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What are affordable graduate film schools with a good network?

srishti11

New Member
Hi guys, I am from India.
I'm trying to make an educated decision to apply to film schools. I am interested in a two year MFA program in either cinematography, screenwriting and directing. Schools in NYU and LA are extremely expensive, so is the living cost. There's now way I could afford them even with loans and what not. Are there good schools in other areas (considering other countries too like Canada?) with a good alumni network and connect with the industry. Please help me out here! Thanks.
 

Chris W

Willem was robbed
Staff member
There are definitely some good and more affordable programs out there. In the states UT Austin jumps to mind. If you're interested in Screenwriting their Michener Center is even a FREE program WITH a $6k/year stipend! (But they only admit one or two a year) We did have a forum member get accepted there recently however.

You can also use our film school database as you can sort schools by tuition and read reviews:


Here's a list of film schools between $10 and $20k per year.

Here's a list of film schools under $10k per year.

And here are some film schools that are free. :)

Good luck and welcome to the site!
 
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Leforbusier

Member
University of New Orleans is very affordable. I start this Fall! It is a three year program, though they did just add a screenwriting major this past school year.
 

Leforbusier

Member
distant or in person?

Right now, I am taking 4 courses and 3 of them are online (screenwriting, production, and equipment training) and 1 class (editing) meets one day a week in the library where we can be socially distant on desktop computers. I also work in the Equipment Room and am on campus every day. It is a mix, but it seems to be working for me.

We have our first film shoots this weekend with small groups (3 people) and we are required to be outdoors, wear masks, etc.
 

monstergirl

New Member
Supporter
Hello.

Was wondering if you could post an update on your UNO experience? I guess you are still online? Have you been able to
learn much with the online format? From your post, it appears that you are a TA. How's that going? Also, what type of housing do you have? Cost? As you can see, I am seriously considering attending UNO and any info that you think might
be of assistance would be tremendously appreciated.
 

monstergirl

New Member
Supporter
distant or in person?
Hello.

Was wondering if you could post an update on your UNO experience? I guess you are still online? Have you been able to
learn much with the online format? Also, what type of housing do you have? Cost? As you can see, I am seriously considering attending UNO and any info that you think might
be of assistance would be tremendously appreciated.
 

Leforbusier

Member
Hello.

Was wondering if you could post an update on your UNO experience? I guess you are still online? Have you been able to
learn much with the online format? From your post, it appears that you are a TA. How's that going? Also, what type of housing do you have? Cost? As you can see, I am seriously considering attending UNO and any info that you think might
be of assistance would be tremendously appreciated.
We are still online for most courses. Last semester we had in-person workshops with our class (7 people only, socially distanced, masked) for equipment and lighting training. I work in the equipment room which has moved to a reservation system so only one student is in the room training or testing at a time with the 2 equipment room staff.

This semester (spring 2021) will be the same - 4 courses, all online with the exception of 1 course (Graduate Cinematography) which will have workshops like I mentioned above.

For short films and student films, last semester I was able to film 2 projects myself with a team of 3 people - all masked & socially distanced with the exception of the talent, who only removed their masks when we were recording. I've worked on two thesis films so far and those have bigger crews but everyone is required to get a negative covid test before arriving on set. We also have wireless set-ups for the 1st AC to pull focus and the Director to watch away from the camera person and the actors. This has allowed us to maintain social distancing on set.

I live off-campus (I moved to New Orleans for a job 3 years before applying to UNO and have stayed in that same apartment) and I pay in-state tuition which runs (plus fees) around $5k a semester. Fees will get you. If you are seriously considering UNO or another school, I would consider moving there a year before applying and start working so you can get in-state tuition. Film production has started back up in New Orleans - not as much as it was pre-Covid - but the big shows that are based here are back like Queen of the South and NCIS: New Orleans. There have been a few feature films in the area since Covid as well, but not as many as 2019.

Hope this helps! I know this is long, haha. Feel free to send me a message if you have any questions.
 

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