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Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking with an option in Cinematography

Overview of BFA

  • Type of program: Academic education
  • Programs offered: Program in English
  • Length of program: 3 years
  • prerequisite: High School diploma or completion of secondary school
  • Second year entry permitted: if prior credits earned in a filmmaking related program
  • Final project: in area of selected option
  • Diploma: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking is a three-year comprehensive degree in the art and craft of filmmaking, with the emphasis on hands-on instruction coupled with practical exercises in all the essentials of film and television production including directing, production, editing, cinematography and screenwriting.

The first year is oriented towards learning the fundamentals of film and television production with the emphasis on documentary and other non-fiction forms in film and television production. Second year, the emphasis is on fiction and the mastering of the technical and artistic aspects of film and television production.

In the third and final year of study, while taking the required core courses comprising the basis of their degree, the student chooses from five possible options: directing, production, editing, cinematography and screenwriting and prepares a project related to their selected option. This, in addition to selective workshops offered in the BFA curriculum, forms the basis of the program. Consequently, the student is trained to become a well-rounded and polyvalent filmmaker with additional practice in the area of their chosen option.

Option in Cinematography

The option in Cinematography gives students, in addition to pursuing their required core courses, the opportunity to orient their final year project towards the craft of camera and lighting. Students with a Cinematography option must photograph three approved film projects in their final year of studies. They also have priority in all camera and lighting workshops during their second and third years.

Although the student’s final year curriculum allows for the choosing of a project related to the student’s Cinematography option, the student must, at the same time, continue and complete the required core classes of the Bachelor’s program.

Particulars of BFA

In addition to the required core subjects, the Bachelor’s program includes a choice of approximately 40 intense, high-end specialized workshops given by industry professionals covering a wide range of topics including the latest developments in production and technological advancements in the film, television and new media industries.

Included in the program, is an exclusive membership at the world-renowned French Cinémathèque giving EICAR students free access to both the Cinémathèque library and mutltimedia library as well as admission to all daily screenings. The EICAR Graduation and Film Awards are held every year in the Cinémathèque’s prestigious Henri Langlois Theatre.

The small class sizes and one-on-one tutoring with personalized feedback on class exercises and film projects are the cornerstones of the EICAR program, allowing students to advance rapidly towards mastering the fundamentals of film and television production.

Validation of credits

After successfully completing all core classes, required workshops, and final year project, amounting to 180 ECTS the student is awarded a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking degree issued by the European Board of Higher Education Schools (EABHES).


First year

Introducing the fundamentals of visual storytelling

The emphasis of the first year program is on documentary and non-fiction filmmaking and developing the student’s visual vocabulary through theoretical courses and practical exercises.

  • Directing : documentary, fundamentals of visual storytelling, scene coverage, staging, basic film structure
  • Screenwriting: introduction to basic structure from concept to character, scriptwriting rules and format
  • Production:  basic production management, assistant director skills, location management, continuity
  • Cinematography:  basic framing and lighting principals, digital workflow on set, introduction to a wide array of digital cameras including Panavision DVX 200 4K, Blackmagic Ursa 4K, etc., as well as16mm film
  • Editing:  narrative editing skills, the basics of cutting and continuity, mastering editing software such as Adobe Premiere Pro

In each of these core courses, students are given weekly hands-on practical exercises to explore specific areas of filmmaking.

Second year

Perfecting fiction techniques in filmmaking

While continuing to develop their polyvalent skills in the disciplines outlined in the first year, students will have the opportunity to discover and develop the craft of fictional narrative in visual storytelling.

  • Directing: staging, shot listing and storyboarding, communicating with crew and actors, and interpretation of the script
  • Directing actors:  fundamentals of casting and rehearsal techniques
  • Screenwriting: dramaturgy, character development, structure
  • Production: budgeting, scheduling, location scouting and permits, running a film set
  • Cinematography: aesthetics of light, camera movement, lenses and perspective, axes and shooting rules, basic grip and lighting techniques, introduction of new equipment and technology including Sony PMW-F5 et PMW-FS7
  • Editing: dialogue editing, sound integration, sophisticated post-production techniques
  • Production Design: art direction and production design in relation to directorial choices and cinematography

Additionally, students have the opportunity to broaden their knowledge through a series of specialized intensive workshops covering a wide array of film, television and media topics.

Third year

Focus on the third term project

In addition to completing the core curriculum and required workshops, students will devote significant time to the development of their final year project supported by extensive one-on-one tutoring.

  • Directing: preparation and execution of final year film
  • Screenwriting: pitching and writing of the final year film
  • Production: fundamentals of creative producing
  • Editing: art and craft of creative editing and post production techniques (Avid, advanced techniques of Adobe Premier)
  • Cinematography: advanced lighting, composition and camera techniques, introduction to the high-end digital cameras such as Arri Alexa Plus, RED Weapon Helium 8K
  • Production design: establishing the correlation between the various artistic disciplines – music, theatre, dance, art – and the relationship to cinema and the moving image

Course description


Master Class Lecture Series

Master Class Lecture Series is a weekly program where guest speakers, internationally renowned film, television and media professionals, all celebrated in their specific fields, give a two-hour lecture on the subject of their expertise. Throughout the year, students from BFA, MFA and One Year Filmmaking programs attend the Master Class Lectures with subjects ranging from the role of the talent agent to how to work with a film composer.

Some of our Master Class Guests :

Jacques Arnaud created and ran for 40 years La Franco American Films, one of the most successful French production companies in history, which has made more than 2000 commercials. In 1985, he received the only César Award which has been given for a commercial, for “Les Vautours” directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. He has also collaborated with masters like Ridley Scott and Orson Welles.

Keren Ben Rafael is a filmmaker and screenwriter who graduated from La Fémis film school in 2009. Many of her documentaries and films have been awarded in international film festivals in France, Brazil, Germany and the USA.

Caroline Bonmarchand started to work as a Development Manager for the American production company Gotham Entertainment Group. In 1997, she founded her own company Avenue B and has developed over the past years a network of co-producers, broadcasters, and distributors on the international market.

Eric du Faure is a musician and performer known under his stage name Private Pepper. He has held many roles in the music industry, such as a producer, record executive, manager, composer and music video director. He released is first six-track EP in 2013 and his fisrt studio album QIU in April 2015 for which he shot two music videos in Rio de Janeiro and the Isle of Ré.

Julie Gavras started her career in the film industry as a first and second AD, before moving into directing documentaries. In 2007, director Costa-Gavras’s daughter wrote and directed her first feature film “Blame it on Fidel” which was selected at Sundance Festival and received the Michel d’Ornano Award at the Deauville American Film Festival. Her second feature film “Late Bloomers” was selected at the 2011 Berlin Film Festival.

Charles Jodoin-Keaton is a Script Supervisor in film and television and has worked with directors Julie Delpy, Laurent Firode, Carine Tardieu, Frédéric Fonteyne, Franck Mancuso, Jan Peter.He has been the script supervisor on network television series such as “Hannibal”, “Covert Affairs” and “Royal Pains”.

Ivan Lebeau has been working in the video game industry for more than 22 years. In 2009, he founded the media consulting company Prodeo Consulting. Ivan is also the General Manager in France for the worldwide cloud gaming leaderGamefly Streaming, as well as the President of Gamestream, a new player in the gaming industry which offers cloud gaming services.

Jean-Charles Lévy is an accomplished producer who started as a financial consultant for Arthur Andersen, before joining and presiding TF1 USA in Los Angeles. In 2003, he created his company Forecast Pictures, which has financed and produced several films directed by Stephen Hopkins, Todd Haynes and Elie Chouraqui.

Dezso Magyar is a prize winning filmmaker. Born in Hungary, he has written and directed very controversial films which were recognized and awarded at international film festivals (Cannes, Oberhausen, Locarno), before immigrating to the USA. For the last two decades, he has been teaching and leading in one of the best film schools in the world such as the American Film Institute, the Canadian Film Center and Chapman University.

Philippe Ros spent 11 years working as a Camera Assistant before he started his career as a Director of Photography on the Tour de France. Shoulder-held camera work became his area of specialization and he started to work on live concerts, music documentaries and commercial as a Lighting Director. Interested in digital camera, he has become a reference on 4K digital intermediate and has worked on major documentary films such as Yann Arthus Bertrand’s “Home” and Jacques Perrin’s “Oceans” and “Les Saisons”.

Judy Shrewsbury is a Costume Designer who has worked with some of the most prestigious actors and directors such as Manoel de Oliveira, Wim Wenders, Claire Denis, Sean Connery, Catherine Deneuve and Robert De Niro.

Adrian Smith has been an Artist and Designer in the creative industries for the last 40 years. He has worked both as an Art Director and a Production Designer for television (“Shameless”, “The History of Mr. Polly”) and cinema with major directors such as Stanley Kubrick (“Full Metal Jacket”, 1987), Asif Kapadia (“The Warrior”, 2001), Nicholas Winding Refn (“Bronson”, 2009) and Omer Fast (“Remainder”, 2015).


To stay on the cutting edge of the industry, every year EICAR, the International School of Film and Television, invests and updates its inventory of equipment and post-production facilities …

Camera Gear

For hands-on exercises and film projects, students in our bachelor’s program have access to a diverse range of cameras, both digital and film:

  • SONY PMW-F5 et PMW-FS7
  • Blackmagic URSA 4K
  • Super 16 mm with lenses
  • Panasonic DVX200 4K
  • Panasonic AF101, HPX 250, P2 HPX 500, P2 HVX 200, HMC 151, HMC 41
  • HD playback and monitor
  • Numerous prosumer cameras for quick practical work : SONY, JVC, CANON

Sound Equipment

The sound crews have access to various microphones, mixers and digital recorders.

  • Directional mics, lav and shotgun mics (Sennheiser, Røde…)
  • Sound mixers (Sound devices)
  • Digital recorders

Lighting Equipment

Lighting gear includes HMI, LED, Tungsten, Fresnel… and are used regularly in all hands-on practical exercises in cinematography and directing classes:

  • 575 up to 1,2kWatt HMI lighting units
  • 200 W LED lights equipped with fresnel lenses
  • LED PANEL lights
  • Tungsten units ranging from 750W to 2kW
  • 300 watt to 5K Lighting units with Fresnel lenses
  • Kino fluos

Post-production materials

There are 85 post production work stations equipped with the latest software available to students including:

  • Final Cut Pro
  • Avid Media Composer
  • Adobe CC, After Effects, Premiere


A variety of grip accessories are available to students for their hands-on exercises and film projects:

  • Dolly and tracks
  • Flags and nets
  • Lightweight grip gear : clamps, arms, stands