• Adam Johnson

A Guide for Film Students

Unfortunately, the first episode of the Movie Deep Dive relaunch will be delayed instead of premiering today. However, in return, I wanted to share some tips and tricks I passed on to colleagues of mine when they entered the fantastic world of film school. Maybe some of y'all will take something away from it, even in different fields!

Find out the professors your colleagues recommend, and find out the must-take classes (within your academic journey, of course).

Classes like American Film Artist, Motion Picture Genre, and International Cinema, where you explore one specific and narrow thing (e.g. noir, musicals, David Lynch, Stanley Kubrick) are actually really cool.

It’s also really cool if you can take a course with someone who teaches their jam. When a filmmaker teaches their passion, it's something really special.

Also, going the extra mile is rewarded.

Volunteer when no one else will.

Meet people, get experience, and expand your worldview with the various film clubs.

If a professor or colleague presents an opportunity, take it! I wouldn’t know I’d make a great script supervisor if I hadn’t offered to do a breakdown for a professor’s TV pilot, and I’m disappointed I didn’t help a great student make her short film.

Establish relationships with your professors and colleagues. Sit close, visit them, interview them, seek advice, offer your services!

Be open-minded.

Don’t write off a course or professor because of a bad couple of classes. Try to find something about the material or the professor you do like, and don’t dwell on the negatives. There’s always something to learn.

Find ways to go further in your study of a class. Ask for books! Research more avant-garde! Discover what about horror makes you tick! Do optional assignments!

Investigate what biases you really hold—biases not out of ignorance but of knowledge.

Live every day.

Read every day.

Watch every day.

Experience every day.

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