Is a film degree worth it?
Yes, film school is absolutely worth it. Sure, you can teach yourself a lot from buying a camera and watching classic films…but you’re not going to get the well-rounded education you’d receive in film school, where you’ll take coursework in directing, producing, screenwriting, and acting.
Film school gives you the time and space necessary to create your first films — something you might struggle with if you’re working full-time and attempting to write/direct/produce a movie, all of which are full-time jobs in and of themselves. You may be thinking you’ll power through and do all those things regardless so consider this: film school is where most people create the professional and creative networks that will power them into their first successes as a filmmaker.
Is UCLA a good film school?
UCLA is on our list for a reason. The UCLA film program is one of the most well-known study options in the world simply because it’s one of the best film schools in the world. UCLA students learn from instructors with a reputation in the film industry. They learn their craft on top-notch sound stages with top-of-the-line gear.
The opportunities for mentorship and work experience are also incredible. The school’s proximity to Hollywood means students learn from Emmy and Oscar winners and have a better chance of getting a foot in the door through the connections they make at school and via internships.
In addition to the alumni listed above, famous UCLA graduates include Darren Star, Jack Black, James Dean, and Ben Stiller.
Is a film degree useless?
Anyone who tells you a film degree is useless is either bitter, not living in a major film industry hub, or a combination of both. Fair enough. Film is not an easy industry to break into, which everyone should know going in. A film degree does not guarantee you’ll have a career in the industry.
It can, though, open doors for you. Especially if you earn a degree in a major center of filmmaking (or attend a school that has a Hollywood or New York semester option), you’ll build professional and creative connections that can serve you your whole life. You’ll learn many elements of filmmaking quicker and more in-depth than you’d probably learn on your own. And you’ll get access to filmmaking gear like professional-level camera and editing software to which you might not otherwise have access.
When you’re contemplating getting a film degree, please consider the costs of education, your commitment to your future field, where you want to live, and how soon you need to be raking in a steady salary. Then you’ll know if film school is right for you.