Filmmaking is an artform that is highly regarded around the world. No matter where you go there is a demand for the entertainment which films provide. By traveling to different parts of the world to study filmmaking abroad, you will develop a broader scope of ways in which films are made and distributed. Being a successful filmmaker relies heavily on knowing your audience, and to become an internationally acclaimed filmmaker you must understand the artistic standards and expectations of various cultures. Studying filmmaking abroad is a great first step toward achieving this cultural understanding.
Why Study Filmmaking Abroad
Highly respected film schools and film study abroad programs can be found all over the world, all of which have different benefits to offer depending on the culture of the location. Each culture will offer unique techniques and access to different technology that will broaden your filmmaking abilities. But something that cannot be taught in film school is personal experience. The experiences you acquire subjectively are what will ultimately make for the truest and most meaningful films. Through studying filmmaking abroad you will naturally experience new situations, people, and events that will take you away from your everyday routine and into the creative mindset needed to produce a successful film.
Major feature films are produced on all seven continents, but film got its start in France with the Lumiere brothers and in the United States with Thomas Edison. Since the birth of film, these two countries have continued to strive in producing major films, with the United States producing blockbuster Hollywood hits and France providing the world with the most notable arthouse films. India is the second largest producer of films in the world as the home to bollywood films, and many quality film productions have come from other Asian countries as well as nations in Africa and South America. Below are just three of the top locations to study filmmaking abroad:
England offers numerous opportunities for developing your skill set as a filmmaker and getting your name out into the world. London specifically is an international epicenter for art, and has much to offer within the field of filmmaking. Not only will you learn film production techniques from renowned professors, but the local demand and interest in film will give you the opportunity to have your films recognized by the public. Studying filmmaking in an artistic environment, such as England, is extremely beneficial for the sake of learning from your peers as well as developing real world experience through promoting your projects.
Italy. Italian cinema made a big impact on the world of filmmaking with the emergence of Italian neo-realism. This style of filmmaking makes an attempt to depict reality for what it is by using non professional actors and shooting on location, and it is still very much alive today. Italy is home to a number of international film festivals that will give you the chance to experience and learn from the professionals, or maybe even enter for a chance to screen your film.
United States. As the leading distributor of film in the world, the United States is an excellent place to study filmmaking abroad. Through studying filmmaking at world renowned American film schools, you will gain the credibility to earn yourself a job in the industry. Although America is most notably known for its big budget Hollywood films, there are a number of schools that focus on the production of independent art films too. Whether you are looking to hone your craft as an independent filmmaker or work your way up the Hollywood ladder, studying filmmaking in the United States is a great first step to establishing yourself.
Studying Filmmaking Abroad
When studying filmmaking abroad you will have a number of options for honing in on a specific area of film production. You can choose from a variety of specific filmmaking processes, such as screenwriting, sound production, lighting, or editing. You can also choose to receive a more well rounded education by taking general or specific film production courses, such as documentary film production and fiction film production. Which ever route you choose to take, you will develop an understanding for filming and distribution process of that country.
Production courses will most likely consist of a workshop style format that will allow for hands on demonstrations and peer evaluation of projects. This format is the most beneficial way for developing as a filmmaker, since you will be working directly with the equipment as you learn about it. It’s also beneficial to give and receive constructive criticism with your peers, as it will sharpen your understanding of film and your personal style as a filmmaker.
Before choosing a filmmaking study abroad program, make sure that you check the requirements for applying. Filmmaking courses abroad are open to all majors for most introductory courses, but most upper division courses are only open to film majors with the necessary course prerequisites completed. In addition to taking the required prerequisite courses, some filmmaking study abroad programs will ask for a portfolio or demo reel with your application; a quality reel could be the determining factor in your admission into a program.
- Gain a Unique, Subjective Experience: Through turning your learning experience into an adventure, you open up endless opportunities for creative development. Your whole trip has the chance to become a movie in the future.
- Widen Your Perspective on the Medium as a Whole: Traveling will allow you to learn different cultural approaches to filmmaking and broaden your perception of the industry. You will learn different cultural norms while studying filmmaking abroad, which can help to develop your own personal style as a filmmaker.
- Develop the Confidence and Ability to Travel Overseas for Your Future Career: All great film directors have traveled overseas at one point or another to produce a film. Studying filmmaking abroad gives your audience a new taste for your abilities, and broadens your repertoire as an artist. By studying filmmaking abroad, you will have the experience and know-how to travel overseas in your future career as a filmmaker.