This is your
Des Moines-Ames Classroom

Real filmmaking education. Real film industry connections.
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Visit a Film Production Company
In Des Moines-Ames

Get started with a tour of one of our Iowa apprenticeship/externship locations. Or call us for more information at 800-295-4433


  • Personal Details
  • More Info
  • Tuition

Contact Information

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Note: If you are serious about learning real-world audio production the way we teach it, answer the following questions to expedite your admissions process.

Note: If you are serious about learning real-world radio production the way we teach it, answer the following questions to expedite your admissions process.

Note: If you are serious about learning real-world film production the way we teach it, answer the following questions to expedite your admissions process.

Note: If you are serious about learning real-world culinary skills the way we teach it, answer the following questions to expedite your admissions process.

Which of the following do you have experience with?

What large city is closest to where you live? (Or, which city do you live in?)

Are you willing to go there twice a week for six months?

Tuition

How do you plan on paying for your tuition?
*When paid in full, tuition will receive a $2000 reduction, bringing the program’s total tuition of $12,200 to $10,200 not including administrative fees.

Are you a member or veteran of the military?


What are your goals?


* Not all programs are available in every state. Consult an Admissions Representative to learn more.

Programs

In the Film Connection for Film Production & Editing program, you will study directing, producing and screenwriting inside a real film production company in your city as you develop your movie idea with a professional filmmaker. Then, upon meeting the necessary requirements, you will be given the opportunity to fly to Los Angeles or New York and pitch your film idea to an executive who could buy or get your movie made.

Film Production & Editing Details

In the Film Connection for Cinematography program, you will learn the techniques involved in capturing a moving image and will start to develop “the eye of the DP.” The cinematographer is literally the set ‘magician.’ DPs are responsible for the technological wizardry required to get the needed shots and to shape light to achieve the director’s desired artistic effect.

Cinematography Details

Workshops

The screenwriter is the person who creates, takes, or adapts an idea and formulates a screenplay. Without the writer, there would be no movie. Period. He or she is the starting gate. He or she is the person who gets the ball rolling down the hill.
 
In the Film Connection for Screenwriting workshop, you will learn the elements that make for a “Killer Script” by developing and writing your own feature length screenplay under the direction and mentorship of a working professional screenwriter.

Screenwriting Details

In many ways the film editor is the most misunderstood of all film professionals. Often considered just a film technician, a good editor is so much more than that. He or she is also a qualified storyteller of the highest order.
 
In the Film Connection for Film Editing workshop, you will develop your knowledge of storytelling and screenplay structure as the foundational blueprint of a film. You will also develop your technical understanding of editing as an apprentice (extern) to a professional editor in a post-production facility.

Film Editing Details

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Des Moines-Ames

Film Connection Locations

Our "Near Me" Des Moines-Ames Filmmaker Locations

  • Beaverdale
  • Meredith
  • Magnolia Park
  • Drake
  • Capitol East
  • Sterling Trace
  • Laurel Hill
  • East Village
  • Jordan Park
  • South Park
  • Allenview
  • Tullamore Glenn
  • Helena
  • Northridge
  • Edwards
  • Marquisville
  • Pleasant Hill
  • West Des Moines
  • Urbandale
  • Ankeny
  • Elkhart
  • Cambridge
  • Huxley
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An Immersive
Film Education

From directing to producing to editing and screenwriting, our externship-based, mentor-taught programs avoid the unnecessary costs and unrelated requirements of ordinary film schools and programs. Work directly with an accomplished industry filmmaker at a fully-equipped film production company.

Tuition
Comparison

Film Connection’s mentor styled education is a cost-effective approach to hands-on, curriculum backed education in film production and editing and cinematography.

 

Learn More About Tuition

 

View BBB A+ Rating for Film Connection Film Institute
$12,200 Tuition
$0* Loan Interest

Trade
School

$44,000 Tuition
$61,000 Loan Interest

2-Year
Junior College

$22,000 Tuition
$20,500 Loan Interest

4-Year
Traditional College

$88,000 Tuition
$122,000 Loan Interest

Average Accrued Interest Charges
Sources: Sallie Mae student loan calculator - Nerd Wallet - Best Value Schools - Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

About Our Des Moines-Ames Film School Alternative

Our fully-immersive curriculum
covers all of the following:

Building Relationships

Learn filmmaking in the real world with the Film Connection’s mentored externship-based approach. We make building relationships an integral part of what we do.

Hardware and Equipment

Film Connection mentors work in the real world where the competition is fierce and having the right gear matters. As an extern you have access to the latest hardware and tools of the trade.

On-Set Etiquette

Knowing how to handle yourself on the set is a prerequisite for any successful career in filmmaking. Your mentor will guide you through proper etiquette during real film shoots.

Making Movies

We believe the whole point of going to any film school or program should be to learn how to make movies—especially YOUR movie. Our curriculum is designed around this concept, from start to finish.

What is the Next Step?

We get it. This isn’t your normal four-year college or trade school program. We’re different, even innovative and you need to understand more before you apply. Here’s how you can get more info:


Request Information Externship Location Call Admissions

Meet our Mentors

Why learn from teachers when you can learn from the professionals?

Steven Schott Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Steven Schott Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Credits: Jeff Foxworthy Show, The Lost Calendar, The Final Season Request an Invitation

Daniel Sollinger Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Daniel Sollinger Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Producer: The Alphabet Killer, Six Ways to Sunday, Alone in the Dark II, In My Sleep, Girls Against Boys, Deadliest Warrior, Age of Kali Request an Invitation

Joe Van Wie Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Joe Van Wie Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Following a spirited and notorious adolescence in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Joe did a stretch at New York University and ended up spending nearly a decade as an accomplished part of the New York City’s lively film and TV industry. During this time, he racked up credits ranging from producing feature films premiering at international film festivals to directing and producing content for a variety of national cable television networks. His most recent film is the locally-shot award-winning feature Forged. Joe is an active board member on the boards of Dress for Success, The Scranton Club and the American Advertising Federation of NEPA. Joe is also a member of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the American Association of Political Consultants, and two time Pollie award winner. Request an Invitation

John Lux Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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John Lux Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

John Lux is the Chief Operating Officer for the IDEAS media and experience design company, which employs film program graduates nationwide. The projects his company handles stretch from Florida, to Europe, and as far as Shangai, China. Request an Invitation

Rebecca Ramon Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Rebecca Ramon Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Rebecca Ramon hails from Battle Creek, MI and is a proud Midwestern girl. She believes that’s exactly what keeps her down to earth and youthful. With a BA in Broadcasting & Cable production from Western Michigan University, and an MFA in Film Production from Chapman University, one of the top ten film schools in the nation, she’s definitely standing on her own two feet. Not only does Rebecca have a formal education, her mentor for post production was Paul Seydor, a member of ACE; the honorary society of motion picture editors. Paul edited movies such as “White Men Can’t Jump” and “This Christmas”. In other words, she has learned from the best, and has over ten years of experience, which ranges from pre-production to post-production in several mediums. Most importantly, she has the passion to share her knowledge as a mentor. Request an Invitation

Tabitha Hartbauer Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Tabitha Hartbauer Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

The BSP editing facility sets the standard for editing in Colorado. Three video edit suites utilize “Premiere Pro CS6”, “Final Cut Pro” and “DaVinci” and project Panasonic High Definition 1080p images on to 110” Stewart Screens. Request an Invitation

Jason Hewitt Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Jason Hewitt Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Odd Thomas, 13 Sins, Blood Out, Left Behind, Season of the Witch, Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever, The Outsider Request an Invitation

Steve Riach Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Steve Riach Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Steve is an award winning producer, director and writer of over 250 films, documentaries, television shows and home video properties, including specials from the Olympics, Super Bowls, World Series, NBA and NCAA Championships, and college football bowl games. Request an Invitation

Avery Williams Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Avery Williams Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Avery O. Williams works steadily in both the film and theater worlds. He is the co-writer of the feature film Directing Eddie starring Valerie Perrine and Jade Barrymore, directed by Lawrence Kaldor which premiered at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival and was voted Best Comedy at the 2001 New York International Independent Film & Video Festival. He wrote and directed the industrial film for the City of Atalanta entitled Surviving Domestic Violence and he wrote and co-produced the film short The Willie Witch Projects, which was showcased at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival and is distributed by Trimark Pictures in their compilation entitled The Bogus Witch Project. Other short subject screenplays that have been made into films include Notes In A Minor Key, The Willie Witch Projects and The Chocolate Factory, Part 1. Request an Invitation

Harry Findysz Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Harry Findysz Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

“The Film Connection Program uses real world people to mentor real world jobs.” -Harry Findysz, Tucson, Arizona, Southern Arizona Video Productions Producer of Live Television, Music Videos, Documentaries, Winner of Ashbury Best Music Documentary 2016 Linda Chorney The Cantina Request an Invitation

Greg Freeman Des Moines-Ames Mentor

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Greg Freeman Des Moines-Ames Mentor

Background

Greg Freeman is an award-winning Director of Photography with nearly two decades in news, sports, entertainment, special programming, documentaries, and commercials. Greg has directed projects for nearly every major television network including ABC, Discovery, ESPN, HBO, HGTV, NBC, PBS, and more. Request an Invitation

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Des Moines-Ames News

Why Manners Matter in Music, Film, and TV

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Want to Know if Film is for You? Make a Microshort!

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Great Movies about Moviemaking

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For The Love Of…Lists

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Five Scientific Discoveries That Need to be Movies

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Filmmaker Daytrips: LA Film Locations

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Truffaut: A Brief History

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Five Romantic Movies Nearly Everyone Will Love

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The Film Scene in Des Moines-Ames

The Des Moines-Ames, Iowa Film Connection Film School Alternative

Wonder of wonders, could it be? A film school in Des Moines and Ames? Oh yes, there is. We set you up with a working film Mentor who helps you learn the hands-on skills of filmmaking. And you get to make all sorts of connections with major Hollywood players all from the comfort of your own home. Film Connection. Doing the impossible. To APPLY for our Des Moines-Ames Film School, click here. Located in central Iowa, Des Moines is the state capital of Iowa, as well as its largest city–hosting a population of nearly 200,000 people in a greater metropolitan area of over half a million. About a half hour to the north, Ames is home to around 57,000 people. Together, the two cities anchor a media market that encompasses 35 counties in central Iowa. The Des Moines-Ames area is home to several film or television production companies, and sees quite a bit of film activity; additionally, it is within driving range of other metropolitan areas such as Kansas City, St. Louis and the Quad Cities area, making it a good central hub for location filmmaking. If you are considering a career in filmmaking as a film director, film producer, film editor, or cameraman, FILM CONNECTION can help you tap into the resources available in this area so you don't have to relocate somewhere else.    The Des Moines-Ames area and surrounding locales have played host to numerous major film productions, which include The Experiment, Dead Awake, Peacock, Field of Dreams, and Twister, just to name a few. Iowa State University in Ames was one of the film sites for the oft-mentioned 2008 documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed starring Ben Stein. The Des Moines-Ames area has also seen its share of television filming, including episodes of Cops, The Biggest Loser and others.   As you can see, the current filmmaking landscape of this area makes it a surprising choice for aspiring film students–and FILM CONNECTION can put you right in the middle of it by hooking you up with a working professional in the Des Moines-Ames film or television industry. This person will serve as your mentor/instructor during our six-month program, giving you valuable hands-on experience and helping you make valuable connections.  No wonder 70 percent of our graduates find permanent jobs in the industry. You could be next! Enroll in Des Moines-Ames FILM CONNECTION's film school alternative today. To APPLY click here.
Connections Matter

Learn From Industry Pros

The Film Connection film school alternative is endorsed by filmmakers who are making movies, maybe even the movies you love.

Professionals in the film business—including famous producers, screenwriters and directors—endorse Film Connection’s programs for one simple reason: they know our immersive hands-on method works.

Mark Kohn

Marc is an accomplished executive with a consistent record of managing costs, measuring progress with metrics and creating operational efficiencies. He’s a thoughtful and enthusiastic professional possessing the ability to create a vision, gain executive alignment and effectively lead dynamic high performance teams for success.

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Jason Hewitt

Jason Hewitt, a native of Louisiana, left the technology industry to join the film and television industry. Hewitt was an early mover in the Internet economy, founding the website creation and marketing management company Planet Symphony in 1994.

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David Fuhrer

David’s stage and studio clients include: Bravo, “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”, Sex & The City, American Cancer Society, Clairol, Law & Order – Criminal Intent, Amazon, Verizon, VH1, The History Channel, MTV, Director’s Guild of America and many many more.

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ICM Partners

and RRF have donated to the Hide & Seek Foundation’s SOAR (Support of Accelerated Research).

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Carl Millender

Carl Millender born in Shreveport, Louisiana on March 5, 1970 is a pioneer in the film and television industry. In 1990 Carl Millender became a cultural consultant for NBC’s new programs, including “The Fresh Prince of Bel-air”, “Seinfeld”…

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Brian Glazen

Equal parts MacGyver, Steven Spielberg and Gandhi, Brian has ideas. Ideas about marketing, ideas about communication and ideas about fixing just about anything that might be broken. When he’s not sharing his ideas with clients you can usually find him fixing things at his own home or eagerly searching for things that may need fixing…

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Sam Borowski

“Film Connection truly is the ‘Film School of Hard Knocks.’ It helps new students to gain experience and network and teaches one thing I always preach to young filmmakers: practicality. It gives new students and would-be filmmakers, writers and editors, a chance to connect personally with their mentors.”

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Alex Keledjian

Producer of Project Greenlight

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Richard Berg

Richard Berg is an Art Director’s Guild and Emmy nominated Production Designer. He is responsible for the Production Design of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, Eleventh Hour, Miami Medical, Chase and Modern Family. Berg is also an architect.

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Jeff Kushon

Great program. I’m proud to be a part of it.” Jeff has worked on over 200 film sets and has been a Set Decorator on hit movies, “Dude Where’s My Car”, “Nurse Betty”, “Blade 2”, “Beautiful”, “She’s All That” as well as TV shows “Modern Family”, “Trust Me” and “Miami Medical”.

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Luis Estrada

“Our first apprentice (extern) in this program was put right in the middle of the action and it was amazing how he was able to learn by doing. This Film Connection is great for people with a sincere interest in this field. Our apprentice (extern) turned out to be a reliable resource and we hope […]

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Matt Pellowski

“Being paired with working professionals and established companies allows up-and-coming artists to learn on the job, introduces them to the realities of film production, and helps them acquire the tools needed to become successful. Two of our current staff are graduates of the Film Connection.”

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