​​​​Master of Fine Arts




The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Cinema is the terminal degree in digital filmmaking. The MFA program is designed for aspiring filmmakers who seek to become visual storytellers. Graduates of the program have the skills necessary to work in the professional film industry. This also is the preferred degree for those who wish to teach at the university level. The MFA program is a highly selective program that culminates in the successful completion of the MFA thesis project, a public presentation of the thesis project, and a defense of the thesis to the student's MFA committee. MFA students have opportunities to defray the cost of earning their degrees, through employment within the school itself, Graduate Assistantships that offer course credit and stipends, and competitive grants for producing thesis films.


In 2013, The Hollywood Reporter ranked DePaul's School of Cinema and Interactive Media one of the top 25 best film schools in the country.

In 2014, MovieMaker Magazine ranked Chicago as the #1 "Big City" to work in as a filmmaker.


Directing Concentration

Employing an artistic and practical approach, the coursework focuses on educating the next generation of directors. Utilizing the latest technology, students gain a thorough understanding of the process of cinema production from script to screen, refine their professional skills, and further develop their narrative style.

Producing Concentration

A producer's primary role is to build a team and collaborate with others in service of generating great content with strong creative and commercial merit. Our creative producing curriculum includes Business and Contract Law, narrative and/or documentary short story development, physical production, and a supervised Internship - either in Chicago or as a member of the LA Quarter. Students prepare a portfolio of projects throughout the curriculum including an MFA Thesis.

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Visiting Artists Series

Project Bluelight


Admission Process

The Graduate Admission process involves completing an online application, sending in your transcripts, and any additional information, e.g. letters of recommendation, certifications, etc.

Please visit our Graduate Admissions page for more information.

Faculty Perspectives

Cinema faculty

All of the faculty teaching in the Cinema program are working writers, directors, and producers with credits that include: ​Curb Your Enthusiasm, Saturday Night Live, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Wild Things, The Promotion, Buffalo '66, Spun, King of Queens, and the American Pie franchise--among their many other produced film and television projects and screenplay/pilot sales. Our production faculty​ continue to screen new films in prominent festivals around the world each year.

Production Resources

Online Learning


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Premiere Film Festival

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