SVA Film & Animation
FILM MAJORS: Directing

The director’s vision is expressed throughout the curriculum, encompassing all aspects of filmmaking, from screenwriting to postproduction.
  • You begin making films starting in your first semester at SVA.
  • You work in collaboration with teams of teachers in an integrated curriculum.
  • You write, rehearse, shoot and edit your ideas throughout the production cycle—working with classmates who will be the cinematographers, editors and writers of the future.
  • You work with accomplished actors from the professional community of New York theater, film and television.

Fourth year, you dedicate to your thesis film—working closely with an advisor on this ambitious project. At the end of the year, your film will premiere on one of the largest screens in NYC, at SVA’s state-of-the-art theater before an audience of friends, family and industry insiders.


Everything that follows at SVA is based on what you learn in this foundation year. As well as being introduced to film history and screenwriting skills, right away you'll be given hands-on experience in preproduction, production and post-production through intensive workshop classes. In each of the disciplines, from acting and writing to cinematography and editing, you’ll be required to demonstrate commitment and energy.
required courses:
AHD-1070 Film History and Criticism
CFD-1020 Introduction to Production I
CFD-1025 Introduction to Production II
CFD-1070 Acting for Filmmakers
CVD-1080 Introduction to Editing: Final Cut Pro
CVD-1130 Introduction to Editing: Adobe Premiere Pro
CFD-1140 Fundamentals of Narrative I
CFD-1145 Fundamentals of Narrative II
HCD-1020 Writing and Literature I
HCD-1025 Writing and Literature II
From the second year, you can choose to specialize in film, video, cinematography, editing, screenwriting or sound. Or you can remain a generalist. During this year, you’ll be introduced to the concept of collaboration as you work with other students in "production crews" on shared projects. You will also learn the essential elements of a well-crafted screenplay, techniques for working with actors, procedures for an orderly, well-planned production, and the structure and rhythm of editing.
required courses:
CFD-2010 Production Workshop I
CFD-2015 Production Workshop II
or CFD-2017 Documentary Workshop I
CFD-2018 Documentary Workshop II
CFD-2020 Editing: Adobe Premiere Pro II
or CVD-2050 Editing: Introduction to Avid
CFD-2050 Sound Production I
CFD-2120 Writing and Directing
CFD-2125 Writing and Directing II
or CFD-2127 The Director's Role
or CFD-2131 Directing Actors
AHD-2068 The Language of Film
or AHD-2070 International Cinema
required courses:
CFD-4010 Career Strategies
CFD-4940 Film Thesis I
CFD-4945 Film Thesis II