Apr 282011
short film
by vancouverfilmschool

With the proliferation of television and cable stations and our nations  addiction to ‘all things visual’ especially movies, more and more students are choosing to attend one of the nations Film and Television schools in order to enter the world of entertainment and broadcasting.  As someone who has attended both the NYU and USC film/television programs, I thought I should outline how to make the most of a structured film program to increase your chances of success in the industry after graduation.

Explore Then Specialize

One of the great things about film school is that it gives you the chance to explore different areas of film and television production.  During the first year or two I always advise students to try the unfamiliar and take risks with different roles, styles and techniques.  Perhaps you thought before enrolling you wanted to be a director but after you do the lighting for a film you realize you love cinematography.  Or perhaps you never worked with sound before and find yourself spending hours and hours creating amazing soundscapes for something you or a friend shot.  One thing to be sure you delve into is screenwriting.  While a discipline in itself that is separate from production, being familiar with story and screenplay and tv structure is very important for anyone working in the film or television business.

It is through experimenting that you can see where your natural strengths and weaknesses lie.  Remember, although many people are in film school have dreamed all their lives of being a great Director or Producer, the vast majority of time you must work your way up through the industry by working in a specific area.  Eventually, through various ways you can make the leap to Directing or Producing your own projects.  The ways to go about making that leap is complex enough for many articles so we won’t go into that here, but it is a good idea to have an idea of what kind of position you want after you graduate and hone your skills in school for that specific role while you are still a student.


The Film and Television industries are very social industries.  The vast majority of people in ‘the business’ work with many of the same people over and over again and it is all based on friendships and close working relationships.  Film school is your first opportunity to create a starting network that you will then leverage when out of school to make the leap into the legitimate industry.  Make sure to be involved in as many clubs and go to as many functions as you can.  Make your goal to meet every person in your class, as well as the classes above and below you.  The larger your network of potential contacts and friends then the greater your source will be to find out about jobs in the industry.  Also, it is a good idea to work on as many fellow student films as possible so you can both meet the other students as well is see who the most talented at specific roles are.  This is especially useful if you plan to direct a thesis or do a production after graduation and want to hire friends that are the best at what they do for your production.


Internships can be an incredible resource for the aspiring film and television careerist.  Through internships you can not only get great experience in an area you are interested in, but you can also create great relationships that often lead to your first job out of school.  Also, for those thinking of moving to NY or LA that go to school outside of those areas, an internship with a recognized company is a great thing to have on your resume to stand out from the crowd and land your first gig.  The more specialized your interest and the more specific you can make your internship to ‘shape’ your resume the better.

Thesis/Final Project

Depending on the Film and Television program you are in, you might have the opportunity to do either a Thesis or Final project.  Often this involves Directing, Writing and sometimes Producing your own project along with other students as part of your ‘crew’.  This project can be used for several purposes depending on how well done it is and what format and length it is in.  Some use it as a chance to enter short or if long enough, feature film festivals.  Still others use it as a way of showing off the particular talents that they are good at.  This could be a short film that has very exquisite and complicated lighting scenarios or camera work for those trying to get into cinematography or camera operation.  Or it can be a very well directed or art directed film for those careers.  Just as you kept the ‘big picture’ in mind of what your intention is after graduation, the ‘Final Project’ can be a key part in your ‘portfolio’ to obtain work or a job after graduation.  For more great information about film schools please visit www.USCfilmschool.com

Trailer – www.youtube.com Behind the Scenes – www.youtube.com “Crime doesn’t take a vacation. But we do.” -Created, directed, edited, and visual effects by Michael Ashton for 0. Lazy Teenage Superheroes follows Ty as he tries to get his new “super” friends, Mitch, Cal, and Rick, to put down the video games, get off the couch, and use their powers to help save the world, instead of themselves. www.LazyTeenageSuperheroes.com Cast Joseph Stricker – Ty Ellis Martin – Mitch Sean Patrick McGowan – Rick Federico Rodriguez – Cal Rafael Cebrian – Solario Julian Cihi – Laser Wing/Blood Belt Anne Costner – Mel Crew Michael Ashton – Director, Producer, Writer, VFX – www.ashtonmike.com Sean Conaty- Director of Photography – http Dave Margolius – Prod. Coordinator Danny Cannizarro – VFX – www.dannycannizzaro.net Tom Ashton – Boom Operator Adam Royster – Writer Dan Teicher – Music – http Kyle Long – Prod. Assist. James Myers – Post Consultant

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Apr 192011

Gone are the days when film making was generation based and you could only be a film maker if your generation is into it and you are a son/ daughter of so and so. Now a day the scenario has changed very much with thousands of aspirants taking up film making courses to carve a niche for themselves. Although there are a handful of institutions which proffer professional film making courses, it is always advisable to do some research on the requirements, eligibility criteria and other in sights on the World Wide Web before plunging into this vocation.

One thing is for sure that pursuing such a specialized course may burn holes in your pocket. This can further escalate when other aspects such as accommodation, travel, food charges and study materials are concerned. The equipments associated with such courses are pretty expensive and one needs to be very precise about all the facets of getting admitted into a film making institute. Among other eligibility criterion, it is imperative to submit a short film or clip you shot to the management to make them convinced about your creative skills. Documentaries, short stories and low budget movies are definitely a cost effective alternative but can not compare to the feeling that ensues after a movie is officially declared blockbuster.

Not all are born with traits that define a super moviemaker but one can get acquainted with such attributes by pursuing media courses such as film making courses and film editing courses. The repute of eth film making school is of utmost importance as the superior the stature of the school, the better your prospects at making it big. One can see this course as a way of learning how to tell a story to your audience with a glint of emotion in it. Film Editing courses are also in vogue because an editor is responsible to make the original master piece a more perfect one. In earlier times, editors used to do their chores manually. But with advancement of technologies and advent of avant-garde gadgets and software; everything related to film editing has gone digital. Any one with a strong desire to become a film editor can now take up professional Film editing courses and can gain apt recognizance among the high flying ones.

But one necessitates the traits of high level of craftsmanship and ingenuity to do extremely well in this profession. A film editor has got great responsibilities on his/ her shoulders which is why they are also refereed to as second directors. Their functioning pertains to maintaining a flow in music, rhythm, pace, transition and all that stuff in a movie. This can make all the difference as excellent digital editing will draw more audiences to the movie thereby grossing affluence. One need to research eth expertise and experience of faculties, infrastructure of the film school, intensity of exposure, hands on experience before choosing a right institute to pursue film editing courses. Rest no more and find a right film school to pursue your dreams.

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Feb 102011

Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) June 28, 2006

Apple’s iPod and today’s cutting edge video technology is bringing major film stars directly to consumers in on-demand short films. You can now quickly download a short film and watch your favorite actors in superb sound and clarity. Shorts International has teamed with Apple and iTunes to bring hand picked short films to the fore of this great platform.

“The Death of Salvador Dali” brings the paranoiac, flamboyant Dali into the office and headspace of an unsuspecting Sigmund Freud. When the artist seeks Freud’s assistance to inject madness into his art, tables are turned and student becomes teacher. Through a series of visits by Dali’s friends, enemies, and muse, Freud is unwittingly subjected to chaos, deception, and guns.

The wonderfully sexy “Queen of Burlesque” Dita Von Teese plays Dali’s whip wielding wife Gala. Husband Marilyn Manson was instrumental in convincing Dita to play the role. In an amazing stroke of luck, the perfectly cast Dali is played by his namesake, Salvador Benavides.

Delaney Bishop masterfully creates a time and place of beauty, art, and humor. He first wrote a feature length Dali script while attending NYU film school. It later turned into a short and won Best Screenplay at Hypefest LA. With a Panavision grant, Bishop converted his home into a studio and shot the film entirely on 35mm. The film has gone on to screen at dozens of international film festivals and has won awards for Best Female Performance at the Beverly Hills film festival and Best Cinematography at the Aarhus film festival in Denmark.

Felix Brenner’s original soundtrack beautifully integrates Latin, Classical, and Electronic music to portray the wild and unpredictable Dali. There are romantic motifs with regal melodic passages rendered by piano, guitar, woodwinds and strings. Slightly edgy sections nicely match the films off-the-wall qualities. Brenner’s compositions can be both sumptuous and moody, making for a great listening experience. The soundtrack CD features key dialogue excerpts from the film.

“The surprise hit of the Silver Lake film festival” Entertainment Today, April 2006 cover story.

“Simply Dazzling. One of the best shorts I’ve seen this year, or last for that matter.” Cathy Ross, SXSW festival coordinator.

In an interview in the next issue of “Salvador Dali Collectors Quarterly”, Bishop reveals the likelihood of a feature length Dali movie by creators of the short.

“The Death of Salvador Dali” appears on iTunes alongside shorts featuring John Cleese, Jon Stewart, Gretchen Mol and the Academy Award nominees of 2005.

“The Death of Salvador Dali” is available for download exclusively on iTunes for $ 1.99. Also, look for the ShortsTV iTunes video podcast to see interviews with the filmmakers and star, Salvador Benavides.

The Soundtrack is available for download on iTunes or on CD at CDBaby.com.




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