Toronto’s film school is seeking applicants from the outside world, but its first graduates don’t seem interested in the traditional classroom environment.
Instead, they are turning to their personal social media accounts for advice, learning new skills and networking with peers in the community.
“It’s a bit like a college,” said graduate Michael K. Kuc, who was recently selected as one of two students selected for the first of four fellowships offered to students this fall at the film school.
“The job description is that you have to do a certain amount of work on a specific topic, but it’s also to learn and network with other students and to do research.
I’ve never done either of those things before, so it was kind of exciting.”
Kuc is part of a group of three graduates who, together with a group that includes another student from the film industry, are currently helping to run the Toronto Film Festival, which is set to kick off next month.
The festival, which takes place in the heart of Toronto’s Chinatown, will be the first major gathering of filmmakers, and has attracted some of the most celebrated filmmakers in the city.
It is also a chance for students to meet other film professionals in the area, and they have started to connect with each other through the festival.
“We are getting a lot of feedback from the community,” said Kuc.
“The festival is definitely helping us to be more open and transparent and more accountable to the community.”
But the most important aspect of the job is the social aspect of it, Kuc said.
“I think it’s really important that you connect with the community and you meet new people, because it’s important that people know who you are,” he said.
“And I think that’s really exciting.”
The Toronto Film School is an online training facility, which means that prospective graduates can complete a two-week course online.
The course involves three weeks of work, including film editing, writing and directing, and is offered through the Toronto Public Library.
While the film academy is an integral part of the local community, Kuch’s career has taken a different path from his classmates.
“They are kind of like my kids,” said his brother, Matthew.
“They are all like my younger brothers, and I’ve seen how they are different.”
The Kucs graduated from the University of Toronto in 2003, and now live in Ottawa.
Matthew is an adjunct instructor at the Canadian Film Institute, and he and his wife, Kaela, have three children: two girls and a boy.
“So the family is a bit of a double-edged sword,” Matthew said.
But his brother says the school is the perfect place for him to develop his career as a filmmaker.
“Being able to work with like-minded people, and to learn from and work with students that are just as passionate about filmmaking as I am,” he added.
“And I can also learn from them and work on their ideas and techniques and how to be a better filmmaker.”
The three graduates are among about 400 applicants from around the world who are currently applying to the school.
In the past year, they have also been interviewed by filmmakers such as Adam McKay, John Clements and Josh Coen, among others.
“There’s a ton of really good people applying,” said Matthew.
He said he hopes to be able to connect more with the students through the next two years, but he has a lot to learn before he can even contemplate working on a film.
“But it’s definitely exciting, and it’s going to be fun,” he promised.