Saudi Film Summer School

La Fémis Saudi Film Summer School is an intensive training programme for aspiring young filmmakers from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. For six weeks in Paris, selected filmmakers were enriched with theoretical and practical filmmaking knowledge, and gained insight into the film industry through interaction with French filmmaking professionals. At the end of the training, filmmakers directed a five-minute film.

The programme took place in Paris, and ran for 6 weeks of intensive classes, all week long, during which trainees thoroughly explored the filmmaking craft.

Objectives of the programme

The objective of the programme was to teach the fundamentals of cinematic language, the principles of directing, cinematography and sound, and the steps and professional methods from shooting to editing. The aim was not to provide specialized technical training, but to involve trainees in creating works that allowed them to better understand the roles and tasks that are part of today’s filmmaking.

Trainees also had the opportunity to discover contemporary French cinema through the study of major French directors.

Programme

The programme was divided into two parts:

- Filmmaking: Theory
Classes were given by professionals from the French film industry in which the following subjects were taught: production craft, the work of a producer, co-production, funds and festivals, cinema aesthetics, French cinema, screenwriting, film fundamentals, script continuity, story breakdown, directing, casting…

- Filmmaking: Practical
While making a film (in digital) based on an existing script, trainees were involved in the various stages of the project’s development: rewriting, location scouting, shooting (1 day) and editing (3 days).
Each trainee made a 5-7 minute fiction film. Each trainee, in turn, assumed directing, camera operating and photography, sound recording and editing. For that purpose, trainees learnt the fundamentals of cinematography, sound recording and editing.
Throughout these exercises, the trainees were supervised by professionals who regularly teach at La Fémis.

Target

This programme was open to very motivated young filmmakers, native from KSA who wished to develop their practical and theoretical knowledge of filmmaking in France.

All courses were taught in English. The ability to speak, write and read English was compulsory.

Number of trainees: 12

Admission level: Students or young professionals who were highly motivated to make films.

Age: Applicants must have been between 21 and 33 years old.

Sponsorship

This program is supported by the Saudi Ministry of Culture and the Saudi Film Commission.