pew Foundation fellowships, whose work has been screened on PBS, at the Whitney Museum of American Art and at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and in festivals around the world.

Wendy Weinberg
Wendy Weinberg

Oscar-nominated filmmaker
Michael Attie Headshot Film Faculty
Michael Attie

Film (BFA)
Sundance Documentary Film Program Fellow
Headshot of Chris Mason Johnson
Chris Mason Johnson

Film (BFA)
Most recent film as writer-director a New York Times Critics Pick

Student Spotlight

A boy in a red beanie looks through a camera lens.
Jesse Derocco

BFA '21

Film (BFA)
A girl wears a magenta headpand and pink blush.
Xenia Matthews

BFA '21

Film (BFA)
Black and white image of a smiling girl with bangs
Andjela Preradovic

BFA '21

Film (BFA)
Side view of a boy looking through binoculars at a body of water.
Lucky Marvel

BFA '22

Film (BFA)
A boy with brown hair smiles.
Dennis Tobin

BFA '22

Film (BFA)
Close up of boy with dots drawn on arms and face. Hands are placed with palms facing outward next to face.
Daniel Rosendale

BFA '23

Film (BFA)

Alumni Spotlight

Caitlin Riggsbee headshot
Caitlin Riggsbee

BFA '17

Film (BFA)
Research associate for company that produces PBS show 'Finding Your Roots'
Vanessa Martino headshot
Vanessa Martino

BFA '14

Film (BFA)
Editor; post-production assistant on HBO series 'Vinyl'
Andrew Wheeler adjusting film camera on location
Andrew Wheeler

BFA '01

Film (BFA)
Director of Photography on feature films, commercials, music videos (Bruno Mars, Arianna Grande, Childish Gambino)

Here are a few movies, TV shows, video games, and music videos our alumni have worked on.

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Center for Immersive Media

UArts’ new Center for Immersive Media (CIM) is a 5,600-square-foot facility dedicated to exploring the fields of virtual and mixed reality, performance motion-capture, and human-computer interaction.

Learn More

The space includes

  • Optical motion capture system for full body performance capture and location-based VR applications;
  • A four-channel audio system, multiple video projectors and lighting, as well as a control station; 
  • 16-station computing classroom with PCs optimized for real-time graphics rendering; and 
  • Two large project rooms with ceiling grids for development of installations and virtual environments.

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