WHAT SETS HOLLYWOOD FILM ACADEMY APART
The dominant focus of the instruction of filmmaking, and to a large extent filmmaking itself, has evolved to a place where the roots and history of this art form is all but extinct.
Gone are the filmmaking days of the grand directors, coaxing the perfect dialogue to build the personal romantic spark and magic interaction between the Golden Era greats like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Cary Grant and Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart with anybody! Gone are the days of the epic film classics of such cinematic wonders, utilizing nothing but natural landscapes and actual actors such as Peter O'Toole in Lawrence of Arabia.
Today, the audience is fed nothing but a diet of computer-generated images of characters, foreground, background and the blending of all three. Most of filmmaking today does not take place on location, much less on the set, it occurs in a roomful of people sitting at computers manipulating images that are not even of organic origination. At least half of the American-made films are not even made in America, but in front of green screens and in computer laboratories in countries like Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary where there are huge government subsidies, far lower labor costs and rooms full of people sitting at computers creating what are very inaccurately referred to as "films". Most of the other half of American-made films are not made in Southern California, much less Los Angeles, much less Hollywood, due to the fact that a half-dozen states offer, on the average, 30% tax rebates to derive film business to their locations. In fact even using the word "film" in filmmaking has grown to be a misnomer. Most motion pictures are not even films, much less even shot on film. They are created in computers and the images that are not computer generated art by enlarged digitally videotaped so that they can be further manipulated by computer operators.
So to say that the art of filmmaking, in the grand tradition of bygone Hollywood and the grand golden era of film is completely lost, is a sad statement of unfortunately grand proportions and substantial accuracy. Likewise, there are no film schools around whose emphasis is not the creation of motion pictures and television through the use of computer-generated images and computer manipulated digital video images. Most of the instructors at most of the schools today would not and could not even be able to teach the management of legions of extras, actual people and traffic moving through the streets of a city, and a leading man and leading lady whose charismatic interaction brought chills to the fans and critics of the early classics. Instead, the classroom is merely a large room or warehouse filled with students sitting behind computers creating images and manipulating digital video. At least until now!
For the first time in decades and decades, students from all over the world, have a chance to come to Southern California and learn the grand and almost lost art of actual filmmaking, with actual film, actual actors, actual backgrounds, actual action and actual character interaction and forgotten art of on-screen romance and character relationships.
We welcome you to, HFA, Hollywood film Academy, where directors and cinematographers will work from an actual paper screenplay, setting up film cameras, lights and microphones and real sets in real locations and soundstages, and not creating fictional characters with nonexistent backgrounds shot against a green screen with a digital background laid in by computer at a date in the future by another computer operator. The Hollywood style of filmmaking from the golden days of yore is alive and well in Santa Monica California.
This is not to say that the students will not later learn CGI for animation and how to use green screen backgrounds to cut budget cost, but that will only be after they have mastered the classic and nearly lost art of "Hollywood Filmmaking" - to serve as their foundation to build upon and thereby create a new legion of directors, cinematographers, editors, lighting technicians, set builders and actors. HFA stands alone in the world in the instruction of the motion picture arts, and is certainly the last bastion of "filmmaking" in the grand tradition of the golden era of Hollywood. The students graduating from HFA will be highly respected by their peers and potential employers for the unique perspective that comes from this one-of-a-kind educational institute.