DIRECTING
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Great directors must be great storytellers. The Directing program focuses on narrative, visual language and performance, offering Fellows a thorough understanding of the process of production from script to screen. Fellows learn to collaborate with screenwriters and producers, work with professional actors and incorporate the visions of cinematographers, production designers and editors into all their produced projects.

First Year Fellows direct three substantial narrative projects that include an invaluable opportunity to work with actors from the Screen Actors Guild in a supportive, collaborative environment. The curriculum also requires participation in a directing workshop examining diverse directing styles, techniques and strategies, with specific attention to narrative point of view.

Second Year Directing Fellows team with those in other disciplines to create a short narrative thesis production, guided by professional faculty and utilized in class. Directors also develop a feature film or television project to be included in their thesis portfolios.


FIRST YEAR CURRICULUM

PRN 510: Introduction to Cycle Production – Boot Camp
First Term | 4 Credit Hours

Intensive introductory workshop on the fundamentals of story, cycle production, critical analysis, and collaborative processes. All discipline Fellows collaborate on production exercises as well as receive specialized instruction from their particular program's point of view.

PRN 511: Cycle Production I
First Term | 4 Credit Hours

A workshop wherein Fellows team to form production groups which produce a short narrative project on digital video. Directing Fellows must direct one project and assist on others as well as work as crew in order to strengthen on set experience as well as contribute to the visual storytelling effort. If for any reason Directors direct more than the minimum required, they are expected to fulfill all responsibilities and will be evaluated accordingly.

PRN 512: Cycle Production II & III
Second Term | 8 Credit Hours

A continuing production workshop wherein Fellows team to produce two short narrative projects. First Year Directors must successfully fulfill all directorial pre-production, production and postproduction responsibilities on at least two narrative short projects in the Second Term. If for any reason Directors direct more than the minimum required, they are expected to fulfill all responsibilities and will be evaluated accordingly.

PRN 521 & 522: Narrative Workshop and Analysis
First and Second Terms | 6 Credit Hours Total

A companion workshop to Cycle Production I & II, Narrative Workshop is a core component of the First Year Program. All Fellows participate in a general discussion forum as well as a separate analysis session with their respective individual team members. Particular emphasis is given to the exposition of narrative elements and themes through the use of image, sound, movement, lighting, design, writing and editing strategies. The team also participates in a production review meeting.

DIR 511 & 512: Directing Workshop
First and Second Terms | 4 Credit Hours Total

Directing Fellows examine diverse directing styles, techniques and strategies all designed to develop a working sense of narrative point of view. Included in the workshop are exercises and seminars that explore narrative design, movement, composition, blocking, collaboration and continuity, with particular respect to preparation and analysis of First Year productions.

DIR 511.1: Directing Workshop (Development)
First Term | 1 Credit Hour Total | Elective

This workshop is designed to mentor Producing and Directing Fellows in the fundamentals of story development and screenwriting through the writing of short screenplays. The workshop focuses on story and screenplay development of short narrative projects both original and adapted. The goal of the course is to not only nurture fundamental writing skills, but to also engender a collaborative appreciation and understanding of the writing process. The course also requires Fellows to actively engage in giving and taking notes on their own and their colleagues' creative work.

DIR 521: The Art & Craft of Directing/Dramatic Analysis
First Term | 2 Credit Hours Total

This seminar presents a variety of topics related to specialized aspects of directing, directorial process, directing collaborators, directorial conventions, visual storytelling preparation and other techniques and tools of the art and craft of directing.

DIR 532: Topics in Directing: Acting Scene Study
Second Term | 2 Credit Hours Total

A workshop for Directing Fellows that provides the basics of the actor's language and methods. The term focuses on acting fundamentals for Directors — basic terminology, tools, methods and techniques are practiced through scene study and performance. The Second Term focuses on directing performance for the camera. A variety of individual acting methods are explored through scene work before the camera. Fellows learn how to communicate with actors to achieve performance consistent with the director's storytelling goals.

CON 511 & 512: Master Seminars
First and Second Terms | 2 Credit Hours Total

The Master Seminars present leading figures from all aspects of the motion picture, television and digital media arts. The seminars are designed to provide Fellows with a broad and varied perspective on the contemporary motion picture arts and professions. Active participation and attendance is required.

CON 521 & 522: American Approaches to Film
First and Second Terms | 2 Credit Hours Total

This seminar and screening series provides a broad survey of American cinema in order to explore the aesthetic, cultural, historical and social phenomenon of the motion picture arts. Active participation and attendance is required.

Year One Portfolio Review

Upon review of the First Year work, Faculty invites Fellows to continue to the Second Year and candidacy for the Master of Fine Arts Degree or Certificate of Completion. The portfolio review is conducted by Directing Faculty through a formal interview with each Directing Fellow which results in a recommendation regarding future work in the program.

SECOND YEAR CURRICULUM

PRN 610: Thesis Production – Directing
First and Second Terms | 12 Credit Hours Total

Building on the First Year production experience, the Directing Fellows must successfully fulfill all directorial pre-production, production and post production responsibilities on a thesis production — a professionally executed short film or digital video project — which is evaluated by the Senior Faculty. Directors collaborate with project team members under the guidance of thesis production mentor faculty. Thesis production teams participate in special development, pre-production and post production workshops. In addition, teams visit discipline workshops on a scheduled basis over the course of pre-production, production and post-production in order to gain a thorough understanding of the collaborative interdisciplinary creative process. If a Directing Fellow is approved by Faculty to direct more than one thesis production, the additional project(s) will be considered an additional thesis requirement for completion of the degree or certificate.

PRN 631 & 632: Second Year Development Workshop
First and Second Terms | 1 Credit Hour Total Per Term | Elective

Directing Fellows develop a feature length project for future production. Under the mentorship of development faculty, Fellows continue to develop their skills at identifying, developing and preparing feature-length works.

DIR 611 & 612: Advanced Directing Workshop: Techniques in Directing for Film and TV
First and Second Terms | 4 Credit Hours Total

This workshop is a series of exercises in staging and scene work that require the Directing Fellow to explore performance for the camera and visual storytelling with increasing complexity. The work is analyzed with a Senior Mentor. This component of the workshop continues the directorial emphasis on performance within the visual storytelling context.

DIR 621 & 622: Advanced Art & Craft of Directing: Acting Improvisation or Sound Stage
First and Second Term | 4 Credit Hours Total

This seminar presents a variety of topics related to specialized aspects of directing, directorial process, directing collaborators, directorial conventions, visual storytelling preparation and other advanced techniques and tools of the art and craft of directing. The workshop embraces the professional fields of directing theatrical as well as long format and episodic television formats.

DIR 631: Advanced Acting Techniques For Directors
First Term | 1 Credit Hour per term | Elective

This course focuses on giving the Directing Fellow the ability to generate multi-dimensional film performances that appear to be spontaneous and immediate. The Fellows are fully immersed in an acting class during which time they will be treated and trained as actors to give the young director a first hand look at the actor's process and develop keen insight into their working methods. Fellows will become familiarized with the actor's language and vocabulary in the interests of giving them the ability to converse and generate multi-dimensional performances.

DIR 670: Internship Practicum
First and Second Terms | 1 Credit Hour | Elective

This is an internship course that may become a required course for credit as recommended by the discipline Faculty Mentor. All aspects of this internship must be an integral part of the Fellow's discipline curriculum. The objective of this course is to provide working experience in the approved film/TV profession as it pertains specifically to the Fellow's discipline and degree/certificate requirements. Specific duties and requirements will be outlined and supervised by the faculty mentor. This internship qualifies an international Fellow for Curriculum Practical Training; approval must be obtained by the International Advisor as well as the faculty mentor and Dean prior to enrolling in the course.

DIR 690: Thesis Portfolio – Directing
First and Second Terms | 8 Credit Hours Total

This component embraces the thesis production as a learning and teaching medium through a series of required presentations by the Fellows and their project teams. These presentations are analyzed by the workshop. In addition, a variety of topics and experiences are presented that are designed to broaden the Fellow's understanding of the art of direction and performance.

CON 621 & 622: World Approaches to Film
First and Second Terms | 2 Credit Hours Total

This second year seminar and screening series provides a broad survey of international cinema in order to explore the aesthetic, cultural, historical and social phenomenon of the motion picture arts. Active participation and attendance is required.

CON 682: The Profession
Second Term | 1 Credit Hour Total | Elective

This series of seminars provides an overview of the contemporary motion picture professions. In order to aid the transition into a professional career, this course provides current information and insight into the workings of the established and independent motion picture and television professions.

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