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Summer Courses

 

The Kanbar Department of Undergraduate Film and Television at Tisch School of the Arts offers summer courses to all NYU and visiting undergraduate students. This is an opportunity for departmental majors to take courses to complete degree requirements or other NYU or visiting students to pursue personal interests in various artistic disciplines, including many component areas of film and television production. There are a small number of seats in a limited range of classes that are offered for non-credit.

Visiting students interested in taking courses during the summer should complete the visiting student application.

Production Courses

Sight & Sound: Filmmaking

FMTV-UT 43, Offered 1st and 2nd session

Every student will conceive, produce, direct and edit five short projects (3 silent and 2 with sound) using digital filmmaking technology. Working in crews of four, students will produce a variety of specific assignments in visual storytelling that feature a broad spectrum of technical, aesthetic, craft and logistical problems to be solved. Collaborating with other students through rotating crew positions will be a central focus of all production work. Lectures, labs, critiques, technical seminars, screenings and written production books will be an important component of this class. All student work is screened and discussed in class.

Sight & Sound: Studio

FMTV-UT 51, Offered 1st and 2nd session

The course provides an in-depth exploration of the creative capabilities (technical, logistical, aesthetic) of producing narrative-based studio production work in a multiple camera television studio environment. Students will be trained in working with actors and learning how to connect script and performance to the production of three short studio based projects (each of increasing complexity). Students will have the opportunity to develop a single idea into a full-scale production that will be produced “live” in the studio at the end of the semester.  Some post-production is possible for the final project. Supplementing Sight & Sound: Studio will be the internal companion component, Rehearsal Techniques, where students will learn the theory and practice of directing actors for the screen.  In addition, a series of in-depth lectures, demonstrations and studio exercises will further expose students to the ideas, principles and practices of producing compelling studio-based production work. The fundamental skills learned in this class (script, performance, lighting, camera, art direction, coverage) will serve as a foundation for all narrative, experimental, and documentary-based production work and will be applicable in all intermediate and advanced-level production classes. Note: some casting and rehearsals will need to be undertaken outside of class.

Sight & Sound: Documentary

FMTV-UT 80, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

The course teaches students to look at their world and to develop the ability to create compelling and dramatic stories in which real people are the characters and real life is the plot. Through close study and analysis of feature length and short documentaries, as well as hands on directing, shooting, sound-recording and editing, students rigorously explore the possibilities and the power of non-fiction storytelling for video. The course is a dynamic combination of individual and group production work in which each student will be expected to complete five projects.

Intermediate Production: Short Commercial Forms

FMTV-UT 1246, Offered 1st Session

An intensive production course for students interested in exploring the creative and commercial aspects of producing & directing TV commercials, music videos and branded entertainment. As screen sizes decrease, opportunities have increased for emerging technologies to facilitate the production and distribution of both long and short form film, video and animation based projects. Students produce work that results in a series of final projects to live on a class Vimeo page, and will serve as the basis of their own demo reel.  Each student conceives, pitches and directs 3 main short form projects, varying in length from 30 seconds to 5 minutes. Industry guest speakers visit the class and field trips are taken to NY production facilities.

Prerequisites for Film Students: Must have taken Sight & Sound: Filmmaking (FMTV-UT 43) and Sight & Sound: Studio (FMTV-UT 51) or Sight & Sound: Documentary (FMTV-UT 80). Must have taken Production Safety & Set Protocol (FMTV-UT 101).

Intermediate Experimental Workshop

FMTV-UT 1046, Offered 1st Session

A production course in which students experiment with non-narrative approaches to content, structure, technique, and style. Themes and orientations include many possibilities, such as music, choreography, visual or audio art, investigations of rhythm, color, shape, and line; poetry, fragmentation and collage, abstraction, performance; and subversion of linear narrative and documentary conventions. (Prospective students who wish to direct films are encouraged to obtain a list of proposal guidelines for each section from the professor before the semester begins.) Note: Films produced for Intermediate Experimental Workshop will not be eligible for awards in the First Run Film Festival if they are longer than 15 minutes, including titles. All films produced in Intermediate Experimental Workshop will be screened if entered in the First Run Festival, but those longer than 15 minutes will not be judged.

Prerequisites for Film Students: Sight & Sound: Filmmaking (FMTV-UT 43) AND Sight & Sound: Studio (FMTV-UT 51) OR Sight & Sound: Documentary (FMTV-UT 80).  Must have taken Production Safety & Set Protocol (FMTV-UT 101).

Introduction to Animation Techniques

FMTV-UT 41, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

A beginning production course in which students learn the basic principles of animation, develop visual language, storytelling, observation, and communication skills. A freshman core production selection, but open to students at all levels.  It is the prerequisite for several of the other animation and visual effects courses.   Prior drawing experience is not necessary. The first half of the semester consists of weekly exercises in which students explore various styles and methods of animation including optical toys, stop motion, traditional drawn, and 2D digital animation.  Students will be introduced to programs including Dragon Stop Motion, After Effects, Avid, Flash, and Photoshop.  Various technical topics covered include aspect ratio, frame rates, storyboarding, editing animatics, scanning, working with image sequences, alpha channels, vector vs. raster art, compositing, rendering, using a Cintiq, and shooting stills with DSLR camera.  During the second half of the semester students will complete a 15-30 second animated film with sound.

Scriptwriting Courses

Fundamentals of Dramatic & Visual Writing

FMTV-UT 33, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

Through lecture and recitation, this class is an intensive examination of the short film and the fundamental grammar of dramatic and visual writing.  In the recitation, each student will write and re-write two original screenplays.  The first will be 6-8 pages and the second 12-15 pages.  These scripts may be used in the future for upper-level (intermediate and advanced) core production classes.  In these workshop sessions students will be asked to read each other’s work and give constructive feedback/notes to the writer(s).  The lecture will serve as a forum for a comprehensive examination of the “writer’s toolbox.”  Through the screening of short films and clips from features as well as the reading of short scripts and sections of feature screenplays, we will explore how preeminent screenwriters use the interplay of visual language, structure, and character to create original, compelling, and emotional stories.

Introduction to TV Writing

FMTV-UT 1017, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

This course, aimed at second semester sophomores, is the launch pad of Television Writing in the department. Before taking any other TV writing courses, students must take Introduction To Television Writing. The course will introduce sophomores interested in TV writing to all aspects of what goes into the creation of a script for a TV program. It is also recommended for non-writers who wish to learn the fundamentals of TV writing as preparation for creating shows and working with writers. The course will also prepare students for other TV-writing courses in the departmental Television Progression.  The course is also open to seniors with an interest in television writing who haven’t taken other TV writing courses.

Prerequisite for Film Students:  Fundamentals of Dramatic & Visual Writing (FMTV-UT 33) OR Intro to Dramatic & Visual Writing II (FMTV-UT 32) OR Screenwriting II (FMTV-UT 56).

Preparing the Screenplay

FMTV-UT 1019, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

A screenwriting class in which students will have the opportunity to do the necessary preparatory work before writing a feature length screenplay or long-form television script. The structure of the class will mirror the real world experience of working writers. Students will be asked to come up with an idea for their script, pitch the story, do any needed research, and then proceed to a step-outline and treatment. It is required that this class be taken before taking Developing the Screenplay and/or Adaptation: a Screenwriting Workshop, or Advanced Feature Writing I. Script Analysis is also recommended for students who want to take these courses.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Fundamentals of Dramatic and Visual Writing (FMTV-UT 33) OR Scriptwriting II (FMTV-UT 56, offered in the Summer).

Writing the Short Screenplay

FMTV-UT 1020, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

This workshop is devoted solely to screenplays from 10-20 minutes in length that can be directed in Intermediate or Advanced Production classes. Students are assisted in exploring, developing, and writing appropriate material, from idea to finished script.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Fundamentals of Dramatic and Visual Writing (FMTV-UT 33) OR Scriptwriting II (FMTV-UT 56, offered in the Summer).

Writing the Feature Film

FMTV-UT 35, Offered 1st Session

This intensive workshop takes the student from premise to plot to structure of a feature-length screenplay. How to deploy the main character is a critical element of this course. Students must complete at least a treatment of the full script together with thirty pages of script in order to get credit for this course. 

Prerequisites for Film Students: Fundamentals of Dramatic and Visual Writing (FMTV-UT 33) OR Scriptwriting II (FMTV-UT 56 offered in summer).

Script Analysis

FMTV-UT 1084, Offered 2nd Session

This class is designed to help the students analyze a film script through both viewing and reading of a script. Plot and character development, character dialogue, foreground, background, and story will all be examined. Using feature films, we will highlight these script elements rather than the integrated experience of the script, performance, directing, and editing elements of the film. Assignments include writing coverage.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Fundamentals of Dramatic and Visual Writing (FMTV-UT 33).

Writing for TV: Situation & Sketch Comedy

FMTV-UT 1102, Offered 2nd Session

This course is designed to examine the fundamentals of comedy writing for both late-night TV programming and half-hour situation and sketch comedy.  Students will be taught the language and processes associated with creating comedic situations and storylines, as well as how to pitch ideas and develop a script.  The course begins with a sequence of short writing exercises that may include work done on Key and Peele, The Daily Show, SNL, Jimmy Fallon and Inside Amy Schumer leading to the primary assignment: to write either a spec script for an existing half-our comedy show, or an original pilot script.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Intro to TV Writing (FMTV-UT 1017) or permission from the Area Head.

HISTORY & CRITICISM COURSES

TV Programming & Concepts

FMTV-UT 21, Offered 1st Session

This course examines the evolution of the many program types found on broadcast and cable television and defines the criteria for evaluating idea, story, structure, format and types, performance, and production values. From the study the student proceeds to the creation of program ideas and the development of treatments and presentations.

Language of Film

FMTV-UT 4, Offered 2nd Session

Language of Film is an introduction to the craft, history and theory of filmmaking and film-watching.  The main challenge facing all filmmakers is to show the story: in other words, to visualize the drama.  Over the past century, narrative, experimental and documentary filmmakers have developed a variety of creative strategies and techniques designed to give their audiences compelling, multi-sensorial experiences.  The goal of this class is to explore how filmmakers in different historical and cultural settings have contributed to the evolution of film as a powerful, complex and captivating art form.

History of Animation

FMTV-UT 1144, Offered 2nd Session

A chronological survey of the art and commerce of the animated film internationally over the last 100 years. Designed to expand students' awareness of the origins of a significant 20th-century art form and to acquaint them with a wide variety of practical techniques and styles, from pre-film influences to computer-generated images; from "Golden Age" studio cartoon factories to today's independent avant-garde animator-filmmakers. Designed to expand student aesthetic sensibilities and sharpen critical perceptions about this unique genre.

CRAFT COURSES

Production Safety & Set Protocol

FMTV-UT 101, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

The purpose of this class is to enhance the artistic, collaborative experience of filmmaking by exposing students to the various skill sets and techniques used in film and television productions, and to familiarize them with the industry's standard of best practices. Learning these basic "nuts and bolts" not only enhances safety and productivity, it enhances our artistic purpose. It gives the Director the time he/she needs to get that extra take, or the additional coverage the editor needs to convey the Director's creative vision. Through a series of lectures, assignments, demonstrations, and hands-on exercises, students will become familiar with the many tools used in physical production, with the goal of fostering their creative vision in a safe and healthful workplace that is both professional and productive.

Special Effects Makeup for Film & TV

FMTV-UT 1083, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

This is an introductory level hands-on workshop designed for students wishing to develop their artistry, experienced make-up artists seeking advanced techniques, non-make-up artists just starting out, and anyone who has always wondered “how’d they do that?” This course explores the art of special effects make-up. Topics include anatomical reference; visualizing an effect; lighting for make-up; safety using materials; sculpting, molding and applying silicone prosthetics; designing and creating a creature concept maquette; skin safe molding procedures; creating replica props; “out-of-kit” make-up effects including bruises, black eyes, blood, scabs, scars, wounds, burns, and decayed flesh; creating a latex prosthetic mask. Students receive a make-up kit specially designed with all materials necessary to complete in-class projects. No artistic background required.

Producing for Film

FMTV-UT 1095, Offered 1st and 2nd Session

An examination of the creative, organizational, and managerial roles of the producer in narrative motion pictures. Topics include how a production company is formed, creating and obtaining properties, pitching, financing, budgeting, publicity, marketing, and distribution. The course gives specific attention to the problems in these areas that will be faced by students as future professional producers, directors, production managers, or writers. Students construct a plan for a feature project of their choice, incorporating a creative package, production strategy, and a financing strategy. There will be guest speakers and occasional screenings.

Production Management: Boards & Budgets

FMTV-UT 1296, Offered 1st Session

An introductory course to Professional Production Management that provides the student with the information and practice of managing the making of a feature film or long form television show. Film and television production has many more requirements than simply securing a camera, stock Print_Area actors, and the course will explore those management elements that a filmmaker needs to fulfill in order to shoot and complete. We will examine the structure of the crew and the collaborative responsibilities of crew members, the legal issues of permits, insurance, rights, clearances and permissions; Screen Actors Guild requirements, the management of the production including scheduling, budgeting, transportation, and the production’s responsibilities to cast and crew. We will pay particular attention to professional practice concerning the structure of the workday hours and turn around time and safety issues that are the responsibility of the producer, director, DP and shop steward. The course will explore techniques for on-set casting, location scouting, tech scouts, and read-thrus. Each student will be required to prepare a production book for his or her shoot by the end of class that will include a final marked script, script breakdown pages, shooting schedule, budget, cast, crew and location lists.  The script to work from will be provided by the instructor.

Life Drawing: the Figure

FMTV-UT 1112, Offered 1st Session

This course is designed to train animation students to think visually, and to strengthen their overall drafting and design skills. The focus of the course is drawing humans and animals from live subjects, thereby learning to translate the three-dimensional world into two-dimensional terms. Drafting skills are important to all animators, regardless of their chosen media or focus. In particular, strong drafting skills are essential for character animators. (Can be taken during same semester as Life Drawing Anatomy – emphasis is on drawing in Life Drawing: The Figure, whereas emphasis is on anatomy in Life Drawing: Anatomy.)

Producing for Television

FMTV-UT 1028, Offered 1st Session

This course provides fundamental and practical instruction in the step-by-step realization of a television program. While productions will not be implemented through the class, students will individually serve as executive producers on projects of their own choosing, based on assignments by the instructor (based on student submissions which include news and cultural documentaries, performance and variety shows, and dramatic works). Student producers will engage in a detailed pre-production phase, which covers research, concept, format development, securing of rights and permissions, pitching to networks and studios, contracts and agreements, formation of the production plan, budget development, assembling staff and crew, identifying on-air talent, determining locations, photo and film archive research, refining the shooting schedule and budget plan. Analysis of why some projects succeed and others fail, an overview.

Visual Effects & Compositing

FMTV-UT 1143, Offered 1st Session

A lecture and workshop course exploring the applications and practical creation of 2-D (green screen, color correction, morphing, etc.) and 3-D (CGI, animation, virtual sets, etc.) visual effects. Students will learn the art and technique of illusion, how to manipulate images and elements combining them seamlessly and photo-realistically, and how to use these techniques in their films.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Intro to Animation Techniques (FMTV-UT 41)

Camera I: Principles & Practices of Cinematography

FMTV-UT 1065, Offered Session 1

This course assumes the successful completion of Fundamentals of Sight & Sound Filmmaking. Camera One is an introductory course that explores the basic technical knowledge and skill sets involved with the craft of cinematography. The goal is to acquire basic technical skills in digital and photochemical color theory, electricity, lighting design, exposure, coverage and cinematography science. Students will collectively shoot class exercises rather than work individually as a Director of Photography.  This class is a combination of theory/science and shooting exercises throughout the semester which are interspersed.

Prerequisites for Film Students: Sight & Sound: Filmmaking (FMTV-UT 43) AND completion of 30 credits.

Camera II: Applied Cinematography

FMTV-UT 1066, Offered 1st Session

Designed for the advanced cinematography student. This is a practical application course where students who excel in cinematography have the opportunity to take their theoretical knowledge and apply it to interior lighting and shot design. All students are expected to formulate their own exercises for their shoot day, culminating in a presentation to the class. This class shoots in 35mm motion picture color negative film and the Sony PMW=F5 for 8 weeks. Crew participation and professional attitude are essential to the success of this course.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Camera I (FMTV-UT 1065) or Cinematographer’s Workshop (FMTV-UT 1165).

Introduction to Editing

FMTV-UT 1016, Offered 2nd Session

This is a hands-on course designed to introduce the student to narrative and documentary editing techniques, and to the role of the editor in shaping the final form of film and video productions. Good editing is crucial to the success of every film and video. This class is recommended to students pursuing directing or producing who want a better understanding of how the post-production workflow functions, as well as to any student, from sophomore to senior, who would like to gain a clearer understanding of the role of the editor as an artist, a technician and a collaborator. To achieve this, the class will delve into the methods, objectives, and technical aspects of post-production. It will thoroughly explore two major editing programs (Avid Media Composer and Adobe Premiere Pro) used in today's professional post-production environment, and acquaint the student with every stage of the editing workflow from capture to final output. Students will learn to approach these and other non-linear programs as variations on common themes rather than as completely new and foreign tools. In addition, the class will present examples of edited sequences from both narrative and documentary films for discussion, and have invited guests who will share their experiences in bringing films to completion.  There will also be a course pack of assigned readings. This course allocates as a Craft for Film & TV majors.

Film Marketing & Distribution

FMTV-UT 1093, Offered 2nd Session

This is a specialized course in film marketing and distribution. Students will study two models: studio distribution and independent film distribution. Major studio distribution topics will include devising a release plan and strategy, analyzing grosses and financial elements and creating a advertising and marketing campaign. The independent film portion of the course will cover film festivals, acquisitions, how to create press materials for indie films, understanding distribution deals, shorts and documentaries, and how to work with agents, publicists, attorneys and producer’s reps.

Internet Design

FMTV-UT 1123, Offered 2nd Session

This course focuses on the fundamentals of Web design and production. It will provide students with a basic understanding of HTML and CSS page construction, designing and optimizing graphics for the Web and the basic technical skills necessary for getting the student and his/her site online. This course teaches the students how to create a Website along with utilizing Social Media tools and channels as an effective part of a promotional strategy. YouTube, Vimeo, FaceBook, Twitter, KickStarter and Mobile all offer opportunities. In this age of multiple media sources competing for our attention it is important to maintain a consistent and integrated Communications and Brand Strategy across all media distribution channels.The class examines various creative and technical approaches to image manipulation, design, and montage as well as discussing the production techniques necessary to implement creative concepts. This course deals with many of the unique technical and creative challenges – graphic optimization, video compression, and file format conversion – for putting one’s reel, trailer or film online.The students are taught typographical design principles, including the aesthetics of text style and font faces. The class will explore the creative possibilities of designing layouts and integrating animation and video into their sites. Students are introduced to a variety of Internet, DHTML and multimedia tools and experiment with their creative applications. We focus on the Internet as a promotion and distribution medium for the independent artist and filmmaker. Branding, audience awareness and usability are also emphasized. Fundamental understanding of PhotoShop recommended.

Motion Design & Titles

FMTV-UT 1042, Offered 2nd Session

This class assumes that the student has an understanding of animation and a pre-existing knowledge of Photoshop.  Students will learn the art of titling and compositing using Adobe After Effects software in conjunction with other digital tools. The class will explore the possibilities of utilizing the computer to create compelling motion graphics and compositions. Assignments can include titling or special effects for an existing project or students can create a new project using digital images created in class.

Prerequisite for Film Students: Intro to Animation Techniques (FMTV-UT 41) or permission of the instructor.

3D Computer Animation Workshop

FMTV-UT 1104, Offered 2nd Session

This is an introductory course to the fundamentals of 3D computer animation. Through in-depth discussions and hands-on assignments, students will gain a thorough beginner's understanding of the 3D production process.  Using industry-leading Autodesk Maya running on high-end Mac Pro workstations, students will learn the basics of modeling and proceed through UV layout, texturing, rigging, animation, lighting and final render.  At the end of the class students will have completed a series of exercises that will culminate in a show reel that highlights all they learned.

TV Nation: Inside & Out of the Box

FMTV-UT 1086, Offered 2nd Session

TV Nation: Inside and Out of the Box gives students the opportunity to experience, first hand, how the world of network television works from two points of view: business and creative. Students will gain an understanding of the business aspect through the vantage point of the network executives and programmers. They will also learn the creative process from development to pitching, from the vantage point of writers and producers in the industry. In TV Nation, students will role play the entire process as the key players who put together a season for broadcast and cable networks.

Introduction to Sound Techniques for Transfers

FMTV-UT 1274, Offered 2nd Session

This course provides an intensive one-semester introduction to sound for Film and Video.   The students will have a hands-on opportunity to work on the audio side of the filmmaking process and experience the effect a good sound design can make on the overall quality of the audience experience.  There will be lectures and exercises starting with the most basic elements of recording location dialogue and ambience as well as an introduction to the operation of both the ADR and Foley studios.  Most of the exercises will directly contribute to the completion of a final project that will encompass practical use of all the basic elements of sound design. This class is meant to provide a basic foundation for the student’s future work in the department, both for those who plan to go more deeply into sound with advanced classes here as well as for students wanting to better understand the value of this medium to film and television.