As movies become more dependent on visual effects, the demand for pros educated in the art of VFX has dramatically increased. Many leading VFX houses now recruit directly out of schools that offer such training. For its first list of the top VFX programs (unranked), THR surveyed recruiters, industry professionals and sources in academia. Tuitions range widely — from about $3,500 a year at Germany's Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg to $42,000 a year at Ringling College in Florida. But there's a common denominator: As Filmakademie's Andreas Hykade says, students are "learning by doing," through software training and work on actual productions, and by attending events like the annual Siggraph confab.
Academy of Art University
"Its school of Animation & Visual Effects offers BFA and MFA programs in animation and visual effects. Its Studio X program lets students collaborate on real projects — like the VFX for a low-budget indie by a then-unknown filmmaker out of USC. His name? Ryan Coogler. The project: Fruitvale Station."
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