16mm Filmmakers Studio will focus on the theory and history of 16mm film production, and on writing for film. A thematic thread of the course this Summer—through discussions, guest speakers, screenings, and readings—will be the essential role of storytelling in society, ways of using challenging times and limited resources to spur creativity and innovation, and how and why artists should continue working during difficult times. 

The program will consist of two courses: Introduction to Film Styles (noncredit) and Screenwriting for 16mm (2 credits). 

Introduction to Film Styles (noncredit)

This course will introduce you to the many ways in which filmmakers use image and sound to communicate ideas and emotions.  Students will explore all aspects of film language—from shot composition to editing, from sound design to the use of color—and examine a wide range of film styles, genres, and filmmakers that span the globe and run the full history of the medium.  Using both synchronous and asynchronous formats, this course will allow students to engage in discussion of film with their peers.  

Screenwriting for 16mm (2 credits)

The class will introduce or strengthen students’ familiarity with the elements of screenwriting – including premise, genre, structure, plot, sub-plot, character development, conflict, dialogue, description, theme, motif, and formatting. Students will write an original, fictional short screenplay, a treatment for an original, fictional feature film, and the first act of an original, fictional feature screenplay. Using both synchronous and asynchronous formats, a supportive learning and writing community will be facilitated in which students can: interact virtually with other talented writers; workshop their works-in-progress; participate in group writing projects; watch and discuss films, screenplays, and other readings; listen to presentations about the elements of screenwriting; and interact with industry guest speakers.

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Program Dates and Costs


  • July 6–August 8, 2020 (including required orientation)
  • Virtual Filmmakers Showcase: August 8, 2020

Costs per student: 

  • 16mm Filmmakers Tuition: $5,121
  • Non-refundable program application fee: $60

Pre-college programs are not eligible for Emerson college's tuition benefits.

Learning Outcomes

As a student in the 16mm Filmmakers program, you will:

  • Learn the history and theory of non-synchronous 16mm film-making and other styles of filmmaking.
  • Gain extensive knowledge in film language and film styles.
  • Develop strong and practical story ideas, visualize those ideas in a feature-length screenplay.


16mm Filmmakers Studio classes meet on the following schedule for 5 weeks:

  • Monday-Friday: Live Schedule will be determined once all students have been accepted. 
  • At the completion of the program, students will have an opportunity to showcase their screenplay to friends, family, and peers. A Virtual Filmmakers Showcase is scheduled for Saturday, August 8, 2020.

Emerson College reserves the right to change any provision of this program at any time. The College specifically reserves the right to change its tuition rates and any other financial charges. The College also reserves the right to rearrange its courses and class hours, to drop courses for which registration falls below the minimum enrollment, and to change instructor assignments. 

Application Guidelines

Who Should Apply

16mm Filmmakers Studio: Students entering grades 11 and 12 during the 2020–2021 academic year and who are between the ages of 15 and 18 as of July 8, 2019 are eligible to apply. 

Application Materials

Each candidate for the Filmmakers Studio Program must submit the required online application, a non-refundable $60 application fee, and the following documents.

  • Student Statement of Purpose: In one or two pages, please describe:
    • what you hope to achieve during the studio program
    • an event you feel has prepared you for the pre-college program.
  • Essay: In one or two pages, discuss a film, a film director or screenwriter that you feel is most influential to your work. In a collaborative or team project, what role do you feel most and least comfortable taking? Why?
  • Teacher Recommendation: Please submit at least one recommendation, completed by a teacher or teachers who know your work. If possible, the teachers should know your work in the field to which you are applying.
  • Completed Video Project video link (up to 5 minutes in length) or script (up to 10 pages)
  • Transcript: Official secondary school transcripts
  • Official Test Scores: A copy of their official PSAT, SAT or ACT score.

International Student Applicants

Visit international student information to learn about additional required application materials and find out more about applying to pre-college programs.

Application Deadlines

  • Priority Deadline: February 1, 2020.
  • International Student Deadline:  April 3, 2020. 
  • We will accept applications through May 15, 2020. 

Admission to Emerson College's Arts and Communication Pre-College Programs is on a rolling basis. We suggest applying early, as space is limited. Admission decisions are made frequently.

For questions, please contact: