film school École de cinéma EICAR
  1. Home
  2. Orientation Guide
  3. Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking with an option in Screenwriting

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking with an option in Screenwriting

Overview of BFA

  • Type of program: Bachelor of Fine Arts
  • 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

电影制作艺术学士学位 — 招生手册

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 Screenwriting

The option in Screenwriting gives students, in addition to pursuing their required core courses, the opportunity to orient their final year project towards the craft of screenwriting. Screenwriting option students will write a pitch, treatment, and sample scenes for a feature length script supervised by their screenwriting instructor. They also have priority in all screenwriting 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 Screenwriting 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.


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.

You will meet directors, producers, actors, editors, authors, musicians, costume designers, directors of photography, sound designers and more. Our guests come to share their work, their stories and their experience. Films and film clips will be shown to illustrate their work.

Film School - EICAR Master Class Lecture Series

Guests we have welcomed in the past include:

  • Jan Harlan  – Kubrick’s producer
  • Richard Leacock – Founder of the modern documentary
  • Gloria Katz & Willard Huyck – Screenwriters (Star Wars, Indiana Jones, American Graffiti’s)
  • Douglas Kennedy – Screenwriter & novelist
  • Matthew Robbins – Writer / Producer (Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Guillermo Del Toro, Walter Murch)
  • Charlotte Rampling – Actress (Oscar nominee Best Actress)
  • Adrian Smith – Production designer (Full Metal Jacket)
  • Stephen M. Katz – Director of Photography (Blues Brothers)
  • Agnès Godard – Director of photography (Best Photo César for Claire Denis’s film Beau Travail)
  • Olivier Megaton  – Director (Transporter 3, Colombiana, Taken 2)
  • Randa Haines   – Director (Children of a Lesser God nominated for Golden Globes, BAFTA & Academy Awards)
  • Hervé Schneid – Editor (Alien: Resurrection, Delicatessen, Amelie, The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet)

See more


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 class work and final film projects, students in our Bachelor, Master and One-Year Filmmaking programs have access to a wide 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