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Track 2: Film Production

UCLA Summer Institute - Film Production Video from UCLA Film & TV on Vimeo.

This intensive immersion filmmaking workshop is intended for beginning and intermediate filmmakers of all ages (19+). Students work together on short film projects as they are introduced to the aesthetics, techniques and practices of filmmaking. Students work closely with each other under the direction of UCLA faculty to study directing, cinematography, editing, production and creative collaboration while using UCLA equipment and sound stages.

In the first half of the program, students collaborate on short film exercises and rotate crew positions as director, cinematographer, gaffer, actor and editor. In the second half of the program, the class votes on story ideas pitched by their classmates and then collaborates on the two short film ideas that receive the most votes, culminating in a screening for the finished films at the end of the program in a state-of-the-art-theater.


In the exclusive Summer Institute Symposium, students from all tracks meet and listen to some of Hollywood’s most accomplished professionals. High-wattage guests have included Simon Kinberg (writer-producer, X-Men: First Class, Mr. & Mrs. Smith); Zak Penn (writer, The Incredible Hulk); Chris Gorak (director, The Darkest Hour); John Hegeman (chief marketing officer, New Regency Productions); and many others.

Hollywood & Networking
As part of the Summer Institute, students tour a major Hollywood movie studio. A networking mixer for students and alumni takes place on the last night of the program and the movies from the film production and animation tracks are shown.

This program carries 13 quarter units of UC credit. Students in this track are enrolled in the following classes:

  • FTV 101A Symposium (1)
    In this weekly seminar prominent guests from the industry share their experiences and answer student questions about their career and working in Hollywood today.
  • FTV 122D Film Editing: Overview of History, Technique, and Practice (4)
    This course discusses the practical application of film editing techniques, how they have evolved and continue to evolve. It examines the history of editing, as well as current editing trends, terminology and workflow. Students work in Premiere.
  • FTV 122E Digital Cinematography (4)
    With lectures, screenings and demonstrations, this course is a study of the principles of digital cinematography and discusses how tools and techniques affect visual storytelling process. Topics include formats, aspect ratios, cameras, lenses, special effects, internal menu picture manipulation, lighting, composition, coverage, high definition, digital exhibition, filtration, multiple-camera shooting.
  • FTV 178 Film and Television Production Laboratory (4)
    For the first half of the course, students direct and edit their own short film exercises and help each other on set by rotating crew positions. For the final project, the class votes on short film ideas pitched by their classmates and the two ideas that receive the most votes are green lit for a two-day production. Students who pitched the selected stories go on to serve as screenwriters. Students interested in directing present a director’s pitch and one director per project is selected by class vote. Students are assigned crew positions based on their interests and aptitude. The final project is filmed over two days on a sound stage or at select campus locations. The school provides digital cinema cameras and lighting equipment, access to facilities, and location permits for campus locations. The program culminates in a final screening of the films at the end of the program. Students must provide their own external hard drives.

This track is open to college students and aspiring filmmakers (ages 19+), including international students. Applicants are required to submit a creative writing sample that demonstrates creativity and a strong original voice.

View the program layout for
Film Production - Session A (June 25-August 3, 2018).
Film Production – Session C (August 6-September 14, 2018).

Register Online. In order to secure your spot, a $150 nonrefundable deposit is due upon completion of your application for the program. You may pay by credit or debit card using our secure online credit card form. Your $150 deposit is nonrefundable.

Grades and Transcripts
Program participants will earn units of credit on a letter-grading basis and will be recorded on an official University of California transcript. Please note that official transcripts are not automatically sent to students.

Housing is available in the UCLA Residence Halls for students age 16 and older. You can view the various housing options and rates. You will need UCLA Logon ID and Password in order to access the online housing application.

Contact Us
UCLA Summer Institutes
1332 Murphy Hall
Box 951418
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1418
Tel: (310) 825-4101
Fax: (310) 825-1528
E-mail: institutes@summer.ucla.edu