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The Toronto Film School


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#1 Jason Hamilton

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Posted 28 August 2005 - 02:12 AM

i am looking to go to the toronto film school, i'm just wondering if anyone has any info or thoughts about the school.
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#2 Richard Boddington

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Posted 28 August 2005 - 04:28 PM

I worked as a producer for CTV for five years at the main office at 401 and McCowan. Not one single graduate of the Toronto Film School came through the place that I know of.

I worked at TMN for a year also, and I didn't bump into a single Toronto Film School graduate there either.

Nor have I met a grad of this program on any film shoot any place in Southern Ontario.

What does all this mean? Maybe nothing. But this program certainly does not have a high profile nor does it seem to get its graduates well placed in the industry. After sitting through over 100 post sessions at Toronto post houses I've never even heard this place brought up in conversation.

So I'd be cautious if I where you. Look at the jobs advertised in Playback, so many of them ask for a university degree in communications or a related field. The Toronto Film School can't grant you a four year degree.

Let's face it, eating on what you might earn as a guy who works on film sets in TO will be tough. It's very tough now for the pros who have been doing it for years. The TO industry is 100% reliant on US shows shooting in TO, there is no home grown Canadian film industry. As the US dollar continues to crumble, and drive up the Canadian dollar, the work in film in TO crumbles as well.

I say this because you will most likely end up working for a Toronto TV station or cable operation upon graduation from any program. If you can find any job period. You'll be competing against the guys with four year degrees from Ryerson and York.

R,
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#3 Jason Hamilton

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Posted 28 August 2005 - 04:53 PM

the campus is located in the cbc building...don't know if that means anything.
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#4 Richard Boddington

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Posted 28 August 2005 - 08:29 PM

Are you 100% sure about that?

The web site posts the following address:

International Academy of Design & Technology - Toronto
39 John Street
Toronto, ON   M5V 3G6

But there is a picture of the main lobby of the CBC building on their home page, no idea why that is? I find it hard to believe you will attend classes each day at the CBC bldg?

The Toronto Film School is run by the International Academy Of Design at 39 John St. It's most likely that you will attend classes there. Did they actually tell you you will go to the CBC bldg each day?

I tell you one thing it's clear from the pictures of the people on their web site who they are trying to attract. Young people who think it would be "cool" to work in the entertainment industry. So hand over your money. I guess a place like this attracts a lot of tattoo and body pierced types.

R,
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#5 Robert Edge

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Posted 29 August 2005 - 12:17 AM

Jason,

If you look up the International Academy of Design and Technology, you will find that it is a US company with operations in several American cities as well as one operation in Canada, specifically Toronto. The IADT claims to be a first-class school for a whole raft of skills, filmmaking being just one of them. Maybe I didn't look hard enough, but there does not appear to be a central website for this outfit, just individual sites for certain of its locales. It isn't clear whether IADT owns and operates all of its schools or is some kind of franchise operation. Its Toronto Film School site does not contain the kind of information that one would expect from a legitimate college, and on the other hand contains no shortage of puffery and hype. If you call the CBC public relations office in Toronto, I am as certain as I can be that they will tell you that they have nothing to do with this company. From the IADT info that I was able to see on the web in the last few minutes, I wouldn't touch this place with a 100 foot pole. If you haven't already looked at the legit Toronto colleges, check them out. There are some good people at those schools who are genuinely interested in teaching, and who have the commitment to help you get where you want to go.
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#6 Jason Hamilton

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Posted 29 August 2005 - 07:24 PM

would you happen to have a few url's to some of the places you are talking about so i can check them out?


thanks so much for all the information thus far.

Edited by Jason Hamilton, 29 August 2005 - 07:25 PM.

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#7 Franco Capella

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 08:41 AM

As a student at the Toronto Film School, already 9 months into the Film & Television Program, I can say, it's much more then I expected. If you have some free time, visit the school, through the entrence on John and Wellington, and ask for a tour. Check it out for yourself. The School takes up the entire 8th floor of the CBC Building, as well as a porition of the main floor.
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#8 Richard Boddington

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 06:50 PM

So Franco C, tell us where you plan on working once you finish at the Toronto Film School? How will you make a living?

So they are in the CBC building, ok that question has been answered. Renting out the space to the Toronto Film School is I'm sure the only way the other wise useless CBC can make any money. I'm sure it's pretty quiet in there now considering they are on strike!!

R,
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#9 Jason Hamilton

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 09:22 PM

francoc, what kind of equipment do they have and do the teachers have as much experience as they say they do?

any info you could provide me would be great. i'm open minded about what school to go to at the same time i want to learn as much as possible.
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#10 Brian Wells

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 09:42 PM

tell us where you plan on working once you finish at the Toronto Film School?  How will you make a living?

Couldn't the same be asked of any student, at any school, in almost any industry, and with the same response?
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#11 Richard Boddington

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 10:57 PM

"Couldn't the same be asked of any student, at any school, in almost any industry, and with the same response? "

Actually no.

Reasons.....

1) If you go to medical school and graduate you are GUARANTEED a good job at a high rate of pay. Film schools are about as far removed from that scenario as the earth is from Pluto.

2) Why do people attend "cut rate/quickie" film schools? They think they can get further ahead by paying a lot less money and get out in a shorter time. As I mentioned in my first post, I spent six years in the Toronto industry as a working professional and never ONCE bumped into a Toronto Film School grad. So I think any one considering going there should have an idea with regard to their future prospects.

R,
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#12 Robert Edge

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Posted 30 August 2005 - 11:00 PM

The School takes up the entire 8th floor of the CBC Building, as well as a porition of the main floor.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


That isn't the question. The question, which arises from how Jason interpreted the Toronto Film School's web site, is whether the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation is somehow associated with this school. On that subject, I'll repeat what I said earlier. If one calls the CBC public affairs office, I am as certain as I can be that they will say that they have nothing to do with this school. If I'm wrong about that, I'd be happy to be corrected.
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#13 Franco Capella

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 05:37 PM

Alright then. Let's see, starting with Equipment

We have access to a variety of Digital Cameras from Basic PD150s (Term 1 Students), to JVCs, and Sony D-30 Betacams, as well as Cannon XL1's and XL1s. XL2s and HDV cameras are apperantly arriving soon.

On the Film Side, We have access to ARRI SR3 16mm Cameras as well as ARRI BL-3 35mm Cameras which all include complete kits, and a variety of prime and zoom lenses.

Other equipment also avaliable are several dollys, such as doorway dollys, and cricket dollys as well as large amounts of dolly track, each dolly with ground wheels, and speed wheels for track use.

Lighting Equipment consists of Tungsten lights ranging from small ARRI 150W, to 5Ks. Also avaliable are Daylight 5600 HMIs, up to 10K. There are also Kino Flos in singles, banks of 4, both 3200 and 5600 bulbs avaliable. Scrims are avaliable for all light sizes to tone down light intensity. Also avaliable are the use of Skypan lights.

Gripping equiptment consists of your basic grip stands, with standard arms to larger Sky highs. Related gripping equiptment also includes all sizes of Flags, Silks, and whites. There is also a large Green Screen avaliable as well.

In the School, there are 3 Studios, one equiped with a Professional Broadcast Control Room for training in Television Production, with indutstry standard equipment. The second studio features a large white sike for use, and the third is just a large empty studio for any use requested. Studios can be signed out by students during times that classes are not running, as well as signouts lasting a full weekend.

Each studio is equiped with a Lighting grid, as well as a Large power source of up to 250Volts. Power equipment consists of GFI Disconnects, 6 by 70s, and 3 by 20 Defs. Seaway and Joy cables are avaliable for use.

There is a large frieght elevator that has access to the studios, to bring in any off-site constructed sets, or any other materials, as well as take down large amounts of equipment signed out for location shoots.

As a student in the school, Film Stock can be purchased from either Kodak or Fuji at student discounted rates, which I'm sure is avaliable at any other film school.

The school is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so if I wanted to, and have in the past, could spend a night at the school working in an editing suite, un-interrupted. The school relies on student key card access to prevent students from other programs, as well as those not even in the school from gaining access to any program specific equipment.

Another big advantage with the school, which you would problably find at other Film School, is a good source of other programs students to pull from. With an Editing Specific Program, as well as an Audio Production, and Acting Program in the school, you'll be able to find serious students who are willing to work on your production.

One Project I'm working on now as the DoP, will have 2 Audio Students on our crew to perform On set Audio, as well as Post Audio on pro tools suites.

Film Program students have access to the Basic Pro Tools suites, as well as AVID Pro Editing suites and Final Cut Pro HD Stations.

The instructors at the school are highly experienced in the industry, especially the instructor for Film and Film Cameras who has been working in the industry for over 30 years, and has quite possibly the answer to any question I can come up with, so far.

Instructors in other portions of the program such as Audio Design, Editing, Screenwriting and Writing for television, still work in the Industry, and provide a pretty good insight into how to make a living.

One last great advantage to the school, is having access to the schools equipment room up to a year after finishing the program.

As for the schools tie to CBC, its nothing more then the school occupying space in the building, but CBC does grant students discounted prices on access to the CBC Prop house as well as access to Sets.

As for what I personally intend to do, once I complete the program, I have a high interest in working as a Director of Photography. I've jumped onto every Film Production I can in the program as a DoP to continue to advance my skills, as well as work as a Camera Op on several other shoots.

I doubt having a fancy sheet of paper from Ryerson or Sheridan makes a difference if I demonstrate in my reel, that I'm good at what I do. What I plan on doing right now, is to continue work on student short films, as well as independent shorts to start, and advance my skills, as well as continue to build a good reel. Where I'll go from there, I haven't decided.

Edited by FrancoC, 31 August 2005 - 05:38 PM.

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#14 Richard Boddington

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 06:02 PM

"I doubt having a fancy sheet of paper from Ryerson or Sheridan makes a difference if I demonstrate in my reel, that I'm good at what I do."

You're in for a shock. Good luck.

R,
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#15 Jason Hamilton

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 03:04 AM

well i definately have a lot to consider here. for right now i'm going to purchase a dvx100a, teach myself the basics and shoot some work over the next 12 months or so. i will also be investigating the toronto film school, the toronto film college as well as the universities in the area to see what looks best for me. i have a contact in the tv business through my father that i will be discussing all this with as well...basically anything i can do to gain some insight into what is worth doing to learn as much about the film business as well as making films in general i am going to do. any film work i complete will probably be posted on boards like this to get some constructive critiques etc.

i really appreciate all the info guys thank you all very much.

Edited by Jason Hamilton, 01 September 2005 - 03:06 AM.

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#16 shabam

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 01:46 PM

Thank you Richard for proving, once again, that most producers are eletist butts. The vast majority of the people I know working in the film industry have no formal education at all. From what I've seen the industry is based on past experience or connections... in fact many people feel that attending film school is a waste of money all together (Sheridan, Ryerson, Toronto Film School all included).
"Look at the jobs advertised in Playback, so many of them ask for a university degree in communications or a related field. The Toronto Film School can't grant you a four year degree." Hmmmm---that's funny---from what I can see 99 % of the jobs on playback (or any other film related job site) ask for experience---not a piece of paper from any school. I think Franco will be just fine--seems to know what he's talking about (as long he doesn't run into any big headed prick producers like richard)... and good luck with that one!
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#17 Richard Boddington

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 03:12 PM

"Thank you Richard for proving, once again, that most producers are eletist assholes."

Thank-you shabam for once again proving that most students like you have manure for brains and have no idea what you're talking about.

I hope you enjoy flipping burgers once you graduate from what ever school you're at.

R,

PS: If you're going to call some one an "elitist" please learn how to spell it first.
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#18 shabam

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 06:05 PM

oooooh---burn!
I go to Sheridan--thanks for asking!
*cough* what kind of producer has time to make 400+ posts in a web forum? my guess is richard knows all too well how to flip burgers... my guess is CTV laid him off to hire someone that wasn't such a "bourgeois pig" (did I spell that one right richard!!?) oh---and everyone knows that the producer is the dirty parasite of the film industry-so you made the mistake of assuming anyone even cares about your opinion on anything!!

-s
(look i'm a big time producer! I sign my name with just one letter!!)
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#19 Richard Boddington

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 07:11 PM

For your information dumb ass I haven't been at CTV since Feb of 2000. I run my own company and answer to no one, so yes I have the luxury of making as many posts in a web forum as I like.

Unlike you, who will soon be on the street begging cap in hand for any scrap of work that will fall off of the table. I hope you enjoy a life of contract work and temp jobs, because that's all you will get. You'll be living in your parents basement & eating Kraft dinner for many years to come.

Sheridan! Don't make me laugh, what happened? Could not get accepted at a real school?

R,
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#20 shabam

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 07:56 PM

did I say dirty parasite? I meant to say dirty money grubbing parasite! Ohhhh-now I feel bad. Lets make up Richard! What do you say? I'll take you out for ice cream and dancing! I'll even let you hold my hand!

-S
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Visual Products

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Glidecam

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Abel Cine

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Tai Audio

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS