Chapman 2019 MFA Television Writing and Producing

yisiling

New Member
So I was interviewed by two screenwriting professors and one directing professor. It went well but not as relaxed as the LMU interview I had last week. I guess the questions felt more on the spot but I also, for whatever reason, felt more nervous which didn’t help my train of thought.

Since we all submitted their 1 – 2 page episode outline instead of an actual writing sample, they asked me questions based on my resume.

Aside from the resume specific questions, they asked:

Why Chapman?

What led you down the path to screenwriting?

What TV shows are you currently watching?

What would you like to write?

What genres?

They then went into telling me about the program. It sounds like we will write and collaborate with the production majors to produce a comedy or drama episode. They stressed how intense it can be, time and workload wise, and wanted to know I can handle it.

(This sounds similar to a lot of AFI interviews I’ve read here so maybe they are leaning towards a program similar to AFI?)

It’s a different feel than LMU for anyone who applied to both. I can see, depending on interest, that some may prefer one to the other.

Thank you for the summery. I hope we could be classmates! I went to their interview tour today. And the tour guide was a first year screenwriting student. From what i learned, the work load was not that intense. She said it's not gonna be more than 15h/week. The facility looks amazing! Their script writing classroom are modeled after a writers room with the round table. And their studios are modled after Warners brother. She also said there are two person dedicated for internship and resume building. It sounds really amazing!
 

WriterK90

Member
I just recieved an email thanking me for my interview and stating that I am now in "Final Review." I'm not sure if that means anything or if it's just a general email, but it said they will contact me over the next several weeks if there's any missing documents, etc. Feels like we are nearing the final stretch!
 

yisiling

New Member
I just recieved an email thanking me for my interview and stating that I am now in "Final Review." I'm not sure if that means anything or if it's just a general email, but it said they will contact me over the next several weeks if there's any missing documents, etc. Feels like we are nearing the final stretch!
Good luck! Do you remember who interviewed you?
 

WriterK90

Member

WriterK90

Member
Professor Duncan and Professor Meyer
oh wait! I just noticed which forum this was. That's for LMU. I do not remember the names of the other three from Chapman. They didn't tell me via email so I only heard it during the interview with my thoughts racing a mile a minute. Sorry!
 

Isabehl

Member
So I was interviewed by two screenwriting professors and one directing professor. It went well but not as relaxed as the LMU interview I had last week. I guess the questions felt more on the spot but I also, for whatever reason, felt more nervous which didn’t help my train of thought.

Since we all submitted their 1 – 2 page episode outline instead of an actual writing sample, they asked me questions based on my resume.

Aside from the resume specific questions, they asked:

Why Chapman?

What led you down the path to screenwriting?

What TV shows are you currently watching?

What would you like to write?

What genres?

They then went into telling me about the program. It sounds like we will write and collaborate with the production majors to produce a comedy or drama episode. They stressed how intense it can be, time and workload wise, and wanted to know I can handle it.

(This sounds similar to a lot of AFI interviews I’ve read here so maybe they are leaning towards a program similar to AFI?)

It’s a different feel than LMU for anyone who applied to both. I can see, depending on interest, that some may prefer one to the other.
Thank you so much for your insight on the interview! I have mine on Tuesday and I know my mind will also be racing a mile a minute, so I appreciate knowing with more certainty what might come my way! (I couldn't believe how thrown I was by the slight difference in how LMU asked their questions, to how I thought they might 😄)

Thank you again, and good luck on the final review!!
 

WriterK90

Member
Thank you so much for your insight on the interview! I have mine on Tuesday and I know my mind will also be racing a mile a minute, so I appreciate knowing with more certainty what might come my way! (I couldn't believe how thrown I was by the slight difference in how LMU asked their questions, to how I thought they might 😄)

Thank you again, and good luck on the final review!!
I just remembered another question. They asked who was my inspiration/idol of sorts. So have someone in mind. Good luck on your interview!
 

Isabehl

Member
I just remembered another question. They asked who was my inspiration/idol of sorts. So have someone in mind. Good luck on your interview!
Thank you! That question would've definitely led to a deer in headlights moment. Always tough for me to pick someone. I'll make sure to have someone though! Thanks again!
 
I'm a film&tv producing program applicant, I know this isn't the right thread but I thought I could share my interview experience.
I was interviewed yesterday with two faculty members (can't remember their names) from the producing department. My interview lasted about 15 minutes just like WriterK90.

I don't know if this is the case for all schools, but I was fairly disappointed that they seemed to have no clue of who I was. They asked me basic questions (am I still in school/ do you have any work experience) that were stated clearly in all my submitted documents (resume and all essays). Out of the short time slot quite a lot of time was spent on irrelevant topics, I don't know how they're supposed to evaluate me based on this interview.

Here are some questions they asked me based on my memory. Hope this helps!
  1. What was my undergrad major
  2. What is the most recent American TV show/movie that I've watched
  3. Have you ever been involved in student production projects
  4. Why do you want to pursue an MFA degree
  5. Do you have any questions for us (They asked me this like 5 times, so make sure you have a list of smart questions to ask)
 

Isabehl

Member
I'm a film&tv producing program applicant, I know this isn't the right thread but I thought I could share my interview experience.
I was interviewed yesterday with two faculty members (can't remember their names) from the producing department. My interview lasted about 15 minutes just like WriterK90.

I don't know if this is the case for all schools, but I was fairly disappointed that they seemed to have no clue of who I was. They asked me basic questions (am I still in school/ do you have any work experience) that were stated clearly in all my submitted documents (resume and all essays). Out of the short time slot quite a lot of time was spent on irrelevant topics, I don't know how they're supposed to evaluate me based on this interview.

Here are some questions they asked me based on my memory. Hope this helps!
  1. What was my undergrad major
  2. What is the most recent American TV show/movie that I've watched
  3. Have you ever been involved in student production projects
  4. Why do you want to pursue an MFA degree
  5. Do you have any questions for us (They asked me this like 5 times, so make sure you have a list of smart questions to ask)
I also had my interview yesterday...not sure if we had the same interviewers.. mine was in the animation building and I think one was a director and the other was a screenwriter & director. They were kind of joking with each other about that so I didn't quite catch what they actually did. Anyway, I had a similar experience - both in that they didn't seem to be familiar with me/my application, and being a little disappointed when I realized that. I know that they must have a lot of interviews to get through, but it left me feeling like there didn't seem to have actually been anything in particular they saw in my application to get me in that room.

They didn't mention any of it and when I told them what I studied as an undergrad they kind of had an "oh, that's right" moment. To be honest I was a little worried they didn't remember which program in particular I was there for either.. The beginning of the interview seemed focused on screenwriting until I mentioned the TV writing/producing program by name in one of my answers. From then on it kind of shifted to include both subjects but I could be totally off on that.

I can't really remember the questions, but the first one was basically "tell us a story. What brought you here? Why Chapman and why this program?" then the rest was a little bit of follow-up comments on that, asking if I've been writing, follow-up questions to what I said there, then asking which TV shows I'm watching, and lastly some info about the school and time for me to ask questions.

Definitely agree that questions you have for them seems to be a big thing and highly agree with coming up with a lot of smart questions. In my case I forgot the questions I prepared and started with such a weak question I'm still kicking myself.

Overall, I also wasn't sure I left there having given them much to evaluate me on for that program. I felt like I prepared for a different interview, which, there was really no way to know what would be asked, but I feel disappointed in how I did. I wish I would've taken the opportunity that first question gave me to really tell them about myself, but I dropped the ball on that and focused more on my goals, not how I personally got to them. I'm sure that was what they were looking for, too, but not the ONLY thing. Who knows, though? Maybe it went better than I think 🤷‍♀️🤞
 

kid_a2

New Member
Anyway, I had a similar experience - both in that they didn't seem to be familiar with me/my application, and being a little disappointed when I realized that. I know that they must have a lot of interviews to get through, but it left me feeling like there didn't seem to have actually been anything in particular they saw in my application to get me in that room.
I didn't interview for the writing program, but rather the directing program. It may vary interviewer to interviewer, but I was caught off guard with how much they recalled specifics from my application and asked specifically about projects submitted for the creative portfolio as well as the writing prompts that were required.

It's kind of funny that I was expecting more of an experience like yours where they hardly recalled me.
 

WriterK90

Member
This sounds pretty spot on with my interview. Mine also started with "tell me a story, why Chapman" which caught me off guard because I couldn't tell if that was two separate questions or one.

They may not have known much about me either. They had my resume pulled up and besides the basic questions, asked a question from it that may have been pulled out of thin air honestly. I definitely felt a little more nervous with them but I can't say I'm disappointed, besides with myself. I kind of wish there were only two interviewers because it would feel more intimate than three. Also they were very far away from the camera and I could tell I was displayed on a huge projector on the wall and that kind of freaked me out. lol
They asked me if I had any questions and I totally blanked. I regret that. I feel that was an important part of the interview.

I'm not sure if they are just going through the motions and they already decided pretty much that the ones they interview will get in, or if it really depended on this interview. It really felt like going through the motions though. I hope I didn't blow it because I definitely wasn't as relaxed as the LMU interview.

I would say I did fine, I just wasn't as prepared as I felt I was for LMU. I'm sure we all did fine because it seems to be the same across the board as far as these interviews went.

Good luck everyone!
 

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