Film School Cost

How much does film school cost?

Some people harbour a desire to make movies – after all, we watch them all the time and marvel at the way a dream can become reality on the screen. For most of us it remains a dream, but if you have serious ambitions it is worth considering the cost of going to film school, something that can be surprisingly affordable if done the right way.

General Cost

• Where you choose to study is the major variation in cost; you can study a film course at one of the top universities in the USA for under $7000 per year in tuition fees, and this will be a comprehensive four year course that will be well structured and worthwhile.
• For the top level of film school tuition you need to look at one of the American Film Institute courses – or similar – and these are only for the seriously dedicated at upwards of $30,000 a year but are highly regarded in the industry.
• Many universities across the USA offer film courses, and you may qualify for state assistance in some cases – check out all available in your area.

Extra Cost

• Accommodation is a major part of studying and can add greatly to the cost of a course; allow for at least $5000 over the course of study for rent alone – that is in student rooms.
• Factor in the cost of materials needed for each year of study – this could come to $1000 per year.
• You may need a camera of your own – a decent digital video camera can cost as little as $200 these days.
• Check out for available grants and assistance.


• Consider studying in other than the USA – you may find excellent courses at a number of universities in the UK, for instance, and fees may be cheaper too.
• Check out shorter courses designed for mature students if you happen to be looking for a career change.
• If you can study near to your home you need not look for further accommodation.
• Consider working at one of the studios on a voluntary basis to gain experience of the industry before committing to an expensive course of study – there is nothing like finding out it is not what you wanted too late.


• Visit websites for advice – is a popular and highly recommended source of information – and make sure that you are committed to the cause.
• Ask a friend who has attended a film school in the past, as word of mouth is the method to pick a school.

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