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#1 siddharth diwan

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 01:40 AM

Can some one tell me which are the best film schools in britain and specially for cinematography.
Thanks
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#2 stoop

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 04:56 AM

The National Film School is the best!

I'm going to apply next year to do an MA in cinematography!

Only 7 places availiable though :(
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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 07:23 AM

Hi,

Don't bother; they'll teach you a style of filmmaking that is not widely practiced and then release you onto a job market with no jobs. Much better to spend the time and effort working on your reel - and, inevitably, working on getting a US work permit.

Phil
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#4 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 09:07 AM

they'll teach you a style of filmmaking that is not widely practiced



not quite sure what you mean by this, Phil
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#5 Max Jacoby

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 11:28 AM

Never mind Phil.
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#6 matthew david burton

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 11:37 AM

I've herd that leeds has an award winning maters degree in cinematography !
-matt
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 11:51 AM

Hi,

I think we've been through this before. If you go to film school in the UK, they will teach you filmmaking as it is done in the UK. Or, more to the point, how it is very rarely done in the UK. I don't see the point in spending a lot of time and money - and possibly your one chance at going to college - on preparing for an industry that doesn't exist. Filmmaking is a fringe artform here, not a career - compared to world centres of it, it's barely practiced at a professional level in this country, if at all.

To put it another way, there's not a lot of point in preparing for a career path that doesn't exist. Don't waste your time.

Phil
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#8 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 12:57 PM

Filmmaking is a fringe artform here, not a career - compared to world centres of it, it's barely practiced at a professional level in this country, if at all.


You must be having a bad day Phil, but I don't think that insulting every crew member in Britain is the way to deal with it....

There was a question asked, and I think it deserves an answer, not just another one of your rants about the state of the film industry/film crew vs. video crew/telecine colorists.

The National Film School has an excellent reputation, but is very difficult to get into.
The London International Film School is good but very expensive
Bournemouth Film school has a good rep, as does Newport
The Northern Film School used to be very good, but has gone downhill since it it was split into the NFS in Leeds and the Northern Media School in Sheffield

There are others, but I don't know much about them.
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#9 Martin Amezaga

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 01:24 PM

Hi, I`ve been folowing this post for a while, and after reading Phil Rhode`s opinion on filmmaking education in the UK some questions
came up:

a) Is there any film school in Europe that can give you the training needed for the actual job market?

B) If it is the case wich ones?

c) And last , to Mr. Phil Rhodes. Wich film school do you consdider able to give the tools needed to enter the actual job market?
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#10 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 03:37 PM

Hi,

> Is there any film school in Europe that can give you the training needed for the actual job market?

I haven't read up on all of them, but I would assume not. They're going to teach you filmmaking as it is done wherever they are, and there's only two or three places in the world where you have a reasonable chance of making a living in filmmaking. None of them are in Europe.

> And last , to Mr. Phil Rhodes. Wich film school do you consdider able to give the tools needed to enter the
> actual job market?

Go to the US, Canada or possibly Australia.

And Mr. Brereton, the answer "don't" is possibly the most critcial of all in this situation. As for getting offended, have you ever actually seen how an American set operates? A three-year graduate of a US film school will be vastly more experienced than our best guys here because they work, they don't do it once a month and call it a career. Is it any wonder the general standard of steadicam operating in the UK is so absolutely abysmal? Why all of our TV dramas look so utterly uninspired? You must have noticed people on this very forum saying "Well, I'm just PAing at the moment..." and they consider that a crap job while they find something better! Over here, you're lucky if getting paid as a production assistant is the very pinnacle of your career. I could name someone who's been a minimum-wage (therefore not making any money at all in central London) runner at the BBC for three damn years. Really, having witnessed both, I don't think that people in the UK and the US have any real idea how huge the divide is. The very, very best of our stuff just about reaches the level of a mickey mouse operation by comparison.

Now, if on the basis of this you want to advise someone to spend thousands of pounds and years of his life pursuing a place in this fizzing, vibrant job market, I would call that plainly irresponsible.

Phil
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#11 matthew david burton

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 06:44 PM

Is it any wonder the general standard of steadicam operating in the UK is so absolutely abysmal? Why all of our TV dramas look so utterly uninspired?


Phill thats gota be the most ignorant thing i have read for a long time!
You can hardly blame the steadicam opp's for uninspiring tv dramas can you ?
You have to look at the bigger picture for why damas are poo !

Cheers
-matt

Edited by matthew david burton, 31 October 2005 - 06:49 PM.

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#12 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 06:48 PM

Hi,

> You can hardly blame the steadicam opp's for uninspiring tv dramas can you ?

I wasn't. I was blaming a large majority of UK steadicam operators for being barely competent. I've had the inestimable pleasure of working with some of those who actually know what they're doing. I do know the difference, which is why I don't do it more - I'm not good enough at it, and I recognise that.

The fact that the TV dramas look uninspiring is down to a large number of factors which are rather beyond the scope of this discussion.

Oh, I see, you teach at Ravensbourne. I appreciate you have a keen interest in ensuring the courses are filled, and I'm not sure if you realise that people go up there, train Monday and Tuesday, then start on Emmerdale on Wednesday, but it happens, and that's why there's a problem.

Phil
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#13 Dominic Case

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 07:40 PM

Filmmaking is a fringe artform here, not a career - compared to world centres of it, it's barely practiced at a professional level in this country, if at all.

To put it another way, there's not a lot of point in preparing for a career path that doesn't exist. Don't waste your time.


Phil has been doing this for quite a while. Never talk up your own situation, you will attract others and increase competition for yourself. But I think this time, Phil, you've gone too far.

Here are some reliable statistics comparing the film industry in the UK, the US, and Australia (which Phil recommended people should go to, presumably to remove them from his competition!)

I think they tell a very different story.

Number of feature films produced in 2004 in each country:
USA 611
UK 132
Aust 16

Total investment in film production in 2004 in each country:
USA US$14bn
UK US$1.48bn (ranking third in the world)
Aust US$104m

If you do this as a percentage of GDP, to account for the different sizes of each country, you get
USA 0.13% of GDP is spent on film production
UK 0.097%
Aust 0.020%


Now I know these are just feature films, and I know that some of these might never see the light of day on a cinema screen - but it's a good indicator all the same.

In other words, by all measures, the UK is a major centre of film production.

by the way, the figures are from
The Australian Film Commission, Get The Picture
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#14 matthew david burton

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 08:15 PM

Oh, I see, you teach at Ravensbourne. I appreciate you have a keen interest in ensuring the courses are filled, and I'm not sure if you realise that people go up there, train Monday and Tuesday, then start on Emmerdale on Wednesday, but it happens, and that's why there's a problem.
Phil


Just to set the record straight i don't actually teach at ravensborne yet but thats not the point.
To say that people train Monday and Tuesday, then start on Emmerdale on Wednesday is complete rubish !
Perhaps you can give me an example of this strange accurance ?
I personaly know camera opps on ememrdale who have worked their way up over many years to get to that position and worked dam hard.
I'm not saying emmerdale is any good mind, but i know for a fact it's not the fault of the crew.

-matt

Edited by matthew david burton, 31 October 2005 - 08:18 PM.

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#15 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 31 October 2005 - 09:42 PM

Hi,

> In other words, by all measures, the UK is a major centre of film production.

Oh, really? Try it, please do.

I can only paraphrase the BECTU magazine this month, in which a hypothetical film by a Polish director, a Spanish DP and an Australian crew shot in Prague can claim to be a "British film" for the purposes of tax breaks because bits of Prague are standing in for London.

And for the last time I'm not saying this on my behalf. I do not work in feature film production and I never will; I am not good enough and I have no illusions about it. I just don't want someone to spend two probably very enjoyable years at LFS and then get dumped very rudely back to reality at the end of it with nothing to show for it but a meaningless, unemployable qualification and a lot of debt.

Phil
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#16 matthew david burton

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Posted 01 November 2005 - 12:05 AM

Phill are you actualy saying that masters in cinematography from the LFS is a unemployable qualification ?
your ethier completly mad or as i figure over worked and under payed ?

-matt
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#17 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 01 November 2005 - 12:13 AM

As Stuart correctly said

The National Film School has an excellent reputation, but is very difficult to get into.
The London International Film School is good but very expensive


Poland has Lodz - France has the Ecole Something

But all good film schools are very very difficult to get into

thanks

Rolfe
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#18 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 01 November 2005 - 05:23 AM

As for getting offended, have you ever actually seen how an American set operates? A three-year graduate of a US film school will be vastly more experienced than our best guys here
I don't think that people in the UK and the US have any real idea how huge the divide is. The very, very best of our stuff just about reaches the level of a mickey mouse operation by comparison.


As a matter of fact, Phil, I have. I spent 6 years as an AC on features, TV dramas and commercials. I worked withh DP's and crews from all over the world, and not once did I think to myself "Oh, they're so much better than British crews'. Britain has, for a long time had a deserved reputation for excellent crew. To describe them as Mickey Mouse is offensive and highly inaccurate. Try saying that to Geoff Boyle next time you see him.

I do not work in feature film production and I never will; I am not good enough and I have no illusions about it.


You've just described British crews as 'Mickey Mouse' and yet you're 'not good enough'. What does that say about your level of competence?

Christ, Phil, just how sour are those grapes?
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#19 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 01 November 2005 - 07:24 AM

Hi,

> Phill are you actualy saying that masters in cinematography from the LFS is a unemployable qualification ?

Yes.

If you were to graduate from LFS with this qualification, what would you expect it to get you? I know several LFS MA grads who are doing anything bar film work.

And Mr. Brereton, I'm not saying there's anything wrong with most of the crews - there are good people out there, they're just incredibly rare because there's damn all going on to get experience on. They're so rare that it is indeed barely practiced. I do not move among these people - as far as I'm aware there are about two or three sets of feature film crew in the UK who'd actually be worth considering as professionals and I would be highly presumptuous to count myself among them. Below that level it tails off very quickly to PD-150 junkies of vastly inflated self-opinion. If you've worked in the industry here you know this to be true.

It's also down to funding, the way the TV sector in this country is structured, and the rock-bottom expectations most people have of the industry. Digital TV is having exactly, precisely the effect everyone said it would.

So the fact remains, whether anyone wants to take offence at the implication or not, that a degree from LFS is absolutely and most certainly not going to lead to long-term employment.

Phil
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#20 matthew david burton

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Posted 01 November 2005 - 07:51 AM

If you were to graduate from LFS with this qualification, what would you expect it to get you? I know several LFS MA grads who are doing anything bar film work.


I didn't say that they would be working in film did I ?
However if their good they will be working doing something they love !
Film isn't a money making scheem it's an art form.
It leads to other things - opens doors.

How dare you discurage youg an influential people from persuing their dreams.
Just becuase you or people you know have faild in sertian areas doesn't set a bench mark for everybody else.
Just how long was it before you decided you weren't any good at steadicam ?
Many people would train for 5 years plus before they would even be considered compitent!
Your points are valid but ever so tainted by misadventure.
Stick to what you do best (arguing with pana project managers over file extentions perhaps :).
Kind regards
-Matt

Edited by matthew david burton, 01 November 2005 - 07:57 AM.

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