New free National Film & Television School online course at

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Old December 3rd, 2014, 03:26 PM   #1
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New free National Film & Television School online course

Some forum members may remember this audio forum thread from earlier this year in which Richard Gooderick was kind enough to alert us to the excellent free course in Critical Listening for Studio Production from Belfast Queen's University.

FutureLearn has now announced that there will be a course entitled Explore Filmmaking: from Script to Screen starting in February which will be produced by the UK National Film and Television School. NFTS is a well respected institution so definitely worth a look.

The course is 6 weeks long but the "3 hours per week" may prove an underestimate if the Critical Listening Course is anything to go by.
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Old January 26th, 2015, 07:28 AM   #2
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Re: New free National Film & Television School online course

Bump ... this course will start in a week's time, on 2nd February. Here's some details from the website:

About the course

Whether you’re a budding filmmaker or a film fan who wants to understand more about what happens behind-the-scenes, this free online course from the internationally acclaimed National Film and Television School will have something for you.

Over six weeks, our team of award-winning filmmakers will take you through their approach to telling stories, as well as demystifying their own filmmaking specialisms - from writing and directing to cinematography, editing and composing.

Each week your filmmaker host will use examples from their own work as well as the films that have influenced and inspired them:

1 - Introduction: how does a film get from script to screen?
Nik Powell, director of the NFTS and producer of more than 40 films, including The Crying Game, Mona Lisa and Company of Wolves.

2 - Storytelling: what’s the difference between plot and theme?
Destiny Ekharaga, director of Gone Too Far.

3 - Decisions: how to choose budget, schedule, location and kit?
Mike Figgis, director of Leaving Las Vegas, TimeCode and Internal Affairs.

4 - The scene: how does a director make choices on set?
Corin Hardy, director of The Hallow and just announced to direct re-make of The Crow + has directed music videos for artists such as The Prodigy, Olly Murrs and Devlin.

5 - Time and space: how does editing affect meaning?
Justine Wright, editor of Touching the Void, The Iron Lady and Locke.

6 - Sound and music: what is the impact of a film’s soundtrack?
Danny Hambrook, sound designer of Curse of the Were-Rabbit and Le Weekend, production sound mixer on Rush

The NFTS has teamed up with the BFI to offer this course, as part of the BFI Film Academy. The Film Academy provides opportunities for people across the UK to learn more about film industry, and working alongside experienced professionals, get hands-on opportunities, making short films themselves.

Explore Filmmaking also features a number of award-winning short films made by recent graduates of the NFTS, and recommended videos from the BAFTA Guru collection, designed to help people taking their first steps into the film industry.

Please note that some videos in the course contain film clips which you may find offensive or upsetting. Where video material contains violence, sexual references or swearing, you will be given advance warning.

This course will deepen your understanding of the filmmaking process and show you how to take it further – whether making your own short films, thinking about a career, or simply a deeper appreciation of the films you watch in future.

On this course you will have the opportunity to purchase a Statement of Participation.

You can find out how this course was put together in Jon Wardle and Pete Fraser’s post for the FutureLearn blog: “Why creating an online course is just like making a film.”
Promotional video


EDIT: More info from the FutureLearn blog

Jon Wardle and Pete Fraser of the National Film and Television School (NFTS) discuss how they turned a successful BFI Film Academy residential course into an online course for a bigger audience.

When the British Film Institute (BFI) asked us to create a free online course, “Explore Filmmaking: from Script to Screen,” we decided to maximise the potential of our contacts.

For each of the course’s six weeks, we’ve recruited a different host from the industry (who you can meet in the video below). They will lead you through their own specialisms – from screenwriting to direction to editing – using both what inspired them and their own work as case studies.

We’ve also raided the NFTS’s archives, with a short film showcased as part of the learning each week, alongside interviews with the filmmakers.
Putting a real world course online

The online course takes many of its elements from a residential course that we’ve run for the last few years.

When the BFI asked for bids from institutions to host the first UK national “talent campus” for 16-19 year olds who were seeking a career in the film industry, the NFTS jumped at the chance to put something together.

The NFTS has run internationally renowned Masters level courses for 40 years. Our alumni include cinematographer Roger Deakins (nominated 12 times for an Oscar); animators Nik Park (“Wallace and Gromit”) and Mark Baker (“Peppa Pig”); and countless professionals working in every area of the industry.

But until 2013, the NFTS had never run a course for 16-19 year olds – the future generation of the film industry.

We won the bid to run the residential course and are now recruiting our third annual group of 66 young people from all over the UK.

They come to our campus at Beaconsfield, to work together and learn from professionals for a fortnight at Easter, making six short films, which we screen at the South Bank in London.

The success of this course, described as “life changing” by the participants, led to the creation of “Explore Filmmaking,” which takes the masterclass element from the residential course, but adapts it for an online community of all ages worldwide. (more...)

Last edited by Colin McDonald; January 26th, 2015 at 03:11 PM. Reason: Added more
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Old February 2nd, 2015, 12:18 PM   #3
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Re: New free National Film & Television School online course

The first week´s course is online - I would highly recommend it!
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Old February 2nd, 2015, 02:46 PM   #4
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Re: New free National Film & Television School online course

There are many useful links included in the course content, including access to the excellent BAFTA Guru resource website for all participants.
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