In the six-week digital filmmaking program, students discover how to bring their stories to life on the big screen. From learning how to communicate a vision in a screenplay to shooting and editing, students experience the entire creative and collaborative process of filmmaking, guided by the expertise of the faculty and visiting guest artists. Students use the tools of the trade for hands-on experience in production and post-production.
The digital filmmaking program offers daily instruction and lab time for technical production and postproduction skills. Preparatory classes culminate in location productions. Classes include:
- Production workshop
- Screenwriting survey
- Tech skills
- Film history
Due to the focused nature of the Digital Filmmaking program, students will not have an opportunity to take electives.
Tools and resources: Students may bring their own laptops for practice during their free hours. The MPA program is an all-Apple Macintosh environment using Final Cut Pro for video editing and Final Draft for screenwriting. Students' cameras and laptops will not be used for daily location production or editing motion picture arts projects, but students' equipment allows for individual practice of skills learned in class.
The Motion Picture Arts department is centrally located on Interlochen's campus in the DeRoy Center for Film Studies, the only facility in the country dedicated solely to young filmmakers. View 360-degree virtual tour
Guest filmmakers and an ongoing collaboration with the Traverse City Film Festival bring new learning opportunities to students each year. Past guests of the motion picture arts department include: Janet Leahy, an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer who is now the executive producer of Mad Men; Gordon Radley, former president of George Lucas' Industrial Light & Magic; Vanessa Bayer, cast member of Saturday Night Live; Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Michael Moore; and many others.
How to Apply
PDF file: 1-2 page personal essay detailing your interest in filmmaking and what inspired your application to Interlochen.
AND one of the following three items:
- PDF file: 5-page sample screenplay or fiction short story
- Image files: 10 photo stills
- Video file: Short video/film or animation
Interlochen is also home to the Arts Academy boarding high school, which offers a motion picture arts major for grades 9-12, as well as a post-graduate year.