Courses

The listing of a course description here does not guarantee a course’s being offered in a particular semester. Please refer to the published schedule of classes on the Student Link for confirmation a class is actually being taught and for specific course meeting dates and times.

  • COM FT 555: The Narrative Documentary Practicum
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: FT 402 B+ or Better. Or by permission of Instructor
    This practicum, designed for advanced film and television production students, focuses on the highly specialized filmmaking techniques used for the narrative documentary; that is, character-driven films about real people. The course also explores this tradition's rich legacy: from the Russians of the 1920s, through the CV movement of the 1960s, and on to the present day host of new films spawned by digital filmmaking technology.Course Prerequisites: FT 402 B+ or Better. Or by permission of Instructor.
  • COM FT 556: American Independent Film-Part 1 The Foundational Masterworks
    The course comprises one unit of a four-semester survey (each part of which is free-standing and may be taken separately and independently of each other and in any order, with no prerequisites) of the major achievements of the most important artistic movement of the last sixty years in American film--the independent feature filmmaking movement, in which American narrative filmmakers broke away from the financial, bureaucratic, and (most importantly) imaginative influence of Hollywood values and entertainment story-telling methods to create the most important works in American film--a series of generally low-tech, low-budget, DIY, personal-expression films, made and distributed more or less outside the mainstream exhibition system. This section of the survey focuses on the foundational masterworks created by the first generation of American independent feature filmmakers. These are the works that not only changed film history at the point they were made but that continue to inspire generations of independent filmmakers with their example. Since women have made some of the best and most important works in this area, as many female filmmakers as possible are being included. Offered in the fall of odd numbered years. The course comprises one unit of a four-semester survey (each part of which is free-standing and may be taken separately and independently of each other and in any order, with no prerequisites) of the major achievements of the most important artistic movement of the last sixty years in American film--the independent feature filmmaking movement, in which American narrative filmmakers broke away from the financial, bureaucratic, and (most importantly) imaginative influence of Hollywood values and entertainment story-telling methods to create the most important works in American film--a series of generally low-tech, low-budget, DIY, personal-expression films, made and distributed more or less outside the mainstream exhibition system. This section of the survey focuses on the foundational masterworks created by the first generation of American independent feature filmmakers. These are the works that not only changed film history at the point they were made but that continue to inspire generations of independent filmmakers with their example. Since women have made some of the best and most important works in this area, as many female filmmakers as possible are being included. Offered in the fall of odd numbered years.
  • COM FT 557: American Independent Film-Part 2 The Second Generation
    Graduate Prerequisites: consent of instructor.
    The course comprises one unit of a four-semester survey (each part of which is free-standing and may be taken separately and independently of each other and in any order, with no prerequisites) of the major achievements of the most important artistic movement of the last sixty years in American film--the independent feature filmmaking movement, in which American narrative filmmakers broke away from the financial, bureaucratic, and (most importantly) imaginative influence of Hollywood values and entertainment story-telling methods to create the most important works in American film--a series of generally low-tech, low-budget, DIY, personal-expression films, made and distributed more or less outside the mainstream exhibition system. This section of the survey focuses on the second generation of American independent feature filmmaking. Since women have made some of the best and most important works in this area, as many female filmmakers as possible are being included. Offered in the spring of even numbered years.
  • COM FT 565: Motion Picture Editing
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: FT353
    Graduate Prerequisites: COM FT 707.
    Given its central role in the filmmaking process, examining the way films are edited can reveal a lot about the inner workings of film and help students understand the art of filmmaking. Editing scenes from films, television shows, and other material in a classroom setting and then examining different versions of those scenes can help students become better editors and will help them evaluate/critique their future film and television work. The course is designed for students who have edited a number of exercises and films in previous classes. It provides an opportunity for students to develop advanced editing skills, while learning advanced digital editing techniques on the Avid Media Composer. This is an advanced editing class, and not a course on how to use Avid. By editing scenes from episodic television shows, and other professionally shot footage, students will learn how to select (and reject) material, where and when to cut, how to create pace, how to control what the audience sees and does not see, how to add music and effects to increase the emotional content, and how to use visual effects to enhance the impact of the material.
  • COM FT 570: Uncensored TV: The rise of Original Scripted Series on Cable TV
    Using series like The Sopranos, Weeds, and Breaking Bad as case studies, this course will examine the current state of cable TV with regard to industry, "quality," genres, auteurs, and the so-called "post-network" era. Students will approach these cable series with a critical eye as they work to connect industry, political economy, and government regulation to issues of social class, television hierarchies, and artistry. Students will also emerge from the course with a thorough understanding of how to perform television-focused research and analysis.
  • COM FT 571: Film Unit
    Extensive professional production experience on a continuous basis. Working as a team, students solicit and produce sponsored films and commercials for local and national clients and, under faculty supervision, perform all executive, creative, and technical roles.
  • COM FT 572: Streaming TV
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 303.
    This course focuses on the variety of ways we watch television beyond the cable subscription and/or broadcast antenna. Starting with VHS distribution and continuing through DVD distribution and eventually streaming and digital on-demand, the course will critically examine if and how these distribution shifts are changing television as we know it. This course will also make connections between these new distribution outlets and practices with antecedents and legacy industrial practices to historicize these shifts. In this class, we will explore ideas of on-demand television and its effects on how television is made and marketed, paying particular attention to narrative structures and assumptions about viewer attention and practices. Additionally, we will look at how taste, class, race, and gender are inflected through which audiences are targeted as cord-cutters or additional subscribers and which audiences and genres are left out of the streaming TV discourse. This course fulfills the additional TV Studies course requirement. Pre-req: FT303.
  • COM FT 573: BUTV
    BUTV1 is a credit-earning opportunity for members of BUTV10 & BUTV10.com, BU's student campus channel and website. Students work with at least one of the organization's productions or administrative departments. For undergraduates, one previous, not for credit, a semester in the organization is required, except with Faculty Advisor consent. This requirement does not apply to graduate students. All students must coordinate participation and be approved by the faculty advisor. 2 credits pass/fail, either semester.
  • COM FT 574: BUTV2
    BUTV2 is a credit-earning opportunity for contributing members of BUTV10 & BUTV10.com, who have previously earned credit by successfully completing FT573: BUTV1. Students work with one of the organization's productions or administrative departments. All students must coordinate participation and be approved by the faculty advisor. 2 credits pass/fail, either semester.
  • COM FT 576: Global New Wave
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 250.
    Explores the interconnected production and reception of selected European, African, and Asian New Wave cinemas of the mid-1940s through the early 1970s. These films experimented with form and style to challenge classical Hollywood norms.
  • COM FT 582: Writing the Narrative Short
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 310.
    Writing the Narrative Short class is an intensive writing workshop that focuses on the short form narrative screenplay. Students will write at a pace of roughly one script per three weeks, completing a minimum of FOUR (4) polished short screenplays: a personal film; a character driven film; and two "long shorts" of 10-25 pages
  • COM FT 589: Advanced Directing
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 526.
    The focus of this class will be on story creation, performance, and filming strategies using small crews and lightweight equipment, culminating in the production of six short films. Working from approved scenarios with a core group of actors, directors will explore character and story development through an in-class workshop process of improvisation. Once committed to script form, these short films will be shot with a small crew made up of fellow class members in pods of three; Director, Cinematographer, and Editor. The class will be limited to 6 Directors and 4 to 6 Cinematographer/Editors.
  • COM FT 590: 2D Animation Basics
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 201.
    From TV shows and feature films to webisodes, 2D animation is more popular than ever, but how is it created? This fun yet intensive hands-on beginner course teaches all the fundamental skills needed to create great 2D character animation the way it is done in the industry, with Adobe Animate CC. Through progressive lessons students learn basic drawing and character design, storytelling, and how to make characters walk, talk and come to life. We will cover acting, timing, and facial expressions; drawing "keys and in-betweens," scene composition, color backgrounds, and more. The history of animation and industry trends are also discussed. Students complete numerous projects including a fully produced animated short film that will be shown in the End of Term Screening. Many of the valuable skills learned in this class can also be applied to 3D and experimental animation, filmmaking, art, and broadcast design.
  • COM FT 591: Media Business Entrepreneurship
    We are living in the golden age of entrepreneurship. With the never-ending march of new technology and a global media marketplace constantly at our fingertips, there has never been a better time for media business entrepreneurship. Media Business Entrepreneurship (FT591) provides students with an inside look at how the world's leading media innovators are changing the way the world connects, shares information, and conducts business. Students will learn the skills and strategies needed to heed the call of entrepreneurship and take an idea from seed to fruition. Please join us if you are interested in learning about emerging distribution platforms, want to create new ways to inform and entertain, and maybe even have an idea you are interested in validating and bringing to market. Come create media's - and your own - future!
  • COM FT 592: Production Design
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 353.
    The Production Designer, along with the Director and the Director of Photography, is one of the top three creative decision makers on any film. Of the three, Production Designers are the least heralded; their work is so intrinsic to the storytelling as to be virtually invisible to the lay audience. In this course, we explore this quiet yet powerful source of creative power through collaborative projects, studio tours, presentations and individual design concepts.
  • COM FT 593: Introduction to Cinematography
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 353.
    Graduate Prerequisites: COM FT 707.
    FT593 is an introduction course to the key fundamentals of Cinematography: Composition, Optics and Lighting. This course also emphasizes on applying those fundamentals in a storytelling context and as tools of on-set communications. This is the gateway course to Intermediate Cinematography.
  • COM FT 595: Intermediate Cinematography
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 593.
    Intermediate Cinematography is focused on the required technical skillsets needed to work on a motion picture film set. Here, the concentration will be on training students to be proficient in working with the Steadicam, Gimbal,Dolly, Jib, Wireless Follow Focus, Wireless HD Transmitters and the various Lighting Fixtures. There will also be a class trip to local equipment rental houses to familiarize them with the industry equipment rental protocol as well as an introduction to the professional crew who work there. While it might come across as overly technical, the aim of the course is, in fact, to help students overcome all the technical handling and use them to heighten their visual storytelling capabilities. The course is designed to address the practical challenges when trying to achieve the best possible cinematic images through the design of advanced camera movement, camera techniques and lighting techniques.
  • COM FT 597: Advanced Cinematography
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM FT 595.
    Advanced Cinematography is an intensive hands-on and creative course that challenges students to draw from the knowledge they have gained in Basic and Intermediate Cinematography and their previous production experiences, and apply them in a structural yet artistic approach in creating a true cinematic image. The main objective of this course is to inspire students to create quality cinematographic images, not merely by just the creation of frame and light, but rather, by digging deeply into the subtext of the narrative and the subliminal elements of the music. FT597 will be conducted in four phases in accordance with the standard film industry practice:Training, Pre-production, Production and Post-Production.
  • COM FT 701: Media in Evolution
    This course examines how media businesses adapt or perish in the face of disruptive technologies. Students trace the history of the television industry and the emergence of new platforms to explore how technology has influenced consolidation, emerging revenue models, distribution options and audience consumption.
  • COM FT 702: Script To Film
    Exclusive to Graduate Screenwriting students (required in 1st year). An introduction to the relationship between the written script and the image on screen. Through in-depth analysis, we will study screenplays, films and the mind of the screenwriter in order to decipher the process of developing story from character, plot and theme. Students will be required to write expository papers and present their own analysis of a chosen film.