Film and Media Studies
Assistant Professors HASKELL, KRZYCH, NELSON; Professor GIUFFRE (Director)
Film and media studies is increasingly essential to a rigorous liberal arts education. Our program integrates critical studies with creative practice, preparing students to understand moving images, harness media technology, and participate actively in a swiftly changing media landscape. Students study cinema and media history and theory, while pursuing creative work in a variety of forms, including fiction and documentary film, screenwriting, radio, television, video games and other digital technology. This cross-disciplinary major incorporates courses in art, literature, sociology, philosophy, music, theater, dance, and global cinema. Building on Colorado College’s history of innovation in liberal arts education, the Film and Media Studies Program produces students who are engaged thinkers, thoughtful and collaborative practitioners, and who have achieved success in film and media industries as well as many other fields.
Film and Media Studies (14 Units)
Core Courses (3 units)
FM101 Introduction to Film Studies
FM102 Basic Filmmaking
FM201 Media Theory and Cultural Studies
Genre and History (2 units)
FM300 Film History and Theory
And one of the following:
FM200 Topics in Film Genre and History
TH/DA228 Experimental and Expanded Cinema
FS232 The Films of Alfred Hitchcock
FS244 American Film Comedy
FM330 On Location: Hollywood
Interdisciplinary Arts (1 unit)
EN225 Introduction to Shakespeare
EN250 Introduction to Literary Theory
EN283 Beginning Fiction Writing
EN285 Beginning Creative Nonfiction Writing
FM212 Writing for Performance
FM115 Fundamentals of Theatrical Design (also TH110 Fundamentals of Performance Design)
FM216 Video Dance
FM304 Shakespeare’s Tragedies on Film
MU235 Stage to Screen
MU301 Music Composition
TH101 Acting I: Introduction
Form and Filmmaking (2 units)
FM210 Topics in Filmmaking
FM302 Advanced Filmmaking
FM240 Directing the Fiction Film
FM260/360 The CC Film Institute (1 unit of Form & Filmmaking credit + 1 unit of Elective credit)
FM310 Advanced Topics in Filmmaking
FM312 Documentary Form and Filmmaking
Advanced Media Theory (1 unit)
FM301 Advanced Theory and Research Methods
Electives (3 units, no more than two of which may be at the 100 level)
AH112 Introduction to Art History (1 unit of FM credit only)
AS102 Introduction to Two-Dimensional Arts
AS115 Basic Graphics
AS116 Introduction to Digital Practices
AS226 Book and Book Structure
AS317 Advanced Photography
EN275 The Graphic Novel
EN286 Topics in Creative Writing
FM103 Art and Society
FM105 Creativity: Theory and Practice
FM203 Media and Psychoanalysis
FM206 Topics in Film and Media Studies
FM214 Intermediate Performance Design
FM215 Independent Work in Film and Media Studies
FM217 Introduction to Journalism
FM218 New Media, Ethics, and Journalism
FM225 Topics in Media Practice
FM303 Philosophy of Technology
FM305 Advanced Topics in Film and Media Studies
FM307 Queer Performance and Body Politics
FM315 Advanced Independent Work in Film and Media Studies
TH/DA218 Costume Design
TH/DA326 Performance Studies
Any courses from the film and media studies major categories (Genre and History, Interdisciplinary Arts, Form
Thesis (2 units)
FM400 Independent Film, Filmmaking, and the Sundance Film Festival or FM405 Senior Seminar
FM401 Senior Project: Independent Thesis (Essay) or FM402 Senior Project: Independent Thesis (Film)
Senior thesis projects must be proposed in writing during the spring of the junior year. To make a fiction film for the thesis, an approved FM course in writing for the screen or FM 202 (Screenwriting) and FM 302 (Advanced Filmmaking) are required and must be completed before the senior year. To make a documentary film for the thesis, an approved course in documentary filmmaking or FM 312 (Documentary Form and Filmmaking) and FM 302 (Advanced Filmmaking) are required and must be completed before the senior year. To write a screenplay for the senior thesis, FM 202 (Screenwriting) and another approved course in creative prose writing are required and must be completed before the senior year.
Film and Media
- FM101 Introduction to Film Studies
Film in its formal dimensions, narrative and non-narrative (documentary, experimental). How meaning and pleasure are created visually. Emphasis on film style: the shot, mise-en-scene, cinematography, editing (montage) and sound.
1 unit — Butte, Germen, Krzych
- FM102 Basic Filmmaking
An introduction to the art and craft of making films. This course provides an opportunity to produce a short video worthy of becoming a part of your artistic or professional portfolio. The first two assignments are warm-ups for the final and will give you a chance to get used to the equipment and refine your skills in cinematography, editing, and project planning.
1 unit — Haskell, Lowen, Nelson
- FM103 Art and Society
Examines the influence of art on society and of society on art, including the use of art as propaganda and social protest, the social sources of creativity, the relation between artists and audiences, the roles of patrons and critics, and the workings or arts organization.
1 unit — Giuffre
- FM105 Creativity: Theory and Practice
Examines creativity from both a theoretical and a practical standpoint. The course is divided into three sections. The first explores theoretical material on creativity as an individual process and practical exercises on generating creative material. The second examines creativity as a product of social groups, especially as this relates to the issue of 'craft'. The third focuses on creativity as it is tied to particular times and places and practical issues of making creative products public. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM115 Fundamentals of Theatrical Design
Basic theatrical design and technical theatre, its vocabulary, theory and application in the areas of technical direction, sound, lighting, set and costume design. A foundation course with emphasis placed on understanding the collaborative nature of technical theatre in production. Limited to 14. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM200 Topics in Film Genre and History
Studies the form of a single film genre, auteur, or historical era and its development over time. Possible genres include science fiction, horror, the musical, melodrama, documentary, comedy, and “independent” film, among others. May include studies of specific auteurs or of national cinemas beyond the US.
1 unit — Germen, Hughes, Karlekar, Minervini
- FM201 Media Theory and Cultural Studies
Examines contemporary media and its effects on our understanding and experience of culture and society. In-depth reading of influential theories in the disciplines of contemporary film and media theory, Cultural Studies, and technology studies, as well as close analysis of visual media (television, film, web pages, and interactive technology). Group projects and analytical writing assignments will emphasize both formal and ideological analysis of media.
1 unit — Karlekar
- FM202 Screenwriting
Examines the fundamentals of screenwriting: theme and meaning, structure, narrative, dialogue, character development, and revision. Students will read, analyze, and discuss the screenplays for produced films; develop and pitch their own story ideas; and plan, write, and revise, by the end of the course, a significant screenplay project.
1 unit — Sturman
- FM203 Media and Psychoanalysis
Considers the status of desire and subjectivity in the contemporary media landscape, a setting in which failure often has become a new means for success. How can we judge the aesthetic value of contemporary media when failure may ensure, rather than prevent, profitability? Is there any possibility for an ethics of media when nothing is off limits? To what extent can the psychoanalytic concept of desire be applied to and extended by the aesthetics of new media?
1 unit — Krzych
- FM206 Topics in Film and Media Studies
1 unit — Germen, Holst, Karlekar, Lewis
- FM208 Aesthetics
This course deals with the creation and appreciation of works of the imagination, including such questions as: what is art? how are we to evaluate works of art? and how does art enrich our lives? (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM210 Topics in Filmmaking:
Introductory course in specific film making techniques and genres, such as Stagecraft for Film, Documentary Film making, Film and Video Animation.
1 unit — Kohout, Nelson
- FM212 Writing for Performance
Fundamentals Identifies techniques utilized by writers of performance, ranging from slam poets to monologists to playwrights. Script and poem excerpts as well as video and audio samples will serve as the basis for in-class conversations around craft. Students will embark on a series of short solo and group writing exercises, trying their hand at a myriad of performance writing forms. Selected student work of merit will be presented in a final public staged reading. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM214 Intermediate Performance Design
Intermediate work in performance design with an emphasis on the emergence of new approaches and innovations in scenic and performance design. Integrates traditional visual languages of the stage with the digital arts. Explores spatial designs for dance, performance installations and the theatrical stage. Includes model making, drawing, drafting and digital/video design programs. (Not offered 2018-19).
Prerequisite: Drama 110 or consent of instructor.
- FM215 Independent Work in Film and Media Studies
1 unit — Krzych
- FM216 Video Dance
Introduction to creating dance specifically for the video medium, also known as video dance. Investigates ways that choreographers might use video technology as a creative tool. Aspects include production of video, audio, and choreography with the aim of fusing these elements.
1 unit — Herminjard
- FM217 Introduction to Journalism
Basic skills of the discipline, focusing primarily on news, analysis, feature and editorial writing (including research, fact-checking, interviewing), but dealing also with editing, layout, journalistic ethics, libel laws. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM225 Topics in Media Practice
Study and practice of forms of media-making beyond film and video. Possible topics include interactive storytelling, radio journalism, podcasting, and new media, among others. Includes critical reading and writing with an emphasis on applied projects.
- FM240 From Script to Screen: Directing the Fiction Film
Examines the processes of taking a script to screen. Students develop, cast, plan, direct, and edit short fiction films based on extant material, working in collaborative teams and alternating crew roles. Topics addressed include writing for the screen; story analysis; the role of directorial vision; casting; working with actors; cinematic language and shot design; camera, lighting, sound; production design and mise-en-scène; and editing theory and practice. The course culminates in an evening screening of the student films. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM250 Videogames, Aesthetics, Culture
Examines the various ways in which videogames intersect with and borrow from other modes of play, performance and artistic/cultural/political expression. Begins with a survey of videogames history and the major concepts and debates surrounding the emerging field of game studies. Then considers the aesthetic intersections between videogames and cinema, both in popular forms of 'machinima' aid in more experimental practices. Finally, examines the various ways in which videogames operate throughout popular culture: in the emerging field of 'persuasive' or political games, as allegories of digital culture, and as agents in the development of individual and collective identity. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM300 Film History and Theory
Film in its material, historical and theoretical dimensions, from its beginnings to the present. Growth of the film industry; the American studio system; European avant-garde cinema; world cinema; auteurism; film and popular culture; problems of genre. Film theory: the nature of the medium; its major theorists - Griffith, Eisenstein, Arnheim, Bazin, Kracauer, Metz, Mulvey, etc.
Prerequisite: Film and Media Studies 101.
1 unit — Price, Sarchett
- FM301 Advanced Theory and Research Methods
In-depth study of contemporary theoretical approaches to film, media, or technology. Topics vary from year to year. Course assignments place special emphasis on analytical writing and scholarly research.
Prerequisite: Film and Media Studies 300.
1 unit — Krzych
- FM302 Advanced Filmmaking
Emphasizes control of all aspects of the visual experience in service of motion picture storytelling. Acquaints students with advanced digital filmmaking techniques, including mattes, special effects, green screen compositing, and 3D animation, as well as the use of manual cameras, more sophisticated lighting methods, and motivated camera movement. Analyzes the concepts, language, and methods of film expression and stresses the processes of collaboration, critique, and revision. Culminates in a public screening of student work.
- FM303 Philosophy of Technology in Film and New Media Studies
Explores the ways in which technology serves as a compromise between mind and matter. Technology may begin as an idea in the mind of an inventor, but technologies only come into existence through unpredictable processes that involve historical, cultural, and environmental limitations. In those moments when technology begins to operate unpredictably, independently of its inventors or intended purposes, it opens up possibilities for philosophical insights into culture, society, and human subjectivity. Investigates examples in film and new media, including cybernetics, special effects, digital cinema, and virtual reality. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM304 Shakespeare's Tragedies on Fil
(Not offered 2018-19).
- FM305 Advanced Topics in Film and Media Studies:
Studies in a wide array of topics related to film history, theory, and genres.
1 unit — Germen, Krzych, Scheiner
- FM307 Queer Performance and Body Politics
Examines how performances since 1960 by queer artists have challenged conventional ideas about the body, sexuality and selfhood. Uses readings by theorists such as Michael Foucault, Michael Warner, and Jose Esteban Munoz to identify strategic positions adopted by artists working in literature, film, drama, musical theatre, dance and performance art. (Not offered 2018-19).
- FM310 Advanced Topics in Filmmaking:
Work in specific genres or with specific techniques of film and video making for advanced students.
Prerequisite: Film and Media Studies 102.
1 unit — Haskell
- FM312 Documentary Form and Filmmaking
Students create their own short documentaries while examining the history, codes, and conventions of the feature documentary film. Topics include narrative techniques, questions of form and genre, documentary ethics, interview methods, documentary cinematography, archival imagery, fair use/copyright, and editing rhythm and pacing, among others. Student documentaries are showcased in an end-of-course screening.
Prerequisite: Film and Media Studies 102.
1 unit — Nelson
- FM313 Advanced Video Art
(Not offered 2018-19).
- FM315 Advanced Independent Work in Film and Media Studies
- FM330 On Location: Hollywood
Provides a hands-on overview of the history and of the creative, technological, aesthetic and business practices of the Hollywood entertainment industry, from its inception through the present day. Taught in Los Angeles. (Not offered 2018-19).
Prerequisite: consent of instructor.
- FM400 Independent Film, Filmmaking, and the Sundance Film Festival
Upper-level intensive seminar course engages film theory, history, and practice through the lens of the Sundance Film Festival. A week of intensive screening and discussion at Sundance inspires further critical and creative work on campus, with an emphasis on collaborative practices.
Prerequisite: consent of instructor.
1 unit — Nelson
- FM401 Senior Project: Independent Thesis (Essay)
Advanced study of a topic, chosen by the student and approved by the program, with student research and writing directed by an individual faculty member. The essay may take the form of a traditional, written essay or a video essay
Prerequisite: Film Studies 315 or Film and Media Studies 301.
1 unit — Krzych
- FM402 Senior Project: Independent Thesis (Film)
Advanced project, chosen by the student and approved by the program, with student work directed by an individual faculty member, culminating in a short fiction film, short documentary film, or screenwriting project, accompanied by a written critical analysis.
1 unit — Haskell, Nelson
- FM405 Senior Seminar
Topics vary from year to year. May include preliminary work on the senior thesis project, including research, bibliography, and individual and group screenings in film/media relevant to the thesis. (Not offered 2018-19).