Get ready to kick-start your career in film or TV. Our one-year diploma gives you hands-on practical training in all aspects of filmmaking and equips you with the skills, knowledge and ongoing support to excel in your chosen field.
Join our supportive network of film professionals and hone your craft in a small group within the nurturing environment of London’s best-loved film school. Our Filmmaking Diploma is the only fully comprehensive course of its kind, where you will learn your skills from practising industry experts and be fully immersed in the production of your own films.
You’ll leave as a versatile filmmaker with an IMDB profile, a network of contacts, and all the benefits of collaborating with world class students, professionals and mentors. You’ll also have an impressive showreel for prospective employers ensuring you get your big break. 95% of all LFA students start working in the film industry within three months of graduating – why not be one of them.
“ I have acquired so many skills since I began this course, I enjoy coming to class every morning, be it scriptwriting, cinematography, or sound, and immersing and challenging myself within every department" (Tessa Rose Van Erlach, Student)
At a glance:
Duration: 1 year, full-time
Intakes: Spring and Autumn each year
Hours: 30 per week (plus additional hours, incl. evenings and weekends)
Our intensive 12 month Filmmaking Diploma was the first of its kind to offer “full picture filmmaking”. You will learn the six key filmmaking disciplines - directing, producing, editing, screenwriting, cinematography and sound, in over 30 hours of practical tuition per week. Find out where your strengths lie, and move into the industry with a wealth of skills, useful contacts and practical knowledge.
All our tutors are film and TV industry professionals with a working knowledge of current practice and a host of impressive credits. Regular tutors include BAFTA winning Director Richard Kwietniowski, Screenwriter Michael Holden, Editor Peter Hollywood and Cinematographer Robin Vidgeon, while recent guest speakers have included Actor Diana Rigg, Producer Jan Harlan (‘Full Metal Jacket’) and Writer Sam Bain (‘Four Lions’ and ‘Fresh Meat’). Through tutor support, workshops and complimentary membership to LFA Filmmaker’s Club you gain access to a wide range of industry jobs, networking opportunities and work experience placements.
Unlike other film schools, all course materials and film budgets are included in your fees. You will work with Super 16mm and high end digital cameras (such as the Arri Alexa or Sony F55); learn the latest software including Final Draft, Movie Magic EP Budgeting & Scheduling, Avid Media Composer and Adobe Premiere and work on a broad range of projects and film shoots including: commercials, narratives, two, four and eight minute films. This all ensures that you leave LFA with an impressive showreel of work.
Graduation takes place at the National Film Theatre at BFI Southbank where students will get to see their final films showcased on the big screen in front of invited family, friends and special guests.
LFA Filmmaking Diploma is a multi-disciplinary hands-on course, designed to enable students to make creative decisions and receive constructive feedback in a safe, nurturing environment. Over three terms Filmmaking Diploma progresses naturally from a basic introduction to aesthetic and technical aspects of filmmaking to wider, more complex problems posed by film production.
Students explore in depth the narrative short film format, from concept and character to dialogue. A proportion of student scripts are selected to go through intensive workshops (script editing and written feedback) until they are ready to go into production. Students learn early on in the course that in the film business “writing is rewriting” and so modelling industry practice takes priority during the development period.
Students are taught the fundamentals of directing, from looking at the script to pre-production, production and editing. Students are encouraged to take on the role of a storyteller and team leader. A number of individual projects (visual narratives) are set and the finished film analysed in the class. Students work with actors to understand staging, text analysis and casting. During the pre-production of graduation films students have one-to-one feedback and advice from an acclaimed film or TV industry director. Recent directing mentors have included Oscar nominated Ian Barnes & Director of Channel 4’s drama ‘Humans’ and E4’s ‘Misfits’ Lewis Arnold.
Students are trained in both line producing/production management and creative producing to maximise their opportunities for work in the film & TV industry. Students acquire a working knowledge of EP Budgeting & Scheduling software, contracts, copyright, distribution and the basics of financing for independent filmmakers (for both short and feature films). Students also receive pre-production and on-set support.
Students cover a number of roles: director of photography, gaffer, camera operator, 1st and 2nd camera assistants and grip (track and dolly). Predominantly, students work with Super 16mm film cameras to understand thoroughly the nature of light, framing and the mechanics of film. Classes are taught by, and shoots are supervised by, many different members of the British Society of Cinematographers. Students are exposed to the highest standards of practice by some of the world’s leading directors of photography.
Students learn: the definition of sound and the physics behind it; the physical recording of production sound on digital recorders with a range of microphones, including radio mics; working to a frame; multiple tracks; and the craft of sound design/mixing. Some practical sessions are combined with cinematography and all graduation films are recorded with live sound.
Editing & Post-Production Sound
Students work with existing drama material and rushes from student’s own individual projects to learn the Avid Media Composer and/or Final Cut Studio editing packages. These practical sessions are woven together with theory lectures that include: cutting techniques; filmic time and space; editing styles; setting audio levels and foley; music in film – a brief history of music in cinema and the aesthetics of film music; and a practical guide to working with a composer.
Individual Film Projects and Commercials
Throughout the course students are given an opportunity to direct and work on a number of projects, including short films and commercials. Tutors guide and assess students through a formal shooting experience on Super 16mm film and/or digital formats with professional actors. This supportive environment is where students discover their strengths as they perform selected crew roles. Constructive feedback is an on-going process throughout the course – written assessments cover technical, creative and collaborative capabilities.
Production of Graduation Films
Students pitch to secure a head of department role, such as director of photography, producer or director, and work as a team across a number of films, rotating through a variety of crew roles. Role allocations are decided upon using student pitches, previous assessments and careers guidance.
Students are given relative autonomy in their decision-making and manage a several-thousand-pound budget – students decide what proportion is spent on film stock, locations, actors, etc. Each crew role has its own clearly defined function and responsibilities, giving students an experience of the industry roles in conditions emulating those of a professional film set: a director works with a writer to develop the script and with an editor to edit the film.
We provide pre-production and on-set professional technical support. Students have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in a supportive environment and to find their own creative voice.
Film Festival Attendance
Students are encouraged to attend events and screenings at a range of film festivals throughout the duration of the course. LFA is involved with a variety of film festivals both within the UK and Europe. In addition students are invited to attend workshops held at these festivals and facilitated by the LFA. Where possible, students will be issued with delegate passes for relevant festivals, where we actively encourage attendance at screenings or networking events. Such festivals may include the London Short Film Festival or Encounters Film Festival.
Enhancing Students Film-School Experience
Together, students form lasting professional and personal relationships. LFA is a filmmaking community that operates like a production company. Students from all courses regularly support one another, thus enhancing their film-school experience: for example, the multi-disciplinary aspect of the Filmmaking Diploma enables graduates to crew for the Feature Film Develoment Lab projects; the Screenwriting Diploma students submit scripts for production and join the sets of the Filmmaking Diploma students’ films.
All the excitement of seeing your work projected on the big screen is shared by your friends, family, cast and crew, at the LFA annual Graduation Ceremony & Awards which take place at the BFI. You are presented with your Filmmaking Diploma from the hands of industry personalities such as the director Nicolas Roeg and the producer Sandy Lieberson.
A selection of your productions are showcased to industry professionals, including producers, directors, development executives and potential film investors.
To learn what some of our graduates are doing now you can read our Graduate Stories.
The Filmmaking Diploma fees (as listed below) are all-inclusive of film production budget and there are no hidden costs.
There is one partial scholarship available and a number of Bursary placements available per Filmmaking Diploma intake. These plces are awarded on merit and at LFA's discretion. Students from outside of the EU (requiring Tier 4 visa to study in the UK) are not eligible for LFA Bursaries, however they are eligible for the partial scholarship. For further information please contact our Admissions Coordinator on +44 (0) 207 3867711 or email email@example.com
Please visit the Funding Your Studies section of our website for more information.
Upon graduating from our filmmaking diploma students can opt to use their qualification towards a Master of the Arts (MA) OR BA (hons) qualification at one of our partner universities. We offer two routes to students wishing to continue their postgraduate studies in order to achieve an MA. Students have the opportunity to study part-time for a further year at either Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge or the University of Hertfordshire. Taking the MA progression route means that you get more time dedicated to practical film training than many other MA filmmaking courses as the year of unrivalled production experience you get at London Film Academy ensures that you graduate from the course as a highly employable prospect with a wealth of important filmmaking skills and an impressive showreel of work.
Both routes outlined below offer excellent opportunities to develop your career as a filmmaker and progress in a creative and collaborative environment.
ROUTE 1: MA Filmmaking at Anglia Ruskin University
Students who successfully complete the one-year LFA Filmmaking Diploma will receive admission onto the connecting Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge MA programme with a credit transfer (90M level credits). Students will therefore only have to gain an additional 90 credits to successfully complete the Master of Arts qualification
LFA Filmmaking Diploma (1 year) followed by ⇒ Anglia Ruskin University MA Film & Television Production (either 6 months or 1 year).
ROUTE 2: MA Filmmaking at the University of Hertfordshire
Students who successfully complete the one-year LFA Diploma will receive fast-track admission to the MA in Film and Television Production at University of Hertfordshire programme to gain a Master of Arts qualification.
LFA Diploma (1 year) ⇒ University of Hertfordshire MA Filmmaking (1 year)
Not ready for an MA? You can also use your Filmmaking Diploma to progress onto a BA.
Students who successfully complete the Filmmaking Diploma have the opportunity to put their qualification towards a BA Hons in Film and Television at University of Hertfordshire. Students must successfully pass the diploma and have an IELTS 6.0 with no lower than 5.5 in each band or equivalent. The BA has three specialisms: Documentary, Entertainment and Fiction, which is decided by the tutor at the start of the year.
To book your place on this course please:
Apply online or Apply by post/fax, print out the application form and post to London Film Academy, 52A Walham Grove, London, SW6 1QR, email firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 0207 381 6116. As soon as we've received your application we’ll send you a confirmation email containing payment details. Please check your ‘Junk Mail’ folder if you appear to have not received this email.
All international students outside of the EEA (non-EU countries) must obtain a Tier 4 General Student Visa to enter the UK. Please see Visa Information for more details.
Please complete the online application form or PDF version and apply with:
Please see Filmmaking Diploma Application Checklist for further details
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