Variety Names CalArts One of the 2022 Top Film Schools

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Earlier this week, the entertainment trade publication Variety named CalArts as one of the top 30 film schools in North America.

Here’s how Variety described The School of Film/Video—with its programs in Film Directing, Character Animation, Experimental Animation, and Film and Video:

The school of film and video offers BFA and MFA tracks, and works in all modes of moving image and sound based artwork, including story and character driven narratives in live-action and animated form. Documentary projects in all forms are fostered at CalArts, as well as experimental cinema that is born out of personal connections between the filmmaker and the subject matter. The extended studies program offers summer courses, as well as classes in character animation and film directing, The center for integrated media concentration is designed specifically for MFA students whose creative use of technology, in particular digital media, goes beyond their primary areas of study. CalArts graduates Michael Rianda and Jeffrey Rowe won the feature prize at the 2022 Annie Awards for their critically acclaimed Netflix hit “The Mitchells vs. the Machines,” which they co-wrote and co-directed.

CalArts joins other recognizable institutions including University of California, Berkeley; Centro de Capacitación Cinematográfica, Mexico City; Art Center, Pasadena; University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston-Salem; and Vancouver Film School in Vancouver, Canada.

Variety explained how the editors chose the selected schools:

Our editors based the list on several factors: film schools already known to be strong contenders and named a top film school in America and outlier pitches. We explored each school to see what specific programs they offer in the film, music, TV and entertainment space. The Best Film School list is always diverse and represents programs in the United States, Canada and abroad. 

View Variety’s top 30 film schools.

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PUBLISHED BY Christine N. Ziemba

Christine is the director of Content at CalArts, responsible for the Institute's editorial in both print and online platforms. In addition, she oversees CalArts' social media accounts. In her spare time, she writes about the Santa Clarita food scene at

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