Denver Film School in Colorado
The Colorado Film School (Formerly the Colorado Film/Video Instructional Studios) was founded in 1993 and is located at 9075 E Lowry Blvd, Denver as part of the Community College of Aurora. The Film School’s vision is to deliver pre-professional training to students looking for a career in the film industry, providing a variety of certificates and degrees.
Students at CFS have gone on to work in films such as The Hateful Eight, The Amazing Spider-Man and Resident Evil: Retribution and more.
CFS Director, Brian Steward has been working in the film industry for over 22 years and has Assistant Director Credits on blockbuster films including The Italian Job, Spy Kids and The Ring 2.
Tuition fees at CFS average $30,000 to $50,000 for 3 years, plus housing.
There are six major courses at Colorado Film School:
- Writing/Producing – Students can expect to learn how to write screenplays, then collaborate with creative artists to form the final combined vison from pre-production to post-production.
- Writing/Directing – Majors in this subject learn the art of storytelling, focusing on scriptwriting, pre-production, actor performances, production and post-production.
- Acting/Directing – Students taking the acting/directing course are encouraged to discover character and learn techniques in acting while understanding how film works from a Director’s standpoint.
- Screenwriting – Majors in Screenwriting create short scripts that they are then able to market to producers and directors.
- Cinematography – Students are taught to visualise film while using a variety of cameras, gaining skills in dramatic narrative, documentary filmmaking and green screen videography.
- Post-Production – This subject prepares students to become editors, giving them the skills in post-production, visual and animated technology and sound design to adapt in a fast-paced world of media.
The University of Denver Department of Media, Film and Journalism Studies is based at the University of Denver Campus at 2197 S University Blvd, Denver as part of The College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.
With a range of undergraduate and graduate degrees in film and media, The University of Denver MFJS students can expect to engage in learning that explores media and culture in a diverse global society.
Assistant Professor Joe Brown is current faculty in the Department of Media, Film and Journalism Studies and experienced documentary filmmaker, focusing his work on the natural world and issues of social Justice. His work has been screened at Big Sky Film Festival and he is actively involved in The Colorado Environmental Film Festival.
Tuition Fees at DU average $50,000 per year, plus housing.
The University of Denver Department of MFJS offer Bachelor of Arts Undergraduate programs in:
- Film Studies and Production (Major) – Teaching narrative, documentary and experimental modes of screenwriting and filmmaking, establishing proficiency in camera use, lighting, digital editing software and sound design.
- Media, Film and Journalism Studies (Minor) – This program focuses on a virtual, communications driven world, giving students the chance to hone skills in media criticism, social media management and video editing.
- Other individual Majors are offered in Media Studies and Journalism.
Talent Agencies Denver
- Big Fish Talent – Managing talent for over 30 years, they represent actors, voiceover talent, promotional, commercial and print models as well as spokespeople.
- Cathexis Talent – Built on the purposeful mentoring of upcoming talent, Cathexis Talent Agency provides actors and models, photographers and videographers.
- Donna Baldwin Agency – Representing actors, voice talent, models (teen, child, adult) stylists, and social media influencers in Colorado.
- Eden Talent – Represents models of all ages for print, commercial, theatre, voiceover as well as hosts and spokespeople.
- Go Voices Voice Talent Agency – Providing professional voice actors around the world for commercials, narration, websites, television, radio, film, animation, video games and movie trailers.
- RAA (Radical Artists Agency) – Known as “The Actor’s Agency”, RAA represents actors for film, television, commercials, voiceover, industrials and print.
- W Talent – Wilhelmina Denver is an affiliate of Wilhelmina International, representing and managing models and scouting talent.
Acting Schools Denver
The Colorado School of Acting (CSA) is based at 9651 M.L.K. Blvd, Denver and offers the Elite Program for actors age 5-19 years old. Auditions are required for program participation and one-year minimum commitment is expected.
Elias Harger who, plays “Max” on Fuller House was an Elite Program actor at CSA.
The Elite Program provides study in acting theory, preparing and performing scenes, monologues, audition techniques at Level 1, as well as comedy structure, sitcom acting, character creating and improvisation at Level 2. Students at Level 3 can audition for the acting troupe CSA Company.
CSA offers weekly drop-in classes and workshops (no audition required) with structured warm-ups, acting news and exercises, in addition to improvisation and scripted material.
Other available resources
- Voice over classes for 18+ adults (voiceover production class)
- Online acting classes
- Summer Camp – Covering all aspects of film from concept to completion.
- Fees for Elite Program – $225 per month
- Fees for Summer Camp – $695 2-week program/$895 3-week program.
- Theatre Transfer Major (for students wanting to complete the first two years of a Bachelor’s Degree at Community College) – Students will gain an understanding of technical theatre and apply knowledge to a theatre performance or live event.
- Theatre and Events Technology Certificate – This program is dedicated to teaching students the fundamentals of theatre and lighting design, set and décor safety as well as the terminology within theatre and live events.
- Acting classes at Community College of Aurora are additionally held regularly and are encouraged toward Theatre Majors to enable practical knowledge in the Theatre world but designed to fit all levels of experience.
- CCA acting courses provide opportunity for students to explore cutting-edge techniques such as Grotowski Physical Acting, Roy Hart Vocal Technique, Viewpoints, Laban Effort Shapes, and more.
- Tuitions fees at CCA for non-residents average $11,000 – $23,000
- Additional Class fees around $400.
- Film/Video Production
Red Rocks Community College – Lakewood, Colorado offers:
- Technical Theatre
- Theatre Design and Technology
- Average fees $23,000 before aid.
Acting Classes and Workshops in Denver
Babcock Studios was created by Todd Babcock and is situated at 1221 Pecos Studios, Denver. Holding regular workshops and acting classes for beginner, advances, teens and adults, Babcock Studios offers:
- Private Coaching
- Line Running
- On Camera Auditions
- On Set Coaching
Interviews are required for placement.
Todd Babcock has a long career in TV, film and theatre with appearances in Grey’s Anatomy, Days of Our Lives and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Fees to attend classes: 6 week acting workshop for 18+ $300.
Denver Centre for the Performing Arts
Denver Centre for the Performing Arts is a non-profit Theatre organization based at 1101 13th Street, Denver and runs classes for all age groups offering:?
- Acting and Voiceover classes
- Video Audition Techniques
- Advanced Voiceover
- Character Crafting
- Shakespeare Text
Adult class fees range from $50 – $100 per 2 hours.
The Denver Centre for Performing Arts runs an annual Benefit Gala, Saturday Night Alive, with both performances and workshops throughout the event.
Rocky Mountain Conservatory Theatre
Rocky Mountain Conservatory Theatre was founded in 2007 by Anthony Hubert and is based at 216 S Grant Street, Denver.
Reid Ewing of ABC’s Modern Family is a former student at Rocky Mountain Conservatory Theatre.
The RMCT holds an annual Summer Camp where each student takes part in the end production.
Fees range from $925 to $1825 for one or two summer sessions.
Acting classes are held over a 5 week or 10 week session ranging from $225 – $575 and private coaching is available.
GMP Acting Classes at 7970 S Lincoln Street, Littleton allows students to participate in short films to gather experience for the future. Run by Kasha Fauscett and teaching skills in acting classes to kids, teens and adults through her production company “Galloping Metal Productions LLC”.
GMP offers “Reel Deal” program for acting reel creations to help actors get copies of their own work.
Classes focus on:
- Scene Writing
- Set Up
Fees are $100 based on one evening for 4 weeks. Reel Deal fees $400 for one 30-45 second clip.
Benjy Dobrin Studios was formed in 2006 to help aspiring actors, artists and everyday people to unlock their potential. Situated at 931 Santa Fe Drive, Denver, Benjy Dobrin Studios holds acting workshops and classes for all ages.
Classes are currently centred around:
- Public Speaking
- Sales Presentation Training
- Job Interview and Audition Skills
- Monologue work
- Cold Reading and Scene work
Fees range from $150-$190 for 4 weeks.
PEAK Acting Studios
PEAK Acting Studios is based at 6841 Yosemite Street, Centennial, CO and runs acting classes for adults, teens, tweens and kids.
PEAK is operated by Christine Reed who is a former SAG Talent Agent from Los Angeles and authored the book “Mom, I Want to be on TV” for parents looking to get their kids into the industry.
- FX Makeup
- Film/TV casting
Past activities have included workshops with Casting Officers, Voiceover Actors and Hair & Makeup Artists.
Registration fee: One off payment of $75 and classes from $175 for 4 classes.
Colorado Theatre Guild was founded in 1979 and was originally called the Colorado Theatre Producer’s Guild. It adopted its new name and broadened classes in 1999.
CTG provides daytime, evening and weekend classes and workshops to help attendees gain confidence in acting, auditioning and improv.
Colorado Theatre Guild supports production companies and artists within Colorado theatre companies where classes take place individually.
Lea Marlene Actors Studio provides classes and private coaching, specialising in the Meisner Technique.
Located Inside Cleo Parker Robinson Dance 119 Park Avenue W, Denver, Lea Marlene offers Conservatory Style training that integrates yoga into The Meisner Technique curriculum as well as the Young Actors Program.
Private coaching offers help in:
- Public Speaking
- Getting Over Nerves
Workshops are offered in:
- Fight Choreography
- Jui Jitsu Seminars
Fees range from $115 per hour for Private Coaching and $325 for Scene Study Masterclass.
Front Range Acting Studios are situated at 2828 Speer Blvd, Denver and offers introductory and advanced classes and workshops for people looking for acting skills.
Workshops include but not limited to:
- Advanced TV and Film (Invite Only) – Scene Study, Emotional work, Cold Reading, Camera
- Intro to TV and Film – Basic Skills, Script Study, Commercial Prep, Monologue and Head Shots
- Private coaching and video auditioning are also available.
Film Tax Incentives in Colorado
Colorado’s Film Incentive Program offers qualifying productions a 20% tax rebate credit and a State generated loan that can help finance a film’s budget up to 20%.
To qualify for the above program, the product must be a creative visual production including:
- Feature Films
- TV Shows
- Music Videos
- Video Games
- Any other form of major audio/visual production intended for theatrical, industrial or corporate use.
Colorado based companies need to spend minimum $100,000 to qualify and at least 50% of the crew need to be Colorado residents. Out of state companies need to spend $1,000,000 to qualify.
Expenditures can include crew and talent wages, pre-production and post-production elements, Special FX, travel fares, lodging and food etc.
To qualify for the loan program, the production must be approved by the Office of Film, TV and Media in conjunction with the Economic Development Commission and the final result must positively reflect on the State of Colorado. Local companies must spend minimum $100,000 to qualify for the loan and out of state $250,000.
Appropriate permits and approvals are needed for all productions and applications for the loan and tax rebate are mad through the Colorado Film Office.
Film productions that have benefitted from Colorado’s Film Tax Incentive Program include The Hateful Eight and Furious 7.
Film Festivals in Colorado
The Telluride Film Festival has been running for 46 years and is a non-profit festival occurring over Labor Day Weekend. With 4 days of cinematic emersion, around 40 films are shown across 9 venues.
Priced from $390 – $4900 for different tickets and passes, audiences can enjoy being the first to see up and coming films, listen to seminars, take part in Q&As and listen to conversations with three yearly-selected Tributes – recognised actors, directors and filmmakers in the industry.
The program for Telluride Film Festival is not revealed until the day of the program and invites intrigue from all over the world. Previous debuts include Juno, Brokeback Mountain and Blue Velvet.
Denver Film Festival has been an annual part of Denver Film cultural arts organization since 1978 and is one of their more major films taking place in November Annually.
Recently showcasing films such as The Aeronauts and Marriage Story, as well as a wide array of world cinema, Denver Film’s mission is to develop opportunities for diverse audiences to discover film through creative and thought-provoking experiences.
The first festival was held on May 4, 1978, and featured such films as Annie Hall, The Fury, Close Encounter of the Third Kind, The Hills have Eyes and Pretty Baby.
Ticket prices range from $8 – $80 for individual tickets and experiences.
Aspen Film Festival aims to enlighten, enrich, educate and entertain through film. For avid film fans and casual movie lovers, this festival has an average attendance of 30,000 annually.
Debuting films toward local audiences that may not have a chance to see them otherwise, the Aspen Film Festival caters for youths and adults with local collaboration to show quality films.
The festival has been running for 4 decades and runs late September with special guests and industry speakers in attendance.
Oscar Winning Bong June Ho’s Parasyte was one of the films to be debuted last year.
Tickets range from $25 to $400 for VIP passes. Aspen Film Members will receive discount on ticket sales.
Boulder International Film Festival runs in May over the course of 4 days, bringing filmmakers from around the world to Boulder for a celebration of Arts and Cinema.Names one of the “25 coolest Film Festivals” by MovieMaker Magazine, it has developed a reputation as one of the most influential young film festivals in the U.S.
Annually, the festival attracts around 25,000 people and is located at the foot of the Rocky Mountains and tickets cost around $475 for a full festival pass.
The festival is in its 16th year and showcases both full-length features and short films as well as events in virtual reality, activities for kids and after-show parties.
Colorado Film Commission
For all things film in Denver, the Colorado Film Commission provides a comprehensive directory of local listings for production companies, casting agencies, talent agencies and crew members.
They also provide information for location services, camera and lighting rental companies and video production equipment.
Their Website is www.filmincolorado.com
The Colorado Film Commission promotes various locations for out of state film companies to shoot at, with information about permits, film incentives and useful contacts in their directory.
Listing helpful links and facts about the State that will help with production needs, Colorado Film Commission is the directory for all film related needs.
Community College of Aurora (CCA)
CCA is a community college founded in 1983 with campuses in Aurora and Denver offering classes, online learning and degrees. Students are able to transfer to a four-year institution or University or receive certificates in their chosen programs.
CCA offers a variety of courses in the Arts, with a strong focus on Theatre helping students to explore their theatrical voice and culture.
Courses offered at Community College of Aurora in Theatre Department Programs are:
Further Community College Programs:
Community College of Aurora (Lowry Campus, Denver) offers: