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WATCH: Specs Howard Opens New Film School in Farmington Hills

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Local News / Business

Friday, 26 June, 2009 3:32 PM

Specs Howard Opens New Film School in Farmington Hills

Photo credit: Specs Howard / Tanner Friedman

From left to right: Lisa Zahodne, Specs Howard School President & COO; Char Kernen, Specs Howard School CFO; Jonathan Liebman, Specs Howard School President & CEO; Specs Howard, Specs Howard School Founder; Steve Julin, Specs Howard School Director of Curriculum; Marty Liebman, Specs Howard School Corporate Vice President.

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. -- If you're looking for a job in Michigan's fast-growing film industry, this is the place for you. Specs Howard, known for its radio and television programs, has opened a new film school in Farmington Hills. The campus is located within the studio one lot, Michigan's only Hollywood-style film production lot. Everything is nestled in one location, on a street called Industrial Drive, just off Halsted Road north of Nine Mile Road. Specs Howard is offering Introduction to Film and Advanced Film Editing workshops here.

On Location Film Workshops will begin on July 13 and 21 at Studio Center. Grace & Wild, Detroit Power & Light and Fletcher Camera are all located next door and will supply the equipment for students in the program. Applications are currently being accepted for both programs.

"We're very excited now that the film industry has come to Michigan," said Jonathan Liebman, Chairman and CEO of Specs Howard. "A real opportunity for people who have these skills to work on film sets, doing everything behind the scenes and helping out. Thousands of jobs are going to be needed and we are very happy to be a part of it collaborating with Grace & Wild with their campus and with all these major full-scale Hollywood motion pictures coming here to Detroit. It was just the perfect location because they've got all the equipment here, dollies, the lights, the cameras, the equipment, the editing software. We've got the school know how so it was just a perfect marriage."

The Introduction to Film program runs for eight weeks for a total of 84 clock hours. Students will learn how to identify and use tools in film production, use film software to assist in scheduling and budgeting. They will learn how to load a film magazine, shoot a digital film, light a basic scene and edit on a non-linear editing system.

The Advanced Editing program runs for seven weeks for a total of 56 clock hours. Students will learn how to launch and navigate Final Cut Pro, capture media and manage content and add edits to a sequence. They will learn how to trim an edit by rolling or rippling, understand additional tools editors use in the edit suite, add and fine-tune filters and mix audio and edit dialog.

"I've got 30 years in the power industry, things are not bad per say for me but always good have a future to look forward to," said Thomas Batts of Columbus, Mich., who's planning on signing up for the new film program. "This is certainly a good option right now in Michigan with the tax incentives and all of the filming that's being done here. I'm excited about it. I'd like to get involved. I've got to set up an appointment and see how it goes. I've got some friends that are in the industry. I've worked a bit with them. It would be nice to have a credential with my work experience. That's why I'm looking forward to this."

Workshops will teach students everything they need to know to get a job in the film industry. They will learn pre-production planning and scheduling, breaking down a script, fundamentals of filming a basic scene, principles of editing and hands-on training with equipment.

Specs Howard recently moved into the campus of Studio Center, Michigan's only Hollywood-style film production lot. Recent productions being edited at Studio Center include Stone, starring Robert De Niro and Ed Norton; The Irishman, starring Val Kilmer and Christopher Walken; The Oogieloves, produced by Kenn Viselman, mastermind of The Teletubbies; High School, starring Adrien Brody and MIchael Chiklis; Miss January, starring Kim Cattrall and Brian Dennehy; and Prayers for Bobby, starring Sigourney Weaver.

"I'll be teaching P.A. Bootcamp, Screenwriting and a third class which escapes me at the moment," said Chris Whitworth, a newly hired professor, who's originally from Hollywood. "With a lot of the other film schools, the other film schools teach you the basics without really going into any detail. Specs Howard gives you the full view along with the basics. They help you get more in-depth, they give you more time with researching a lot of the material and they basically help you along the way. A lot of other film schools are about getting you in and getting you out. Specs Howard gets you in, helps you out and nurture you along the way."

Students who are attending or are graduates from Specs Howard's radio or television programs will receive a discount to enroll in the new film workshops.

For more information or to enroll, visit www.specshoward.edu/onlocation/index.htm.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Steve Julin, Director of Curriculum Development, speaks to attendees during an open house on June 24, 2009

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Staff members from Specs Howard are introduced

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Steve Julin outlines the Intro to Film and Advanced Editing workshops

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / AMERICAJR.com

Four programs offered by Specs Howard

 

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PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Attendees watch a presentation inside the new Specs Howard Film School.

 

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