UCLA - Professional Program in Producing

Degrees Offered
Summer Programs, Short Term Courses
Tuition Range
$5k to $10k
  • Inexpensive, great networking, valuable information, shorter than a full MFA program, shared faculty with MFA program
  • not a degree program, no practical course work (lecture based only)
Please bear in mind this review is specifically for the Professional Producing Program, NOT for a degree-rewarding program.
Professional Programs | UCLA School of TFT

I discovered the PP at UCLA through this forum when I was graduating from undergrad at The University of Michigan. At the time, I was getting my career started in production and Michigan had a tax incentive and I didn't want to miss out on those opportunities while I pursued a full MFA. The PP are only available to students who have completed their undergrad and they are a lecture based, simplified version of their MFA programs. When I attended in 2012, there were three programs; producing, directing, and screenwriting, They have now added others. I attended the Producing Program along with about 25 other students. There is an admissions process which requires transcripts, a statement of purpose and recommendations.

The lecturers were high ranking industry professionals. I cannot go into many details as to who or what was discussed in specifics because they require you not to disseminate the information in the lectures. This is because you are often given information that is proprietary. I can say that their list on their website is truthful and the lecturers were full of information about budgets, pitches, and the whole Hollywood system. You are not allowed to network with the speakers (you cannot ask them for their contact information), but the students often network with each other and many of my class still keep in touch or work together. In 2012, we also had the opportunity to work on a film which was being line produced by the program TA at the time. For some in the class this was their first time on a real film set. It's a great opportunity to learn how a set works from the ground up. The independent film world in particular in LA is very small and this is certainly a way to meet people involved and to gain valuable information.

If you don't get into an MFA program or you simply don't think a master's is for you, this is a great alternative.

From UCLA ...
The following topics are typically covered in the Professional Program in Producing: Production Preparation, Line Producing, Financing, Development, Story, Pitching, Contracts/Negotiations, Clearance/Copyright, Legal Issues for Independent Projects, Television Development, Feature Film Marketing, Television Marketing, Alternative Programming, Theatrical Distribution (Domestic and International), Budgeting, The Television Executive, Alternative Distribution, Producing/Directing for TV, Documentary, Post-Production, Producing for Video Games, Producing for Digital Media (Studio and Indie), Multiplatform Storytelling, Virtual Reality.

At this time there are no required materials for this course. In the event that course materials are needed, they will be supplied by UCLA.