This is your
San Francisco Classroom

Real filmmaking education. Real film industry connections.

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.

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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San Francisco

Film Connection Locations
Schedule a Tour

Visit a Film Production Company
In San Francisco

Get started with a tour of one of our California apprenticeship/externship locations. Or call us for more information at (415) 230-2810


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  • 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.

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 San Francisco 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?

Ricky Lapkin San Francisco Mentor

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Ricky Lapkin San Francisco Mentor

Background

Ricky Lapkin full-service production company offering cinematic shorts and films, corporate audio visual services, and analog recording transfers to all digital formats. Request an Invitation

Mark Roos San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Mark Roos San Francisco Mentor

Background

“I create music that connects people. It’s what I love to do and I’ve been doing it for over 25 years. I’ve worked with some if the best directors around on a variety amazing of projects in just about every medium there is, including computer games, full-feature and documentary films, websites, radio, television shows, commercials and custom music production.” Clients: Discovery Channel, MSNBC, History Channel Request an Invitation

Richard Brandes San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Richard Brandes San Francisco Mentor

Background

Richard Brandes is an accomplished writer, director, and producer of over two dozen feature films, which have been released through such well known companies as Alliance/Atlantis, Screen Gems, Sony, HBO, CBS, NBC/Universal, and Lionsgate, to name just a few. Known in the industry for creating highly commercial, profitable films, Richard has an impeccable reputation for completing his projects on schedule and on budget. Request an Invitation

Paul Guay San Francisco Mentor

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Paul Guay San Francisco Mentor

Background

Credits: Liar Liar, The Little Rascals, Shrinking Violet Request an Invitation

Steve Rausch San Francisco Mentor

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Steve Rausch San Francisco Mentor

Background

Steve Rausch is owner and operator of focused motion. Focused Motion produces and shoot video content for commercials, industrial videos, surgeries and live sporting events. My company has worked on documentaries, programming for Discovery Networks and reality TV shows. Request an Invitation

Adam Weber San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Adam Weber San Francisco Mentor

Background

Adam Weber is a multi-purpose media production addict who has specialized in copywriting, video production, audio production, front-end web development, digital advertising, media planning, and any other role you can think of in regards to making intangible things using software. He also likes to be creative by writing songs with his band Integrow and making delectable craft home brews in his free time. Request an Invitation

Mike Domgard San Francisco Mentor

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Mike Domgard San Francisco Mentor

Background

Credits: Blur Parties, Lincoln Promo Video, Inner Thoughts Request an Invitation

Aimee Schoof San Francisco Mentor

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Aimee Schoof San Francisco Mentor

Background

Aimee Schoof is an entertainment executive, producer, and co-founder of Intrinsic Value Films with Isen Robbins. She has produced more than 30 feature films that have premiered either at Sundance, Tribeca, SXSW, Toronto, Venice, New Directors/New Films, and Berlin. Request an Invitation

Dean Baker San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Dean Baker San Francisco Mentor

Background

Projects range from Multi-camera Live Webcasting to National TV Ads for Good Neighbor Pharmacies, Regulator Boats, and Product launches airing on Lifetime, The Learning Channel and The Golf Channel. Request an Invitation

Ryan Heppe San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Ryan Heppe San Francisco Mentor

Background

During his tenure at CCH, Heppe was hired by legendary producer David Foster (The Getaway, Short Circuit, The Mask of Zorro) and quickly climbed to the position of Head of Development where he became involved with Foster’s productions: Collateral Damage starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Hart’s War starring Bruce Willis and Colin Farrell, and The Core starring Aaron Eckhart and Hilary Swank. As a hyphenate Producer/Director/Writer/Actor, some of Heppe’s work includes: Production of the docu-drama The Magic Was In The Music, a remake of Short Circuit, adaptations of the 80’s television mini-series V and cop series T.J. Hooker, among others. As an actor, he’s starred in such stage productions as You Can’t Take It With You, Life On The Bowery, Dracula and Picnic at Hanging Rock – several of which he directed. Request an Invitation

Karl Koelling San Francisco Mentor

Read Profile

Karl Koelling San Francisco Mentor

Background

I began TAPROOT with a passion to create inspiring film and video content that would move people and maybe even make the world a little bit better place. There are projects that TAPROOT pursues and develops based on our interests, but I’m a firm believer that we all have our callings, and that collectively we can have the biggest impact. As a result, TAPROOT partners with businesses, agencies, and other organizations that are doing important work, helping them tell their stories and share their ideas through cinematic filmmaking. Our team has a multi-disciplinary background that enables us to understand and compellingly translate your messages and ideas to the visual medium of film and video, and we create and execute projects of varying scale from start to finish. I run TAPROOT and provide direction on all our projects, which include: story-based branded content, television commercials, web based video of all sorts, and film series. If you care about how you’re presenting your work to the world and want to do so in an honest, inspiring manner – we’d make a good match. Request an Invitation

View Full List

San Francisco News

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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Can Being Too Indie Hurt Your Career?

Learn More

The Film Scene in San Francisco

The San Francisco, California Film Connection Film School Alternative

The San Francisco Film Connection Film School Advantage

1) Locations and More Locations.

The Film Connection is not limited to a central campus, or even a handful of campuses. Our on-the-job training approach has enabled us to establish hundreds of locations throughout the U.S. Whether you want to learn filmmaking here in San Francisco, or in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Nashville, Atlanta, Phoenix or Billings, Montana, we can arrange an apprenticeship (externship) near where you live. Learn near where you live. Advantage: Film Connection.

2) Super Low Tuition.

Taking on tens of thousands of of debt can kill your career before it ever gets off the ground. Our tuition is so low that you can graduate the program with little or no debt, and get on with your film career without the extra burden. Low tuition, no add-on charges. Advantage: Film Connection.

3) Learn On-the-Job, Not In a Classroom.

Which do you think would be better: to learn film in a classroom, or to learn on-the-job and on the set of real film productions? With our program, you’re placed as an apprentice (extern) in a real San Francisco film production company, where you learn the real world of film by participating in the process. Real-world experience, no classrooms. Advantage: Film Connection.

4) Be Mentored One-on-One By a Film Professional.

Our instructors aren’t career professors lecturing in classrooms; they are real film producers, film directors, screenwriters, film editors, etc. who are actually working and have real film credits. One of these stellar professionals will become your personal mentor, teaching you everything you need to know about the film business in general, and your area of expertise in particular. One teacher to one student. Advantage: Film Connection.

5) The Film School Most Recommended By the Pros.

Our film school has lots of professional endorsements? The pros who recommend the Film Connection are the best in the business. We have their support because they see our results every day, in the many film students we introduce into the industry. Lots of endorsements from real film professionals. Advantage: Film Connection.

6) Job Placement Assistance.

If you aren’t hired immediately upon graduation from our apprenticeship (externship) program, we don’t just leave you alone to find your way. For all our graduates, we offer up to 12 months of active job placement assistance through our Stay Connected program. We don’t just hand you a cold-call lead list when you graduate. We help you find work. Advantage: Film Connection.

7) From the Jump, You’re On the Inside

Getting the attention of someone on the “inside” of the film business is one of the biggest hurdles film students face. With the San Francisco Film Connection, this isn’t an issue, because from day one of your training, you’re already on the inside, working in a real film production company, proving your abilities to the people who have the power to help advance your career. Get on the inside track of the film industry. Advantage: Film Connection.

8) Free Tutoring.

No one has to fall through the cracks in our film school. For any student struggling with assignments or projects, we offer free, unlimited tutoring. Unlimited private tutoring. Advantage: Film Connection.

9) Real Connections with Real Professionals.

With our program, you’re meeting and connecting with hundreds of actual film industry pros—the ones who can one day hire you. Connections are KEY to succeeding in the film business, and we put you in the heart of the industry so you can make those connections. Real world film industry connections. Big Advantage: Film Connection.

10) Take It All the Way To Hollywood

Dreaming of making it big in Hollywood? Our film school provides a pathway no other film school offers. With our structured curriculum, you’ll be guided step by step in the development of your very own film idea, and when you’re ready, we’ll set up a meeting in Los Angeles for you to pitch your film to actual industry executives! This is a one-of-a-kind opportunity, and only the Film Connection offers it. A real chance to break into Hollywood. Big Advantage: Film Connection.

Your SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA FILM SCHOOL ALTERNATIVE

Welcome to the San Francisco FILM CONNECTION, the film school that places you in an actual San Francisco film production company, where you will learn directing, producing, editing, camera, screenwriting or general production by working as a film student apprentice (extern). One of the best ways to break into the film business in San Francisco is to start inside a San Francisco film production company as a film apprentice (extern), and the FILM CONNECTION gets you in the door. We don’t believe film school should cost 50 thousand dollars or more, so we place you inside a real production company to learn filmmaking for far a lot less. Many industry professionals agree that our mentor-apprentice (extern) approach to teaching filmmaking is a smart and cost-effective way to learn. Get connected as you get educated with our film school alternative. To APPLY for our San Francisco Film School, click here. While SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA is itself home to about 800,000 people, the greater San Francisco Bay Area (comprising San Jose, Oakland and lots of other cities) is a sprawling metropolitan area of about 8.5 million people, making the Bay Area the 5th largest DMA in the country. Moving well beyond its roots as a gold-rush town, San Francisco has a reputation for being an intellectual city, a liberal city and a cultural city, which allows for great diversity in the media and performing arts. This city will forever be linked with the Summer of Love, which spawned a revolution in the music business with acts such as the Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin and the Grateful Dead. Additionally, San Francisco boasts a thriving film community, not only due to its numerous film festivals per year and plenty of film and TV productions on the local level, but also because its diverse scenery and resources attract hundreds of major productions to film on location. Just look at a sampling of the many films that have been filmed in the San Francisco Bay Area:
  • Blue Jasmine (2013)
  • The Five-Year Engagement (2012)
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011)
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014)
  • Mrs. Doubtfire (2013)
  • The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
  • House of Sand and Fog (2003)
  • The Princess Diaries (2001)
  • Patch Adams (1998)
  • Interview With the Vampire (1994)
  • Basic Instinct (1992)
  • Escape From Alcatraz (1979)
  • The Graduate (1967)
  • The Birds (1963)
  • Vertigo (1958)
As you might imagine, San Francisco’s active film scene makes it a great place for up-and-coming producers, directors, film editors and screenwriters to connect to the industry and learn the business without necessarily having to migrate to Los Angeles. This makes FILM CONNECTION’s Film School in San Francisco an excellent choice for the student seeking career opportunities in film. The FILM CONNECTION curriculum revolves around the mentor/apprentice relationship. We place you as an apprentice (extern) in a real production company, and we pair you with a mentor who has years of experience in film production, and who trains you one-on-one in all aspects of the trade. Not only does this approach provide the very best and most thorough education possible, but it also enables you to gain valuable work experience and make lots of connections to advance your career. In as little as six months, you’ll not only be well-prepared to embark on your film career, but you’ll also have the connections to help you do it! You owe it to yourself to see what the SAN FRANCISCO FILM CONNECTION can do for your career.
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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Contact the San Francisco Film Connection


555 California Street, Office 4925
San Francisco, CA 94104
(415) 230-2810

Email: [email protected]
Hours: M-F 9:00AM - 6:00PM

Recording, Radio, Film Connection & CASA Schools is licensed by the State of Tennessee Higher Education Commission.