This is your
Hartford Classroom

Real filmmaking education. Real film industry connections.
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Visit a Film Production Company
In Hartford

Get started with a tour of a Connecticut externship location. Or call us for more information at 800-295-4433.


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* 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 extern to a professional editor in a post-production facility.

Film Editing Details

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Hartford

Film Connection Locations

Our "Near Me" Hartford Filmmaker Locations

  • Frog Hollow
  • South End
  • Parkville
  • Asylum Hill
  • South Meadows
  • Blue Hills
  • Barry Square
  • Behind the Rocks
  • South Green
  • West End
  • North Meadows
  • Sheldon Charter Oak
  • West Hartford
  • East Hartford
  • Bloomfield
  • Farmington
  • Wethersfield
  • Newington
  • Manchester
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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 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
$12,750** 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

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

About Our Hartford 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 certificate program should be to learn how to make movies—especially YOUR movie. Our Film Production & Editing 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 requiring coursework not associated with your area of interest. We are a post-secondary institution or trade school that's different in its approach. 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?

Michael Van Orden Hartford Mentor

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Michael Van Orden Hartford Mentor

Background

Credits: Being Doug, Called to Serve, The Washing, Spit

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Albert Dabah Hartford Mentor

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Albert Dabah Hartford Mentor

Background

Albert has been in the video production business for thirty-three years, owning and running Simba Productions in New York City.

Clients: CNN, HBO, Apple

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Bob Kelley Hartford Mentor

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Bob Kelley Hartford Mentor

Background

Clients: Discovery Canada, PBS, UCDavis, Associated Press, Fox News, Blackstone Media, NBC Universal

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Marc Silber Hartford Mentor

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Marc Silber Hartford Mentor

Background

With a background in visual media, director Marc Silber has interviewed scores of entrepreneurs, CEOs and creative professionals over the years. His interview series has received hearty praise and has helped countless business leaders and artists tell their story.

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Craig Roessler Hartford Mentor

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Craig Roessler Hartford Mentor

Background

A film and television studio executive and producer for over twenty years, Craig has directly overseen, managed, and/or produced 25 films and seven network series with budgets totaling over $500 million. 

Craig is known for his project-management skills, having close working relationships with talent and directors, producing big looking, studio-quality content on tight budgets, quickly providing workable solutions for development and production issues, and completing projects on time, on budget.

As Senior Vice President of Production, Programming and Creative Affairs for MGM Television Worldwide Inc., Craig had direct oversight of all content development, and oversaw pre-production, production, post-production, while working with business & legal affairs, marketing, and promotion. His MGM product was nominated for 10 Emmy awards and numerous others including DGA, Golden Globes, PGA and SAG awards. 

He oversaw studio projects such as the series Stargate SG-1, Stargate: Atlantis, Stargate: Universe, Dead Like Me, and The L Word, as well as Showtime Movies Inherit the Wind, Twelve Angry Men, In the Time of the Butterflies, That Championship Season, and Rocky Marciano, which opened the Monte Carlo Film Festival. Craig has worked with a wide range of talent, from well-established actors and directors to breaking new talent. 

Craig grew up in Los Angeles and Colorado, working summers on ranches breaking and training western saddle horses. He attended Columbia University, working his way through school as an actor on NBC’s soap opera “Another World,” while learning production work skills for quick, quality content.

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Kel Thompson Hartford Mentor

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Kel Thompson Hartford Mentor

Background

America’s Production Company was established in 2005 by Kel Thompson who has degrees in photography & advertising from Texas State University. Kel is also a graduate of the Palm Beach Film School. Kel was first published in photography at 17 years old in TX. Kel worked for News24Houston as their first helicopter videographer, before being hired by a major event production company in Florida. Two years later he established America’s Production Company after learning the ropes in photo, video, audio and event production.

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Zef Cota Hartford Mentor

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Zef Cota Hartford Mentor

Background

Alphabet City Films is a film production company based in New York City, NY. We are a collective of writers, directors, producers, cinematographers, and other talented filmmakers. We have created many short films, and recently produced our first feature length film: The Trouble.

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Jim DeGroot Hartford Mentor

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Jim DeGroot Hartford Mentor

Background

Clients: Green Bay Packers, Disney, National Guard, Doritos, ABC World News, Good Morning America, St. Joseph’s Medical Centers, Homeland Security

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Eero Johnson Hartford Mentor

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Eero Johnson Hartford Mentor

Background

“I’m Eero Johnson. I’m a film and video producer living in Bellingham, Washington. For over ten years I’ve been creating commercials, corporate videos, web videos, sales DVD’s, music videos … whatever it takes to get your message to your audience. I have a great group of clients and I love what I do.”

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Chris Varner Hartford Mentor

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Chris Varner Hartford Mentor

Background

In a career spanning nearly 20 years, Chris has worked in almost every facet of video production, from lens to post. His credits include EPK work on “Sleepy Hollow”, “Under The Dome”, “The Longest Ride”, “We’re The Millers”, “Iron Man 3”, “One Tree Hill” and more.

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John Raffo Hartford Mentor

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John Raffo Hartford Mentor

Background

John Raffo started as a photographer in New York before turning his attention to screenwriting. Over the last twenty years he’s worked on a variety of credited and uncredited projects (including, DRAGON, THE BRUCE LEE STORYTHE RELIC, and THE INTERPRETER”). His original screenplay RENKO VEGA AND THE JENNIFER NINE appeared on the 2011 Black List. THE 7TH SWORD is his first story written directly as a graphic novel.

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Hartford News

Should You Storyboard?

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Film Connection student Arronn Lepperman Learns the Craft of Screenwriting

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Location Management: How Camera and Location Departments Work Together

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What Do To When Art Institute Closes

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Looking In Weird Places

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The Upside of Side Projects

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Which Books are Good to Adapt?

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Why Manners Matter in Music, Film, and TV

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The Film Scene in Hartford

The Hartford, Connecticut Film Connection Film School Alternative

Did you know there’s a tremendous film school alternative right here in Hartford? We’re the Hartford Film Connection and we’ve partnered with local filmmakers to give you a taste of what it’s really like to work in film. Our approximately 6-month-long behind-the-scenes track links you up with a working professional in your area who will mentor you in their studios or production houses. At the completion of the program, you can have the experience that most film school grads lack, as well as a number of valuable industry contacts you can work with on future projects.

WANT TO BE A FILM DIRECTOR IN HARTFORD?

Have you always wanted to learn what it takes to be a film director but find yourself forever on the outside looking in? Perhaps you’ve even looked into a few film schools, applied to them or even attended, nevertheless you’re still on the outside and it seems like there’s little hope of getting in and building that future for yourself.

Before you settle for Plan B or Plan C, know this: there is a commonsense way for you to start building your experience in film, television, or new media productions in Hartford and you probably don’t even have to quit your day or night job to make it happen. Because Hartford is just a short distance from New York City, the United States’ second-largest filmmaking hub behind Los Angeles, if you are considering a career in filmmaking as a film director, film producer, film editor, or cameraman (Cinematographer), attending film school in Hartford can be a surprisingly good alternative to relocating somewhere else.

If you want to learn how to direct films, learn how to write screenplays, or become a writer/director/producer who serves as the auteur of your art, mentorship with a professional filmmaker who is also a Film Connection mentor can help you get firsthand experience and insider knowhow without wasting your time or your money.

In fact, the pros have been shooting in Hartford and the surrounding areas for decades. Amistad, Revolutionary Road (starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslett, by film director James Camerson) Rachel Getting Married (directed by Jonathan Demme), The Ice Storm (by director Ang Lee) The Hunt for Red October, War of the Worlds, The Stepford Wives (both 2004 & 1975), The Family Stone, Malcolm X (directed by Spike Lee), Bonfire of the Vanities, Courage Under Fire, Mona Lisa Smile, and Mystic Pizza, are just a few of the featured films which were helmed here, some of them by Hollywood’s greatest film directors. Many well-known TV shows have filmed episodes in the area as well, including Wife Swap, House Hunters and Trading Spaces. In fact, Hartford and the entire state of Connecticut is production-friendly. Every year, the CT Film Office serves the needs of hundreds of major TV networks and producers, production studios, movie studios, and commercial producers, generating millions of dollars in economic benefit to the state of Connecticut.

To APPLY for our Hartford Film School alternative, click here.

FILM CONNECTION FOR FILM EDUCATION, THE MENTORED-EXTERNSHIP APPROACH

Instead of studying film inside of a classroom at a university campus or college at USC, AFI, The Art Institute, University of Hartford, or Yale, our students get mentored by a professional filmmaker in the Hartford area. This mentor allows them into their production company and shows them the skills they use every day, from how to set up various shots and camera angles, to how they work the budget, answer a phone call, create a shooting schedule and much, much more.

In approximately 6 to 9 months, students learn valuable skills, gain firsthand industry insight, and that’s not all. In the Film Connection for Film Production & Editing program, they also have the opportunity to write their own script. The way it works is each student is assigned a Film Connection screenwriting mentor, another working filmmaker and writer who starts with them from the very beginning, prior to page 1, and guides them on how they can turn that kernel of an idea into a premise that’s good enough, meaty enough to take approximately 110-120 pages to see through to an exciting and satisfying climax and denouement (resolution and outcome). Whether you’ve got an idea for a cutting edge horror film or thriller, or the hankerings for a comedy, you can receive the kind of firsthand mentored instruction and guidance which enables you to grow your capabilities as a screenwriter by working directly with someone who knows what goes into a polished and professional script that’s ready to be pitched, shopped, and sold.

If however, the real truth of the matter is that you want to delve deep into cinema verite and German expressionism, definitely look into conventional academic film schools so that you can read and write papers about film history and film as an agent for social change and countercultures of the 20th century. If however, learning how to be a film director, producer, or editor by assisting on actual professional shoots and projects sounds more interesting to you, consider applying to Film Connection. Since your externship lesson days and times are set-up by you and your mentor, most working professionals find they have the time to both extern in-industry as well as complete their industry-oriented eBook assignments on their own schedule.

WONDERING WHAT YOU WANT TO DO IN FILM? FIND YOUR FILM CAREER WITH US

And if you have a burning desire to work in film or television but just don’t know where you belong, getting in and actually seeing how a professional directs, produces, and in short, creates the final product, is one very good way to get the exposure you need to begin charting your course forward in your film career. Exploring your options is nothing to feel bad about either. In fact a great number of the professionals who work in film and television production today didn’t know exactly what they wanted to do in the biz, rather, they found their way through assisting on productions, perhaps being inducted by a family member or friend who enabled them to find their in and look behind the curtain. A vast number of production jobs are rarely mentioned by novices. Every sizable production needs a UPM (Unit Production Manager), an AC (Assistant Camera) person, as well as a key grip, grips, gaffers, sound mixers or “sound guys,” boom operators, line producers, production assistants,  and more.

BUT WHAT IF SCREENWRITING IS ALL YOU WANT TO DO?

Consider our Screenplay Workshop if screenwriting really is your reigning ambition. Our approach to screenwriting is slightly different than the mentored externships offered in our other educational offerings. Rather than go to a production facility, you would be assigned a Film Connection screenwriting mentor who guides you through the process of developing your own idea for a film. While they’re probably in Los Angeles or New York, you can be at home in Hartford since your lessons take place via online video conferencing that’s one-on-one. Perhaps you’ve already got the whole film playing in your imagination, you know the plot points, the characters, the twists and turns. Or maybe that idea is something that’s there just below the surface. You have the inclination to believe it’s something good, something worth writing but you just can’t see the shape of it yet. Wherever you’re at in the creation of your story and screenplay, your mentor will guide you on the creation of a story concept that’s well-developed and vying to be a “Killer Script.” If you’re wondering what’s a Killer Script, it’s the screenplay that stands out above the rest. It gets the professionals who read it, the producer, director, agent, manager, actor or Hollywood executive excited. It’s the script that’s so good, people are willing to invest in it and in-so-doing invest in you.

You will also survey and read a number of excellent scripts and discuss these screenplays with your mentor so that you can start thinking like a professional writer, seeing what’s essential, and what’s not. Importantly, throughout this process you should become fluent in writing for the screen i.e. a largely visual medium of images and sounds. Even the best novelists need to learn how to write for the medium while also keeping the words on the page crisp and enticing for that reader, whether they’re doing coverage, are an agent, manager, or a producer at an independent production company.

In approximately nine months you can have a fully written, polished screenplay as well as your four-page treatment, long and short synopsis, and your pitch. You’ll also learn about becoming a member of the Writer’s Guild of America and copywriting your original script or screenplay.

If you have the workings of what may be a Killer Script whether you’re an attendee of our Screenwriting Workshop or Film Connection for Film Production & Editing program, you will have the chance to step up to the plate and pitch your movie, your fully fleshed out film idea to the very same professionals who could help get your movie produced, who could buy your script and thereby make you a working professional screenwriter. Can you name one ordinary film school that offers the same thing?

Film Connection’s inexpensive and flexible six to nine month programs and workshops will pair you with a working film or television professional who will serve as your personal instructor. Go the Film Production & Editing route, and you will gain hands-on experience on real film or video shoots as well as have the opportunity of meeting and networking with professionals in the business on the local level, i.e. the people who do the hiring. Enabling you to get the experience, connections, and knowledge you need to get a job in film, television, or video and new media is what we’re all about. We’ve been doing it for more than thirty years and a great many of our graduates have gone on to build exciting careers in one of the hottest industries on the planet.

Find out what our Hartford Film Connection film school alternative can do for you.

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 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 extern turned out to be a reliable resource and we hope his experience […]

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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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Film Connection provides unique, mentor-based programs that are affordable, so you can stay in control of your finances.

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