BFA Film student shooting takes in the green screen film cage

BFAFilm

Express your identity as a filmmaker and move beyond conventions to break new ground in cinema.

Overview

Join a creative community

As a film major at CCA, you’ll learn to master the fundamentals of filmmaking within a dynamic art school environment. Our program’s interdisciplinary culture, influenced by the college’s collaborative community and range of academic disciplines, challenges you to be creative and thought-provoking in your work. Our program’s world-class group of faculty supports the development of your personal style and encourages you to experiment with new film processes and techniques. You’ll graduate from the BFA Film program ready to forge exciting opportunities within the rapidly shifting landscape of contemporary cinema.

Studios + Shops

Explore a variety of forms

BFA Film student works with teacher to review video takes in green screen film cage

CCA film majors learn how to make a film from start to finish, either independently or as part of a group. You’ll pair practical skills—such as writing, producing, filming, and editing—with comprehensive knowledge of cinema history and theory to inform your creative decisions. Our curriculum is designed to help you think broadly about the medium of film, giving you the freedom to explore a variety of forms in your work, including narrative, experimental, installation art, media art, and documentary.

BFA Film student works on audio and sound correction in post-production film studio

Cutting-edge methods and ideas

Mastering the standard practices and tools of cinema is just the beginning. As students work toward their senior project, they have opportunities to experiment with new processes and techniques. And close collaboration with students from other programs, such as Animation, Photography, and Writing and Literature, help them challenge their own ideas about performance and film.

Senior project and public presentation

The two-semester Senior Projects course combines students’ knowledge of conceptualization, production, editing, distribution, and exhibition. Students create a sample reel, share their work at a senior exhibition, and write an artist statement. Through the process of preparing for a public presentation, they develop a deeper understanding of how their work fits within the larger discourse of contemporary film.

Facilities and resources

Faculty

Award-winning filmmakers and artists

Our faculty are working filmmakers and media artists. Their backgrounds range from directing and cinematography to post-production, sound design, and installation. Rather than guiding students along one preferred path, faculty encourage students to broaden their perspectives, experiment with form, and work outside their comfort zones.

Portrait of chair Ranu Mukherjee

Ranu Mukherjee, Chair of Film

Chair Ranu Mukherjee is an artist who makes hybrid work in moving image, painting, and installation to build new imaginative capacities. She draws inspiration from the histories of collage, Black feminist science fiction, and Indian mythological prints of the late 19th century.

Her solo projects and exhibitions have been presented by the Asian Art Museum, de Young Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, San Jose Museum of Art, Pennsylvania College of Art and Design, Tarble Arts Center, Karachi Biennale, Galerie Barbara Thumm, and Gallery Wendi Norris, her representing gallery. Mukherjee is currently a Lucas Arts Fellow at Montalvo Arts Center (2019–2022) and the recipient of a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2020).

Curriculum

We think with our hands

Learn filmmaking at an art school

Our program covers the fundamental principles of film production, as well as specific areas of film and related audiovisual practices. Focused workshops—such as advanced editing, acting, and immersive media forms—offer intensive, collaborative experiences. Students discover how their individual style fits within the aesthetic, philosophical, and social discourse of contemporary film. View sample courses

Investigate ideas through every dimension

Every undergraduate participates in the First Year Experience. Students explore a wide range of materials and tools over the course of two semesters. Faculty from different disciplines guide studio projects, group critiques, and theoretical discussions, setting students up for success throughout their major coursework.

BFA Film

Core Studio

Drawing 1
3 units
2D, 3D, and 4D
9 units

Film Major Requirements

Film 1: Image and Sound
3 units
Film Language and Form
3 units
Film 2: Production
3 units
Post-Production
3 units
Film Studio (2000 level)
6 units
Film Studio (3000 level)
6 units
Film Studio (2000 or 3000 level)
6 units
Junior Tutorial
3 units
Film 3: Advanced Production
3 units
Senior Project: Film
3 units

Additional Studio Requirements

Interdisciplinary Critique
3 units
Interdisciplinary Studio
3 units
Diversity Studies Studio
3 units
Studio Electives
12 units

Humanities + Sciences Requirements

Writing 1
3 units
Writing 2
3 units
Introduction to the Arts: Antiquity to Early Modern
3 units
Introduction to the Modern Arts
3 units
Foundation in Critical Studies
3 units
Media History: Film Genres and Practices
3 units
Diversity Studies (2000 level)
3 units
Literary and Performing Arts Studies (2000 level)
3 units
Philosophy and Critical Theory (2000 level)
3 units
Social Science/History (2000 level)
3 units
Science/Math (2000 level)
3 units
Visual Studies (2000 level)
3 units
Humanities and Sciences Electives (2000 or 3000 level, at least 6 units must be 3000 level)
12 units

Total 120 units

Careers

Evolve your practice

Students graduate from film school with experience in every aspect of film and video production and are ready to make a lasting impact on contemporary cinema and sound arts. They find opportunities inside and outside the industry, from short documentary and narrative film projects to experimental and multidisciplinary work.

Potential career paths

  • Filmmaker/Director
  • Cinematographer
  • Film editor
  • Screenwriter
  • Visual artist

News + Events

CCA's cinema culture

How to Apply

Express your vision through film

We look for aspiring filmmakers who want to learn all the tools of cinema and who dream about expressing their vision through the moving image. Follow the link below for information on the admissions process, application due dates, scholarships, and more.

Find your creative community at CCA

Apply now