2015: International Studies at Warsaw Film School - Film academy Poland - Cinematography, filmmaking courses in Poland


In the 2015/2016 academic year, Warsaw Film School will launch English-language study programs. The new courses will be available in three main areas of film education: directing, cinematography and screenwriting. The program will cultivate fresh filmmaking talent, qualified to operate across variety markets, and to contribute to the artistic development of both European and international cinematography. 


Warsaw Film School is dedicated to cultivating artistic sensibility, necessary theoretical knowledge, and first and foremost the practical "know how" in budding film professionals. Across all English language courses, first year of study covers essential subjects such as the basics of film directing, writing, camera direction, and the language of film and visual arts. Over the following two years, students choose their specialisation and faculty classes,leading to the title of the Bachelor of Arts in Film Directing, Cinematography or Screenwriting. Across the degrees, students are encouraged to work together to develop meaningful relationships conducive to translating original visions onto the screen. 


The three year Bachelor Of Arts study program in Film Directing aims to make students feel at home on the film production set, develop their leadership skills and gain fundamental knowledge of varied audio-visual forms. In Warsaw Film School young directors learn directly from experienced professionals, covering a range of topics from the Golden Ratio and composition to working with actors and modern cameras. The theoretical background is provided by a series of lectures and screenings at the School's new cinema facility. 

Each year of studies concludes with production of a short film project. The degree is granted based on individual thesis project, which the directors develop from the creation of screenplay, through budgeting to editing and postproduction. Thesis films are produced by the School and are supported by promotional campaign through their festival and awards career. 


The Bachelor Of Arts Cinematography program prepares students for the job of the director of photography, cinematographer as well as a high-quality image postproduction specialist. Practical classes are focused on familiarising students with digital image registration in classic and stereoscopic technologies, and high end FX computer production and postproduction. Graduate's skills will include working knowledge of diverse range of modern cameras and digital recording systems as well as editing and colour correction. 

During the course of the program students create various AV short forms and each year of studies is concluded with a production of a short film. The cinematography students also get a firm background in film history and language, with a special focus on frame and visual traditions. 

The School provides young cinematographers with modern and diverse film equipment including classic and new models of Sony EX, Panasonic and ARRI Alexa, as well as Canon 5D cameras. 


The Bachelor Of Arts in Screenwriting program prepares students to work as screenwriters and on-set producers across variety of formats (feature film, genre, TV and mini-series, web-based). The course also focuses on familiarising students with the reality of international markets. A graduate will be fluent in the legal issues concerning intellectual property, cooperation with other screenwriters and the entities that commission their work. 

The program consists of intensive writing workshops, preparing students to work in dynamic environments, and theoretical lectures on screenwriting techniques, film analysis and practical use of both. Additional classes cover areas such as psychology, improvisation, design thinking, project pitching and art coaching, modelled after solutions currently used by top screenwriting teams in Hollywood. 

The degree is granted based on a thesis – a full feature film script or a complete pilot epiode script and first season outline (explication, pilot and character description) for a series. 


The new study programs in English are dedicated to all students interested in an education that will prepare them for a career in international audiovisual productions. First and foremost, the education is practical – by practitioners for practitioners. Theoretical approaches are built independently, through interaction with art and ongoing conversation with experienced film scholars. 

The courses convey essential knowledge of structures and different models of film production across a variety of national markets. Our goal is to cultivate in students an intuition to guide them through the ever-changing industry, as well as develop respect for the issues of accessibility, socio-political contexts of the audio-visual world, and the power of self-realisation through creative work. 

The School’s governing body, Foundation LATERNA MAGICA, was created by Polish producer, director and screenwriter Maciej Ślesicki and one of our top actors Bogusław Linda. The Foundation aims to provide film and media education to young people and professionals on all levels. The School campus, based in Warsaw, also includes an urban culture hub formed around our cinema facilities, a film-profiled high school, and vocational school, with plans to introduce primary level education in the coming years. 


The international courses at Warsaw Film School are currently the only degree-level film programs in English in this part of Europe. 

Poland is producing around 60 feature films and is involved in 20 to 30 international coproduction projects a year. We are based at the heart of a dynamically developing audiovisual market, with strong tradition and sincere attachment to film a mode of personal and political expression. Warsaw Film School had been active on the market for over ten years and is currently one of the fastest growing film academies in Europe. This allows us to employ a highly qualified, professionally active teaching staff of Polish and international filmmakers and film scholars. 

We are constantly improving our infrastructure and investing in our campus, the home to School's production facilities and newly-restored Cinema with 35mm, digital and 3D capabilities. The Schools administration system runs on modern, user-friendly online system, allowing the students to enrich their education with new digital and virtual media solutions. 

The School organises a range of educational, artistic, and professional events, including Script Fiesta – Europe's only fully open festival dedicated to the art of writing for the screen. Each year hundreds of professionals gather for a week of master-classes, workshops, pitching sessions and social events. The list of special guests includes Joe Eszterhas, Pilar Alessandra, and Linda Aronson.

A booming city of 1.7 million, Warsaw is a vibrant centre of arts and culture, with a nightlife to match more traditionally tourist-oriented European capitals, while retaining a newcomer’s edge with plenty of inspiration for aspiring storytellers. 

More information: 
Anna Bierzanska
International Projects Coordinator 
International courses blog

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