If you want to work in the film industry, there are over 300 four-year colleges and institutions in the United States that offer degrees in film. Since no school is the same, and different schools have their strengths, the ideal option for an emerging filmmaker is to be somewhat different from the finest schools for filmmaking or animations.

The colleges below all have strong cinematic arts programs, as well as extremely successful graduates and a brilliant faculty. Their facilities have followed up with the industry’s rapid technological changes, and the institutions have the valuable network to aid their students to achieve success after college. Many of the top institutions are in or around Los Angeles and New York City, which are two of the country’s most active film and television hubs.

California Institute of the Arts

CalArts was founded by Walt Disney and has a longstanding commitment to excellence in animation. Brenda Chapman, who co-directed Brave, Adrian Molina, who won an Oscar for co-directing Coco, and Tim Burton, the well-known writer, director, producer, and artist, are all alumni of the Institution. The REDCAT, Roy, and Edna Disney CalArts Theater, and Walt Disney Concert Hall are all situated on campus.

CalArts has six schools that provide bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater. Students can choose from over 70-degree programs, including scene design, technical directing, and character animation.

American Film Institute

The American Film Institute Conservatory, or AFI, is consistently ranked at the top of the country’s film schools. The institution offers MFA programs in cinematography, directing, editing, producing, production design, and screenwriting and is located just above Hollywood in Los Angeles. Students collaborate in groups to develop, produce, create, direct, film and edit a variety of films during the two-year curriculum. The application procedure is extremely tough, and a substantial portfolio of creative work is expected for you to be accepted.

The AFI Awards, AFI Fest, and other arts festivals are held on the dynamic campus.

New York University

New York University, located in Greenwich Village, Manhattan, is perfect for students passionate about the arts. The Village is home to a wide range of theaters and performing spaces, in addition to great campus facilities. The Tisch School of the Arts at New York University often ranks among the top five film schools in the country. Billy Crystal, Vince Gilligan, and Martin Scorsese are just a few of the well-known figures on the alumni list, which also includes a long list of famous directors, producers, and creators. Spike Lee earned his MFA from Tisch School of the Arts, where he is now a university professor.

Hundreds of students graduate each year from the undergraduate Film and Television program, and the uni’s commitment to “learning by doing” is much more than a tagline as its students, staff, and instructors generate more than 5,000 films yearly.

Columbia University

Columbia University, a private university in New York, is a member of the elite Ivy League. Columbia has a diverse set of strengths and is considered one of the best colleges in the country. Its School of the Arts regularly ranks among the top ten film schools in the country. MFA degrees in Film, Theatre, Visual Arts, and Writing, and an MA in Film and Media Studies, and an interdisciplinary degree in Sound Art, are all offered at the institution. Columbia’s location on Manhattan’s Upper West Side will appeal to those seeking a cosmopolitan college experience.

Discover other universities that can help you pursue your dream career by checking out other articles here at MSM Unify.