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The 10 Best Academic Programs for Documentary Filmmakers

By Seamus Harte

The 10 Best Academic Programs for Documentary Filmmakers. That is the title of the article I stumbled upon surfing the web for a graduate program that provided a Master’s Degree in Documentary Filmmaking. That is also where I found Digital Media Academy’s Documentary Filmmaking Camp. It was sitting in between Stanford University’s Documentary Film Department and UC  Berkeley’s School of Journalism (two schools you may have heard of). Of course Duke, University of Florida, NYU, and George Washington were some other schools tossed in the mix.

Now, we aren’t offering a Master’s Degree to attend our filmmaking camps, but we are offering top notch instruction. The article highlighted Digital Media Academy’s ability to provide a “quick but comprehensive taste of the craft.”

Maybe you graduated high school and you’re thinking about attending a 4 year college to pursue a career of movie making, perhaps you should check out this camp and get a head start on making your passion your career.

Perhaps you are looking to change careers but nervous about diving right into a school.

Or maybe you are a filmmaker and you are just looking to sharpen your tools.

Why spend your time and money with big schools and uncertainty when you can attend a Digital Media Academy camp and discover what new path you want to head down.

Check out the rest of the article here:

Check out the Digital Media Academy Documentary Filmmaking Camp here:

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posted by DMA Jordan in News Blog and have No Comments

Documentary Filmmaking : Learn How to Make a Documentary Film

My name is Matthew Levie, and I’ll be teaching Documentary Filmmaking again this summer. I’m a professional editor, and feel free to browse my web site to see what I do.

Last year’s Documentary Filmmaking class was a fantastic experience for me as a teacher. The students included:

• a businesswoman from Boston,
• a sociologist from Japan,
• a teenager from France,
• a flight attendant from Miami,
• a scientist from Texas,
• and a teacher from South Carolina

Imagine what you could learn from a group like that!

Here’s a small snippet from the course. Since I’m an editor I can’t resist an example of phenomenal documentary editing. Have a look at the following clip, from the documentary Carrier, about the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWBH0XSp0Ec

So first, one of the pilots introduces the idea that everybody on the carrier needs to do their job correctly, at the right time, for the carrier to function properly. And that sets off this montage of flight deck operations, set to—wait, can it be?—the “March of the Wooden Soldiers” from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker.”

Notice how similar motions are grouped together—there’s a beautiful series of circular motions, for instance. And at the end, somebody declares “it’s like a ballet.” Which makes perfect sense, since the filmmakers have already make that perfectly clear from a visual standpoint! But then they extend the metaphor to other areas of the ship, particularly the people feeding the ship and cleaning it up.

This is actually an important priority of the filmmakers: making the viewers understand that an aircraft carrier isn’t all about the planes and the flight deck, but that there are people greasing the cables and cleaning the toilets as well. And they’ve done a great job of conveying that visually at every opportunity.

Want more? Well, you’ll have to come to Stanford. Not a lot of people regret spending a week in Northern California, and I’m sure you’ll learn a tremendous amount and enjoy yourself as well!

Browse the Documentary Film class syllabus here.

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posted by DMA Jordan in News Blog and have Comment (1)