Degrees | Schools | Careers

Top 10 Film Schools: Rankings of the 10 Best Film Schools

top 10 film schools

A filmmaking career is competitive! Attending one of the top 10 film schools gives you an edge. Discover the ten best film schools, from NYU to USC to Michigan.

Filmmaking is one of the most powerful art forms in existence today.  With the ability to reach millions of people, a film is a superb solution for an artist hoping to communicate an ideology or principle to a large mass of people.  Filmmaking can also be a highly lucrative career.  Unlike some of the more elite art forms like painting or sculpture, filmmaking is highly accessible. 

By giving people direct access to your work and allowing them to feel like they are journeying with you in the film, you give yourself ample opportunity to make a successful living with your art.

Becoming a filmmaker does not necessarily require extensive training or education.  Many successful filmmakers started their careers as stagehands, director’s assistants or even actors. 

However, today the filmmaking industry is more competitive than ever.  By attending an accredited university or education program, you give yourself a “leg up” as you begin your career as a filmmaker.  Choosing one of the best schools in the nation is a great way to set yourself apart from the thousands of other individuals hoping to achieve a career as a well-known filmmaker.

Top 10 Film Schools

The best film schools in the nation offer comprehensive and varied courses that teach a variety of different filming styles and approaches.  Focusing on one type of filmmaking approach, while it may teach you all you need to know about that particular approach, will nevertheless fail to broaden your scope as a filmmaker.  It is important, also, to study the mistakes of historical filmmakers.  Humans can learn as much from what was done wrong as what was done correctly.

Obviously, many of the best film schools are located in either California or New York.  With film studios and television studios on every corner, these states are well-suited to help you find a career as a filmmaker immediately after graduation.  If, however, you cannot afford to travel to a coastal state for your education, there are many other viable opportunities for earning a degree in filmmaking.

10 Best Film Schools

This list is a subjective list compiled by experts and university program reviewers.  These are not the only schools at which you can find an excellent degree in filmmaking.  However, this list can serve as a starting point for an individual searching for a great degree program in filmmaking:

  • New York University: NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts is a highly competitive program that attracts thousands of hopeful filmmakers each year.  The best in the business will be teaching you the art of filmmaking at New York University
  • San Francisco State University: Beautiful San Francisco is a great place to learn the art of filmmaking.  With proximity to Hollywood and other major film studios, SFSU is a great place to find a degree
  • The Art Institutes: With nearly a hundred campuses nationwide, the Art Institutes is a great place to secure a filmmaking degree without having to travel across the country.
  • University of Texas: Texas isn’t just known for its ten gallon hats and Tex-Mex cuisine.  The University of Texas in Austin is in the heart of an artistic community that will fuel your creative spirit
  • Florida University: Florida University has special degrees in both filmmaking and animated film design.  For filmmakers looking for a career with Disney, this school is an excellent choice
  • Ohio University: Ohio University is centrally located in the beautiful Midwest.  With state-of-the-art technological resources and well-educated professors, a degree in filmmaking from OU will look great on a resume
  • University of Southern California: perhaps one of the most popular schools for filmmaking, SoCal University offers great academic programs
  • The Art Academy: specializing in the Arts, The Art Academy is a great choice for a filmmaking degree
  • The American Film Institute Conservatory: this conservatory offers the best in instruction, resources and education for prospective filmmakers.

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