2013 - Fall
RTF 178 INTERNSHIP IN FILM & ELECTRONIC MEDIA
RTF 178 is a one-hour internship course intended for students doing a second internship, i.e., those who have already taken RTF 330L. The purpose of this course is to provide professional internship experiences with television and radio stations, film, video, and new media production companies, governmental agencies and production units, audio recording studios, and new media industries. Students are responsible for securing their own internship position. Resources and position listings are available in the College of Communication Career Services (CCS) office, CMA 3.104 / (512) 471-9421.
At the end of the semester, you will be required to submit an Internship Report consisting of:
- A weekly journal
- Work samples or a portfolio
- Your evaluation of the internship
- Your supervisor's confidential evaluation of your performance
RTF 302 SIGNATURE COURSE • KARIN WILKINS
Despite the importance of the Middle East in our global and local cultures, what we know is limited by our media. By improving our media literacy, we can build on thoughtful critiques in order to question and improve our news and popular culture. Topics include contemporary politics in the Middle East as well as media analyses of news and popular culture on digital media, film, and television. This course is designed for first-year undergraduate students in small-seminar format. Assignments include writing three papers; oral presentations; and participation in class.
RTF 305 INTRODUCTION MEDIA STUDIES • JOSEPH STRAUBHAAR
This course focuses on the study of mass media. It surveys the cultural industries from multiple perspectives, including history, economics, regulation and social effects. It emphasizes the relationships among mass media, culture, and power.
RTF 309 COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY AND SOCIETY • SHARON STROVER
This course examines the context and significance of contemporary information and communication technologies and institutions. It offers an overview of the social, political and policy dimensions of these technologies, surveys their historical development and current uses, and highlights some of the significant social issues and conflicts they raise. Communication and sociological theory are used to make sense of the relationship between communications technology and social use, operation and development. Special attention is paid to dilemmas in contemporary communications policy and practice, such as protection of privacy and personal information, information ownership, free speech, and the role of communication in political processes.
RTF 312C GLOBAL MEDIA • SHANTI KUMAR
Talk of globalization and media is all around us, in the news, in the education system, in college classes, and in the employment sector. We know that there are important connections between media, globalization, and international communication. Whether these connections are between business, government, activist networks, or for-profit/non-profit international organizations, global media has an important history and a current presence that must be better understood in order to help make us better global citizens and consumers. This class in geared to help you gain background knowledge on these issues by first exploring global media from a historical/theoretical context. From there we can critically apply this knowledge to help us evaluate current debates, events and issues in global media such as: What do we mean by global media? How is it analyzed now and how was it viewed in the past? What are the cultural, political, economic and social implications of the globalization of media? What has been the impact of new media technologies? What are the relationships between global media and social change, international development, activism, and social networking? We will explore these cultural, socioeconomic, and political dynamics that impact the complex nature of human communication through lecture, media screenings, discussion and group work.
RTF 314 DEVELOPMENT OF MOTION PICTURE • PAUL GANSKY, COLLEEN MONTGOMERY, MORGAN O'BRIEN
This course will seek to build a multicultural history of cinema that surveys critical approaches (institutional, social, political, aesthetic, and technological) and stresses the relationship between films and context. It focuses on mainstream and alternative, North American and International, production and reception, and fictional and nonfiction cinemas in an effort to investigate the many voices and histories of film development.
RTF 316 HISTORY OF US BROADCASTING • TBA
This class is a historical survey of US radio and television broadcasting and related electronic media from the early 20th century to the present. We will watch and discuss representative programs and read academic texts, all the while maintaining a critical focus on the interactions between the broadcasting industries and technology, society, culture, politics and aesthetics.
RTF 316M RACE, ETHNICITY, AND THE MEDIA • MARY BELTRÁN
This course provides students with critical tools and an understanding of the main topics of concern and debate regarding representations of race and ethnicity in U.S. film, entertainment television, and media culture. We will explore evolving images of race and ethnicity from the era of silent film until the present day, how ideals of class, gender, and sexual orientation intersect in these dynamics, how various ethnic groups have participated in entertainment media production and consumption (and inadvocacy and activism targeting media producers), and other topics of study and popular interest related to race, ethnicity and media representation. While a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches will be reviewed, critical and cultural studies approaches to media studies will be emphasized.
RTF 317 NARRATIVE STRATEGIES • TOM SCHATZ
This class focuses on the study of how meaning is structured and perceived through the aesthetics of audiovisual images. It also surveys the various modes used in narrative and non-narrative storytelling in fiction film and television.
RTF 318 INTRO TO IMAGE AND SOUND • MICAH BARBER
This course is designed to introduce fundamental production concepts and techniques through lectures, projects, and lab experiences. The acquisition of technical skills will be a priority, as this course is a prerequisite to upper-division production classes. Emphasis also will be placed on developing a storyteller's point of view and the ability to create works characterized by simple yet effective visual, aural and narrative structures. Students will be required to attend hands-on lab sections and to complete one still photography project, one sound-designed still photo project and one sync sound digital video project.
RTF 319 INTRODUCTION TO DIGITAL MEDIA • BAHAA GHOBRIAL
RRTF 319 is a course that introduces the fundamentals of art and design in the context of digital technologies. Projects are produced using both analog and digital media. A number of popular software programs commonly used in contemporary artistic practice are taught, including Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Frame Thief, Macromedia Dreamweaver. Material and production costs are typically around $200. This course is taught every semester. Previous syllabi and information about the course can be found under the "teaching" link at: http://www.rasa.net
RTF 324F DEMOCRACY, POLITICS AND MEDIA • JENNIFER BRUNDIDGE
The focus of this course lies at the intersection of media use and democratic/political life. Here, we will investigate connections between media environments and various forms of political and civic engagement. What is the impact of 24 hr news networks and the Internet on political knowledge levels among the public? How do different types of media use affect people's willingness and ability to meaningfully participate in democratic processes? How important are social media such as Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit in setting the public agenda? How do the media influence political campaigns? With reference to these and other questions we will seek to more critically engage with ongoing current events.
RTF 330L INTERNSHIP IN FILM & ELECTRONIC MEDIA
The purpose of this course is to provide professional internship experiences with television and radio stations, film, video, and new media production companies, governmental agencies and production units, audio recording studios, and new media industries. Students are responsible for securing their own internship position. Resources and position listings are available in the College of Communication Career Services (CCS) office, CMA 3.104 / (512) 471-9421.
At the end of the semester, you will be required to submit an Internship Report consisting of: - A weekly journal - Work samples or a portfolio - Your evaluation of the internship - Your supervisor's confidential evaluation of your performance
FIRST CLASS DAY POLICY: Students must attend the first class day or they will be dropped.
RTF 331N INFORMATION SOCIETY: DIGITAL MEDIA • HOLLY CUSTARD
This course provides an introduction to and analysis of the Information Society; including its political, economic, and cultural characteristics. We will also examine technological innovations and how technological change, particularly among communication technologies, has impacted the historical continuity of capitalist economy and society, as well as the traditional policies and practices of government, institutions, and business. We will also explore information and media industries and the emerging technologies in mass communication. We will focus on how technological and political developments in the last two decades profoundly altered the products these industries offer, the markets they serve, their relations with each other and with policy makers, and their effect on the daily lives of various cultural groups. Throughout the course, we will keep a critical eye on the ends and means of government policy regarding communication and information technologies. Our goals in the course will be to: 1) Evaluate competing historical accounts of the emergence of new communication technologies 2) Examine information-based industries from the perspective of their economic and cultural impacts 3) Identify international and U.S.-specific dimensions of the Information Society 4) Explore the contribution of telecommunications, computers, and software to the digital economy 5) Analyze key debates over ethical problems introduced in the Information Age.
RTF 333 INTRODUCTION TO SCREENWRITING • RICHARD LEWIS
RTF 333 will introduce you to screenwriting, and the primary forms which writing for the screen may take: features, shorts, television and documentary. We will explore the basic theory and formal aspects of story, structure and character which are essential to all forms of screenwriting. In lecture and sections, we will carefully examine each step of the screenwriting process - from the initial premise, through character exploration and treatments, to writing the first draft - then apply those steps to the development of your own scripts. The class will also focus on critically examining produced scripts and films from a screenwriter's perspective, in order to learn more about the craft.
RTF 334 CHILDREN AND MEDIA • KATHLEEN TYNER
In this course, students take an historical look at the uses of media and popular culture by children and teens. Particular focus is placed on recent trends in the uses of digital tools, cultural products, information and media produced by children and youth. An archive of media produced for children will be explored. The course also examines the way that media effects research has been used as a basis for policy, regulation and social movements that seek to both expand and restrict young people’s uses of media over time. Throughout the course, students will be asked to analyze, evaluate and creatively design media products intended for audiences of children and teens.
RTF 335 TELEVISION ANALYSIS AND CRITICISM • ALISA PERREN
What is television today? What roles does television play in American society? In what ways are television’s aesthetics changing in the age of the mobisode and iPad? How have representations of gender, race, and class changed due to television’s transformation from a three-channel mass medium to a niche-oriented medium? How are the relationships between television producers and viewers changing in the new millennium?
In this course, students will learn the fundamentals of television analysis and be asked to relate these analyses to screenings. Television’s formal traits, as well as its rapidly changing position as a cultural, social, political, and industrial force, will be explored. We will take television seriously in an effort to become more critically aware viewers and consumers of the medium. Over the course of the semester, we will examine a range of U.S. television programs through different critical lenses such as style, genre, and narrative. In addition to this examination of television texts, we will analyze its production and reception. We will also consider the ways in which television presently is being transformed as it is converging with other digital technologies. Come prepared to engage – and debate– complex ideas and sophisticated arguments.
RTF 340 STUDIO PRODUCTION • DAN KNIGHT
This class uses the multi-camera studio to produce drama, music, or special events projects from script selection to screen. It provides the opportunity to develop skills such as lighting, sound, cinematography, script analysis, directing cameras and actors, and producing. Students work in teams, each team is responsible for at least one complete production. In addition each student serves in various crew positions for the other productions. This model is used on various program genres. Examples include: Saturday Night Live, Conan O'Brien, concerts, sports, daytime dramas, talk and game shows and sitcoms. The model is also useful for reducing the budget for interior photography on features or prime time dramas shot in HD.
RTF 341 AUDIO PRODUCTION: SOUND FOR PICTURE • ANDREW GARRISON
Sound Production and Sound Design are known as the “third half of cinema.” This course offers hands-on introduction to the fundamentals of sound production and post for picture. We will explore audio as a craft component of picture media and as a creative practice. Students will learn and apply production techniques to complete several project assignments in Pro Tools that will include sound design, dialogue editing, Foley, ADR, ambiences, creating FX, working with music, preparing for the mix, and your own basic mixes. Much hard work. Much fun. If you could take only one audio class on your path to filmmaking, this would be the one.
RTF 342 GLOBAL TV: ISSUES AND PROBLEMS • JOSEPH STRAUBHAAR
The globalization of national television industries and cultures, along with the digital convergence of broadcasting, cable, satellites, cell phones and the internet, has dramatically transformed media landscapes around the world in recent decades. In this course, we will critically evaluate the new programming and scheduling strategies that global television networks (such as CNN, BBC, MTV, TV Globo, and STAR TV) are using to migrate from television to a digitally-convergent platform of TV+ cable/satellite TV+cinema+ internet+ cellphones+ gaming. We will also examine how television audiences in different parts of the world are negotiating the changing relationship between “public” and “private” institutions and spaces in this new multi-platform landscape of digital media. However, we will also examine the continuing strength of television channels that continue in fairly traditional forms and how they compete in the new landscape.
The course will begin with an introduction to key concepts in global television studies, and consider how commercial and state-run systems of broadcasting have historically dealt with the distinctions of public and private spaces in media culture. The course will then focus on specific case studies from different regions and parts of the world to show how both a traditional television and a multi-platform strategy is being used by various media networks across a range of genres such as fiction, melodrama, news, sports, music, and reality television. Finally, the course will consider the new forms of audience interactions and participatory cultures emerging at the intersection of television and other media technologies such as the cinema, internet, cellphones and gaming.
RTF 343 ADVANCED DOCUMENTARY PRODUCTION • ELLEN SPIRO
This course involves intensive hands-on work in all aspects of documentary video production, in addition to critical investigations of a variety of contemporary non-fiction forms. Much of the semester revolves around producing a documentary (either individually or in a small group) and completing workshop projects, thus offering experience in project development and conceptualization, camerawork, sound recording, lighting and editing.
RTF 343 ADVANCED NARRATIVE PRODUCTION • KAT CANDLER
From script to sound design, students spend the semester completing an advanced video production (3 - 10 minutes). Emphasis is placed on storytelling, strong cinematic style, and production values. Students are not required to direct, but must participate in the key crew positions on various projects for full credit.
RTF 344M CG FOR FILM AND GAMES • BEN BAYS
In-depth study and practice of 3D modeling, surfacing, lighting, compositing, animation and visual FX using Autodesk Maya, Adobe Photoshop, and other programs.
RTF 344M INTERACTIVE DIGITAL STORYTELLING • KAREN KOCHER
In this hands-on production course, you will explore platforms for digital, interactive production, such as DVDs, open-source database software, Google maps and Flash-based media projects. Working with existing projects and creating your own, you will expand your understanding of how digital storytelling may impact the narrative, moving away from a conventional linear narrative and into a more user-driven, interactive approach. Projects produced in this course may be documentary, fiction or experimental.
Practically speaking you will learn about interface creation using Adobe Photoshop and experiment with a variety of disc and on-line based tools that may include DVD authoring software, Google Earth, Korsakow tool and Flash.
This is not an entry-level production course, but is intended to build on previous experience in either narrative or documentary production. Proficiency in Final Cut Pro or other editing software will also be very helpful. RTF 318 or 319 are required pre-requisites, but an entry-level production course and RTF 346 are highly recommended before taking this course. We will do a lot of hands-on work so comfort with the computer is essential. To learn more about interactive storytelling, see work from previous semesters.
RTF 344M INTERACTIVE MEDIA AND GAME DEVELOPMENT • PAUL TOPRAC; TBA
The course will examine some of the basic principles of designing and creating a game with an emphasis on game architecture and logical structure of the story. It is intended for RTF students who have little or no background in computer programming and who would like to explore game creation. Topics will include – logical planning of a multi-threaded story, manipulation of objects and characters, interactive game play, screen management and other related technical issues. By the end of the course students will individually or in small teams develop some small games targeted at hand-held devices such as the iPhone.
Prerequisites: For radio-television-film majors, the following coursework with a grade of at least C in each course: Radio-Television-Film 305, 318 or 319, and six additional semester hours of coursework chosen from Radio-Television-Film 309, 314, 316, 317, 318, and 319; for others, upper-division standing and consent of instructor. For this course, students are not expected to have any formal training in programming, game development or game creation. However, skills such as drawing, story creation, sound design, graphic design, etc. will be of value. Meets with FA 360 and TD 354T.
RTF 344M VISUAL EFFECTS & MOTION GRAPHICS • BEN BAYS
This is a production course designed to introduce and expand your knowledge of the world of motion graphics and special effects. Credits, transitions, greenscreen, filters, masks, mattes, all sorts of things. In contrast to the animation course, this class will focus on advanced compositing and techniques to enrich your video, stills, typography and to get exactly what you want to see onscreen. You will not be required to draw anything (complicated). Consider this more of a course in design than art. We will take the elements of design: line, shape, value, texture, color, direction, size, perspective and space and add one more thing to them: time.
RTF 344M WRITING FOR INTERACTIVE GAMES & MEDIA • SHELDON PACOTTI
Video games and other interactive media increasingly require well-crafted storylines and strong characters. This workshop is designed to give aspiring game writers the skills, knowledge and techniques needed to write successfully for the games industry. Through the creation of original interactive games, students will focus on such fundamentals as premise, character development, story structure, and the creation of multi-level worlds.
RTF 344N ADVANCED VISUAL EFFECTS • BEN BAYS
Students organize, research and create projects based on advanced compositing and visual effects techniques. Topics include Particles and Simulations, 3D animation, and Digital Matte painting.
RTF 344N GAME DEVELOPMENT CAPSTONE: 2D GAMES* • PAUL TOPRAC
The Capstone Game Development course brings together students from Computer Science, College of Fine Arts, and Radio-TV-Film to form small teams in which each student will contribute specialized knowledge to the group creation of 2D games for mobile, online, and social technology platforms. Students will gain a thorough understanding of the 2D game development process, through modeling of the environment and practices that are used in game studios. *If interested, please read instructions to apply. Consent of instructor required.
RTF 344N SPECIAL TOPICS IN CG • BEN BAYS
In-depth exploration of modeling and character animation in a CG workspace. Designed to provide a basic-to-intermediate level of familiarity with Maya by modeling for articulation, rigging, skinning and animating through various technical exercises.
RTF 345 BRITISH CINEMA • CAROLINE FRICK
This course explores the development of British filmmaking, from its earliest beginnings in the 1890s and global leadership in the pre-WWI era, to its 1990s resurgence and well-publicized commercial appeal. The course will investigate popular British film genres and the importance of government mandated film policy to the country's complicated media industry. The discourse surrounding "national cinemas" will structure the course, offering a prism through which to discuss regional filmmaking, the power of legislation, and Hollywood's trans-Atlantic shadow.
RTF 345 CHINESE AUTEURS: TAIWAN NEW CINEMA • SHU-CHING CHAN
Since inception China, Taiwan and Hong Kong film industries have separate
paths of development and emerged onto the world stage with their respective new cinema movements. Today, auteurs from the new cinema generation continue to play influential roles in Chinese language cinema co-productions, a formidable force with the rise of China market. Taiwan cinema has a strong tradition of art cinema and close tie with the literature field. Its production system enables both unity without and heterogeneity within. This seminar will cover the films and career path of four leading auteur directors
(Edward Yang, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Tsai Ming-liang and Ang Lee) as well as international award-winning professionals who are auteurs in their own right. We will see how these Taiwan auteurs work inside the systems of Taiwan cinema, film festival network, Japanese studio, French cinema or Hollywood conglomerate but develop personal style and exhibit distinctive Taiwan cultural sensibility.
RTF 345 HISTORY OF MEXICAN CINEMA • CHARLES RAMÍREZ BERG
This course is a critical history of Mexican film from the silent era to the present. Topics covered include major films, stars, genres, and filmmakers, the rise of the Mexican film industry, the crisis of the 1960s, and the rise of Mexico’s “New Cinema” in the 1970s and the recent resurgence since the release of Amores Perros in 2003. More recently, the course will look at the recent internationalization of Mexican film, exemplified by directors such as Guillermo del Toro making films in Mexico, Hollywood and Spain, and Alfonso Cuarón and Alejandro González Iñárritu, who moved from Mexican filmmaking to Hollywood then back again. Screenings will include classics of Mexico’s rich film heritage, such as Vámonos con Pancho Villa (1936); Salón México (1949), directed by Emilio Fernández and photographed by Gabriel Figueroa; Los Olvidados (1950) directed by Luis Buñuel; as well as more recent films such as Danzón (1991, directed by María Novarro), González Iñárritu’s Amores Perros (2003), and Mariana Chenillo’s Nora’s Will (2010). The course carries Writing and Global Cultures flags.
RTF 346 INTRODUCTION TO EDITING • KAREN KOCHER; DON HOWARD; OTHERS TBA
Whether you want to be an editor, director or producer, Introduction to Editing is an essential, hands-on course for any production student. By completing a series of narrative and nonfiction assignments, you will finish this course with increased confidence in, and understanding of, the seamless editing technique and the AVID software. We will also view and analyze film scenes to understand how editing contributes to meaning.
RTF 346E ADVANCED EDITING • ANNE LEWIS; DON HOWARD
This course is a further elaboration of the principles and techniques of editing students will have encountered in RTF 346, building a broader technical background for professional development. We will discuss aesthetic, technical, and practical approaches to editing and consider how they might best apply to some (provided) editing challenges. In particular, we'll concentrate on the development of editing styles that are appropriate to a range of material and creative solutions to editing challenges. Taught using AVID software.
RTF 347C BROADCAST AND CABLE MANAGEMENT • STEVE JENNINGS
This course is designed specifically to give an in-depth look at what is necessary to operate a broadcast station organization. The course will offer first hand information from the leading News Directors, Promotion Directors, Programming Directors, General Sales Managers, Production and Operation Mangers, and Chief Engineers in local television and radio companies. More specifically, the course will address the following:
- What does managing a leading news department entail?
- How do you promote your station?
- How does the revenue side of the business work?
- How do you attain syndicated programming for your station?
- What is involved in the negotiations for these programs?
- What does high definition television mean for broadcasters in the future?
Students will have the opportunity to interact with guest lecturers and hear how day-to-day operations work as well as learn about the unique challenges facing broadcasters in the future.
RTF 348 BUILDING TRANS-MEDIA STARTUPS • BURNES HOLLYMAN
There is an amazing set of opportunities in the trans-media/convergence space today for innovation on almost every front. This course will look at the video/television/IPTV and film, video game, mobile, interactive, advertising, animation/CGI, and music entertainment ecosystems and identify business start-up opportunities to mashup and create new trans-media entertainment businesses across content types, applications, services, platforms and infrastructure. The class is run like a real-world startup business, by an industry veteran, so a professional level of participation is required and expected. Think of it as your first job. You must play full out or do not enroll in this course. After getting a real world grounding in current industry trends, each student will dream up an entirely new trans-media business idea and then learn how to create an angel investor/venture capital or a crowd-sourced Kickstarter/Indiegogo pitch and final business plan typical of those now being used to raise real new venture money in Silicon Valley and elsewhere. Students can use the final business plan to either start up a new trans-media business venture or use it with prospective employers to showcase their innovative thinking in an industry setting. (Neither traditional business school courses nor finance/accounting skills are needed.)
RTF 351C INTRODUCTION TO 2D ANIMATION • GEOFF MARSLETT
This course will introduce the student to the art and mechanics of two-dimensional animation in film and in digital media. Weekly exercises will be required, with an emphasis on animation as personal expression.
RTF 359 ASIAN AMERICAN MEDIA CULTURES • MADHAVI MALLAPRAGADA
This course will examine diverse representations of Asian Americans in the US media by focusing on popular film, television, videogames and the World Wide Web. It will critically interrogate stereotypical images of Asian American identities, culture, and politics as well as representations that challenge and contest such stereotypes. In doing so, the course will locate the politics of representing Asian Americans in the US media within a broader historical, political and cultural context that includes issues of immigration, nationalism and citizenship, race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexuality and transnationalism.
RTF 359 WOMEN AND MEDIA CULTURE • MORGAN BLUE
This course introduces students to the critical analysis of women and media culture. Focusing primarily on commercial media texts mass produced in the United States, we will explore the dominant strategies used by the magazine, film, and broadcasting industries to represent women and women's issues, as well as to attract women consumers. In addition, we will examine how women participate in media culture via their roles as consumers and audiences, as well as fans of particular cultural texts. Although we will primarily examine media texts produced and distributed by the commercial media and entertainment industries, we will also explore how women have developed alternative media economies by creating their own cultural texts and practices.
RTF 365 SOCIAL MEDIA/CIVIC ENGAGEMENT • CRAIG WATKINS
Designed to accommodate 35 or fewer students. Course number may be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Advanced topics addressing media, communication, and society. Restricted to radio-television-film majors. Prerequisite: Varies with the topic. Prerequisite: Upper-division standing. meets with AFR 372E.
RTF 365 MEDIA INDUSTRIES AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP • WENHONG CHEN
Media industries have been challenged by large social forces such as globalization and technological advancements from analog to digital, wired to wireless, and desktop to cloud. Web 2.0 and social media facilitate former members of the audience to actively participate in media production. While legacy media learn to adapt to a new landscape, new media experiment with and search for viable business models and legitimacy. Great challenges bring unprecedented opportunities and risks for organizational innovations, entrepreneurship, and social change.
Drawing on literatures from media studies, management, sociology, and communication, this course helps students to develop a critical understanding of the media industries. We start with a survey of the media landscape. In the second part, we examine the social, political, and economic contexts in which media and culture are produced, distributed, and monetized. Special attention is paid to new media and communication technologies such as Web 2.0, social media, gaming, and mobile phone and apps and the implications of these disruptive innovations for media production and consumption. Cases in old and new media industries from different countries will be analyzed.
RTF 366D DIRECTING WORKSHOP • ANDREW SHEA
This workshop explores the role of the director in the process of translation from page to screen, focusing on the director/actor relationship, narrative structure and visual language. Assignments will include the casting, mounting and realization of dramatic narrative scenes. Special emphasis will be placed on the development of the skills necessary to communicate effectively with actors to achieve authentic and vivid performances.
RTF 366K INTRODUCTION TO DOCUMENTARY PRODUCTION • ELLEN SPIRO
This class introduces students to single-camera field documentary video production. Basic instruction will be provided on digital cameras and digital off-line editing. Individual exercises and group projects will be assigned throughout the semester.
RTF 366K NARRATIVE PRODUCTION • STEVE MIMS; ANDY GARRISON; NANCY SCHIESARI; AMY BENCH
The class explores the expressive potential of sound and image through the production of digital video and 16mm exercises and short films. It is an intensive workshop in visual storytelling and non-dialogue filmmaking. It is designed to build upon the fundamental production concepts and techniques that were introduced in RTF 318 and to prepare students for the advanced narrative classes.
RTF 366M INTRODUCTION TO 3D PRODUCTION • TBA
Intro to 3D Production is the gateway course into the new UT3D curriculum. Students will learn the theory and history of 3D, along with current production techniques and business/industry considerations. The course will include lectures, readings, and hands-on skill training, on campus and at the Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theater facility downtown. A final group project will allow students to work under the direction of the lead instructor, who will assign production and post-production duties and carry the project to completion. Pre-requisites for the course include RTF 305 and three additional hours of lower-division RTF coursework, and RTF 317 and RTF 318 with a grade of B- or better, and interested students must also apply directly to the program director for consent in order to be admitted. Instructions for this process are available from the undergraduate advisors or through the RTF website. Students must apply to be granted admittance to this course.
RTF 367K PRODUCING FOR FILM AND TELEVISION • TBA
RTF 367K will detail how things work in the supposedly noncreative side of the entertainment industry. The course will focus on the function and duties of a producer as he or she shepherds an idea through a project "life cycle": development, financing, pre-production, post-production, marketing and distribution. Lecture topics will mirror the project life cycle while students concurrently develop their own business plans/prospectuses for original film or television projects of their choosing. At the end of the semester, each student should have a complete and realistic business plan for a film or video project, one which is ready for presentation to entertainment industry contacts and financiers. Lecture topics will mirror the project life cycle while students concurrently develop their own business plans/prospectuses for original film or television projects of their choosing. At the end of the semester, each student should have a complete and realistic business plan for a film or video project, one which is ready for presentation to entertainment industry contacts and financiers.
RTF 367L 16MM NARRATIVE FILMMAKING • NANCY SCHIESARI
This course is aimed at increasing proficiency in production concepts and skills and to develop an aesthetic analysis of the production process in areas of directing, cinematography, sound recording, production design and editing. Specific instruction in technical areas will be offered in workshops and through practical application on class assignments. Students will be given the opportunity to produce an individual short 1-3 minute film and up to an 8-minute, group film. Students may elect to shoot final projects on digital cameras.
RTF 367P ADVANCED PRODUCING • TBA
Advanced Producing is a business oriented, hands-on, extremely practical, intimate class of only twenty students learning the parts of filmmaking that aren't writing, shooting, or directing. The very first class in Spring 05 set the bar very high for those that have followed by taking on a superb low-budget, digital film called CAVITE during its post-production as it prepared for SXSW. Over the next 18 months (and three more classes) it reaped critical acclaim, stormed the festival circuit, got a distribution deal, won the Someone To Watch Spirit Award, and shipped tens of thousands of DVDs. The Advanced Producing students received much recognition along the way as they learned the ropes. But that was just the start. Subsequent classes have pitched in on key post-production decisions then handled promotion, publicity and distribution sales for a series of other SXSW films including the documentaries JAM (2006), THROW DOWN YOUR HEART and OF ALL THE THINGS (both 2008). In 2007 the class garnered national coverage in the NY Times and LA Times for its involvement with a film that critically appraised Michael Moore called MANUFACTURING DISSENT, an international success story.
RTF 368 CINEMATOGRAPHY • PJ RAVAL
Cinematography is designed for highly motivated, advanced students of film and video, who have a strong desire to explore, test and experiment with different aspects of cinematography. Each final project plan will be worked out between student and instructor to best suit the interests of that individual. All students should come to the first class with a strong sense of which particular aspects of cinematography they wish to investigate. Presentation of final projects will occur at the end of the semester, with interested RTF students and faculty in attendance. Films and videos, both student produced and otherwise, will be screened and discussed throughout the semester.
All students must have previous first-hand experience shooting both film and video, and have a firm grasp of the basic principles of lighting.
RTF 368C ADVANCED DIRECTING • ANDREW SHEA
Dogme 95 meets Meisner technique in this collaborative class. Each student will co-direct a Dogme-style film, utilizing Meisner techniques to develop story ideas in the early weeks of the semester. We will adhere to a production code that is a modified version of the Dogme 95 Vow of Cinematic Chastity. The goal will be to create collaborative, performance-based works that emphasize simplicity and ingenuity in image and sound choices.
RTF 368S MEDIA STUDIES THESIS
Hour(s) to be arranged. Restricted enrollment; contact the department for permission to register for this class. Course number may be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Advanced media studies research. An independent research project based on primary data, resulting in a written summary of theoretical foundations, methodological approach, results, and a discussion. Restricted to radio-television-film majors. Prerequisites: Upper division standing and consent of faculty sponsor.
RTF 369 ADVANCED SCREENWRITING: FEATURE FILM • TOM WILLET; TBA
In this class, students will complete a feature-length screenplay (90-120 pages) by the end of the semester. In addition, they will read and comment on their classmates' work on a weekly basis. Incompletes will not be given in this class.
RTF 369 ADVANCED SCREENWRITING: SCI-FI/HORROR • BEAU THORNE
This workshop class will focus on horror and science fiction writing - two genres that have provided opportunities for countless new writers in the film industry. Each student will write a feature-length horror or science fiction screenplay and provide weekly notes on their classmates’ work. In addition, we’ll make a semester-long study of the current trends in each genre, reading and analyzing the biggest hits of recent years.
RTF 369 ADVANCED SCREENWRITING: TV PILOTS • BEAU THORNE
Each student will create a brand new television show (30 or 60 minute, network or cable) from the ground up: researching the setting and historical moment, inventing the characters and relationships, and ultimately designing the conflicts necessary to propel a show through multiple seasons. Students will then distill all of this work into a single showpiece episode - a pilot - that demonstrates the artistic and commercial potential of the new show. We’ll also be looking at a range of produced pilots (both aired and unaired) and discussing what makes the best of them work.
RTF 369 ADVANCED SCREENWRITING: TV SPECS • CINDY MCCREERY
Over the course of the semester, students will be writing a TV "Spec" script of an existing current half hour and hour-long show. Students will take an in-depth look at TV writing from the inside out where they will learn how to "break" an episode of show and also learn how a TV writer's room works.
RTF 370 ANALYSIS AND CRITICISM - FILMS OF CLINT EASTWOOD • TOM SCHATZ
This course examines the career of Clint Eastwood, from his rise to stardom in Sergio Leone's "spaghetti Westerns" in the 1960s and the iconic Dirty Harry films of the 1970s and ‘80s; through his steady development as an important filmmaker in his own right (and a distinctive “hyphenate” producer-director-star) in the 1970s and ‘80s; to his eventual status as a celebrated auteur since the early 1990s with films like Unforgiven, Mystic River, Million Dollar Baby, Letters from Iwo Jima, et al. While the structure of the course will be historical (and chronological), the main thrust will be critical and analytical, combining various approaches – principally star, genre, and auteur analysis; narrative and textual analysis; and theories of gender and sexuality. We also will consider how Eastwood's career as both star and filmmaker relates to the development of the Hollywood movie industry at large over the past half-century, as well as the concurrent development of independent American film.
This is a writing-intensive course (and carries a writing “flag”) and thus the brunt of the work will involve critical writing, including several short critiques, a major research paper and in-class essay final. There will be a moderate amount of reading for the course as well (roughly 20-30 pages per class meeting), along with weekly required screenings.