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An insight on the competitive film industry

Film is one of the most competitive industries to be a part of, primarily due to the large number of applicants. Photo courtesy of Flickr

Graduation season is over, and many students start wondering and planning on what to do after they get their bachelor’s degree. UTEP is full of students with big dreams. Some had found a way to accomplish them, but others need a little help to get there. 

One of the most competitive industries happens to be the one many students are interested in, film. UTEP students majoring in digital media production often incline to filmmaking. Those scholars also get to graduate with a minor in film, which can be helpful.  

“I would love to work in movie sets behind the camera,” said UTEP student, Jesus Sanchez. “I know it can be difficult to get there, but I still have time, so I’m not stressed about it just yet.” 

There are different opportunities to get into the film industry, one of them being film school.  

I think film school is a great way to learn the foundation of filmmaking, and get hands-on experience,” said UTEP professor, Nakisha Acosta. “It’s also a way to network and make lasting relationships that will help you in the future. Film school isn’t a must though, and people find many ways of breaking into the industry. Film school just gives you a head start.  

Admission to a standard film school is not particularly challenging. On the other hand, if you want to join a prestigious and distinguished school, it can be tough. Every year, there are a ton of applicants for film schools. 

The process to get into film school is easier at the undergraduate level. I applied for film school after already receiving my MA, and it was much more competitive at that point,” said Professor Acosta. “I applied to 3 film schools in Los Angeles, with UCLA being my top choice. They receive over 1,000 applications to their MFA graduate directing/production program, and my year they accepted 18 directors and 3 cinematographers. 

“Personally, I don’t think film school is worth it, since it’s very expensive and hard to get in,” said UTEP student, Natalie Garcia. “Some of my friends think the opposite and that I should apply, but I’ll try my best to get more job opportunities before I graduate.” 

As we all know, graduate school is not cheap at all. Apart from film school, there are other ways to break into the film industry. 

Internships are always a great way to get experience,” said Professor Acosta. Unfortunately, it may be harder to find those opportunities in cities that don’t have a large filmmaking community but sometimes it just takes some searching. 

The graduation season can be stressful for those who don’t have a plan after college. Even if it doesn’t look like it, there’s still time to figure out a proposition.  

If you want to stay local finding work with a production company would be the first place to look,” said Professor Acosta. “If you are willing to move, cities like L.A. and New York, of course, have so many opportunities due to the shear amount of productions taking place daily. 

For those future filmmakers not knowing what to do after graduation, there’s plenty of time. Some people want to be successful right after college, when in reality, doing great things takes patience and hard work.  

If a student is really passionate about film, then I suggest two things: first, practice every chance you get. Make your own short films by yourself or with a small crew, “ said Professor Acosta. “Second, watch movies! But don’t just watch as pure entertainment. Analyze the scenes. What is the director trying to say? What is the camera doing? 

The mistakes and long process is what it takes to accomplish big goals. Passion, enthusiasm, and resilience can lead you to great outcomes.  

Angelica Gutierrez is a contributor and may be reached at [email protected] 

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About the Contributor
Angelica Gutierrez
Angelica Gutierrez, Contributor/Reporter
Angelica Gutierrez is a sophomore at the University of Texas at El Paso majoring in digital media production and minoring in film. She is a contributor for The Prospector. She wants to integrate into the film industry as a writer and director.
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An insight on the competitive film industry