Outstanding Animation Training: University of North Carolina School of the Arts (Winston-Salem, NC)
Outstanding Directing Training: Ringling College of Art and Design (Sarasota, FL)
Accomplished Faculty: University of Miami (Miami, FL)
The motto of UM’s Cinema & Interactive Media Department is “hands-on, early on” and the desire to integrate theory and practice is realized in course offerings like “Television Studies” and “Game Studies,” which Chair and Associate Professor Christina Lane says are designed to “help students analyze popular culture as it unfolds around them.” There to further lend a hand is UM’s film-ready faculty, which includes renowned Hitchcock scholar William Rothman and, as a part-time lecturer, John Wayne biographer and Turner Classic Movies commentator Scott Eyman. UM alumnus director David Nutter (Homeland, Game of Thrones) also continues to support the school through a First Feature Film Fund award. On inclusivity, Lane reports that both the undergrad and MFA programs have a roughly 50/50 gender split, and the department has created a women’s mentoring initiative with participating industry alumni.
Outstanding Animation Training: University of Central Florida (Orlando, FL)
Top-Notch Equipment and Facilities: Savannah College of Art and Design (Savannah, GA)
Internship/Surrounding Opportunities: Florida State University (Tallahassee, FL)
The Torchlight Program for students of FSU’s College of Motion Picture Arts is a unique bridging program between school and industry that offers immersive business training in motion picture financing, marketing, and distribution practices. Located in the school’s Critchfield Hall, which also houses production offices, post facilities and other equipment for students, The Torchlight Program, apart from its coursework, provides internship enrollment possibilities with industry contacts. (Films that Torchlight students have worked on include JCVD, The Cove, Battle in Seattle, and Bright Star.) The MPA’s MFA in Production is similarly immersive, offering professional-grade cam-eras and facilities for student use, as well as collaborations with resident and visiting moviemakers.
Top-Notch Equipment and Facilities: Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge, LA)
With a robust, research-intensive curriculum that includes intriguing 2018 course offerings like “Japanese Horror” and “Noir to Neo-Noir,” as well as a hands-on media technology component, LSU’s Screen Arts program is intended to promote a healthy mixture of theory and applied learning. For the latter, there’s Studio 151, the school’s working communications studio. Among its features are a professional sound recording booth, editing suite, multimedia conference room, equipment room with cameras, tripods, GoPro gear and mini camcorders, and 4K and HD screening capabilities. The studio also hosts an annual short video festival and houses the Screen Arts program’s library of documentary and feature films on DVD.