Very professional editing and cinematography students to work with
Good Value comparing to other programs
Mixed bag of directing, writing and producing fellows.
The writing department has a rigid concept of what's accepted as a Hollywood script
Political correctness taking a toll and driving away good teachers
The project pairing process can often be disastrous
What's AFI best for?
Students who had at least couple years of industry experience. I don't mean running around and shooting shorts with your buddies. Real paying experience working as a filmmaking professional, or you'd be better off spending the time and money addressing the lack of experience, i.e. interning, working with independent crews, rather than coming to AFI. The system is fast paced and rigid. It is designed to churn out industry professionals. If you still soul searching, don't come. If you want to make friends and have a good time, don't come. If you are a politically vocal person, don't come.
You need to have a very narrow mind of focus to reap the benefit of the school, that is to make money being a film professional.
The writing, producing, and directing program have significantly lower quality of candidates than the editing and cinematography program. If you want to attend the first three programs, you need to be a mature person who knows what you want. It's very easy to get into creative disagreements in AFI because its system of pairing people up practically encourages it.
If you are mature, competent, flexible about your work, then AFI is probably the best value of all top-tier schools. It's only two years instead of three. It introduces you to the heart of Hollywood. And most people hang around for at least couple of years after graduation.
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