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Film College Choices - Need Help

Joker'sHenchman

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I am a senior in high school looking to go to a film college. I live in Chicago and have look at schools like Columbia College Chicago, but I am also interested in going out to California. I have looked at Columbia College Hollywood out in Cali. I don't have that greatest of grades (24 ACT, 4.0 GPA) but would love to go to USC or UCLA for their respective film programs. For this reason I was also thinking on going to a community college to up the grades and have a better chance of getting into UCLA or USC in a year or two. I know a lot of you are film students and would probably have a lot of good advice for me. I just really want to get into a good school so that I can make a career in Hollywood. Any positive, constructive, educated and helpful advice would be greatly appreciated.
 
Just a warning for ya. Just becasue you go to a great film school doesn't mean you'll get a career. I know a guy who went to USC got to work on Fight club as an intern like many others before him have done. As soon as the flick was wrapped and he was out of college he and many other studnets like him were tossed out. No comapny wants to hire anyone one they just want the cheap no pay intern labor.
Expect to find it to be very hard to make it, and the chance that you'll be poor for years trying to make it.
Oh and one more thing you and hundreds of other people are trying to be the next big thing.
 
Like deathshead said, just because you get into a good college doesn't mean you'll make it.

I'll ass however, that my now room mate and best friend from High School and I now both attend the Savannah College of Art and Design. He originally didn't like what he saw of it, but he came to visit it with me and was absolutely drooling over the equipment that was here. He went to Temple University for his freshman year last year and hated it, but luckily he was planning on transferring down to SCAD this year anyway.

I would definitely look into SCAD, and if you have any questions, PM me and I'll see what answers I can find (I'm in the Performing Arts major, so I know a lot of Film majors).
 
Film school is such a waste of time and money. If you're going to make it in the industry, it'll be because you've got talent - not a degree. Go into a practical field and do filmmaking on the side. If you're worth a hill of beans, you'll get somewhere. If not, at least you're not starving.
 
Hofstra University has a great film program and is located just outside of New York City.

If you can: NYU. USC, UCLA.

But, if not- Hofstra's been cool so far.

And it also depends on where you want to be in the biz as in making it. Do you just want to be a film maker? Or is your interests in writing, marketing, etc. as well? Perhaps television... There are lots of jobs in the industry, may or may never make it to becoming a film maker- but, you can definitely get somewhere I believe. Even if it's managing your own independent local film company that works on very independent films and local projects. So it all depends on your definition of "making it"- do you care about the craft or do you care about the fame and money? Just try to get your hands into EVERYTHING. There's numerous positions, it all just depends on if you care what level of the 'machine' you're a part of.

I've always seen myself as a writer and possible film maker. My screenplay teacher was impressed and said I should move to Cali as soon as school's over, so that's a good sign that something may come from that. And my video teacher was impressed with marketing vids I put together for a contest and said he believed I would have a future in advertising- something I actually never put that much thought into until that day. The reason I say that is because I never considered advertising, but found the contest to be fun (it's for the Promax company) and the video teacher saw potential... so explore all areas of the field, might find skills that you never thought you had until you tried. The more spread out you are in things you can do besides directing, I believe the more chances you'll have at finding a job somewhere.
 
Film school can be risky business.

Just like many degrees, experience in the field is important.
 
FYI Brett Ratner went to Film school. Stephen Spielberg didn't finish school until only a few years ago. Yeah.... film shool don't mean sh**.
 
Well it all depends. Film school can help you get connections, free use of equipment, peer and teacher evaluation and many other useful experiences. You are also open up to more possibilities of fields you may have never even known were out there. So it does mean something.

Not everyone goes to film school or college. Is it a bad thing? Certainly not. It doesn't guarantee anything, but it certainly doesn't hurt either if that's what you're implying. It allows you to have more practice and experience in the field. It also connects you to teachers who were actually out there in the industry.

One of my screenwriting teachers played drums with Adam Sandler on Airheads, then directed a film with Damon Wayons that is now going to get a wider release. Having a connection to someone like this, I'd say that's definitely beneficial to getting somewhere.
 
FYI Brett Ratner went to Film school. Stephen Spielberg didn't finish school until only a few years ago. Yeah.... film shool don't mean sh**.
Yeah thats true. He was hired before he finished.
 
Take the money for school and use it to shoot a film.
 
Screw film school, you need to hook up with a wonderful director and be their assistant...leanr from them and be friends...

Get the connections you need.
 
Well it all depends. Film school can help you get connections, free use of equipment, peer and teacher evaluation and many other useful experiences. You are also open up to more possibilities of fields you may have never even known were out there. So it does mean something.

Exactly. Anyone who disses film school either a) already has connections b) has money or c) doesn't know what they are talking about.

Film school is not something you need, but it is helpful. Like you said...you meet people and have access to expensive equipment.
 

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