Marcus and Saya
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Is Film School For You?

Updated September 4th, 2015 @ 11:55 PM
Contributed by: Jimbo
Free Film SchoolIndie Slate ran a great article a few years ago in which low-budget auteur Jeff Burr (Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3, Puppet Master 4) said,"I think film school can be very beneficial to a lot of people. It all depends on expectation and intent. If you are just going to mark time and then use the school's equipment and feel you know it all already, then don't waste your time and money; just make a movie." Jeff attended USC Film School but left partway through the program after making the short film "Divided We Fall". Jeff said about his student experience,"In making the movie, we broke a lot of rules ... and it was apparent that USC wouldn't back another Burr/Meyer epic, so I felt it was time to leave." Jeff went on to direct over 20 feature films. One could argue that leaving film school launched Jeff's career.

At the other end of the spectrum is the sorrow of Wendy Milette. Wendy's bio says she received her Bachelors degree from USC Film School's Critical Studies program (graduating top of her class) and her MFA from USC Film School's Production program. What Wendy's site doesn't tell you (which you can find out from this incredibly detailed blog) is that Wendy was one of the chosen ones at USC. She was the TA for the head of the editing department. She was selected to direct a 581 (i.e. USC funded her film). She was provided every opportunity that USC could afford. After graduation she shot three short films and then closed down her production company (Laguna Cinema).

What conclusion can be drawn from this tale of success and woe?
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