Explore techniques to lead, inspire, and direct the cast and crew's creative energies.

There are no available registration dates at this time.

NOTE: This Course will be Held in an Online Format using the Zoom Platform.

The guiding force of any narrative film is the director. This intimate and immersive weeklong course is for emerging film directors interested in the craft, process and techniques of directing.

As a director, everyone looks to you for the answers.  Everyone. Your actors require you to be any combination of mother, father, therapist, coach, friend and fan. The hardest part of stepping into this role is you don’t get a lot of practice before you actually have the experience of making a movie. Even as you’re dealing with everyone’s questions and insecurities, you’re having to navigate your own.  Preparation is the key to being confident on a set.

In our virtual classroom, you will explore and practice casting, rehearsal techniques, as well as script and scene analysis. Discover how to constructively communicate with your collaborators, overcome distractions, and break through the obstacles that keep you from being the most effective director and visual storyteller that you can be.

You will learn how to approach a script from a director’s perspective, how to conduct auditions and practice working with actors (via Zoom with actors connected from their own locations).  Other key crew members will visit the class and discuss their perspective on the dynamics of effective collaboration. Case studies and looking at scenes and dailies from the instructor’s past work will inspire discussion of how the choices a director makes in blocking and working with the cinematographer amplify a scene’s emotional impact.

The goal is to explore the directorial and collaborative processes and the techniques needed to create convincing performances while exploring the important role the director takes in the leadership of a production.

Having had a career as an actor prior to directing, your instructor will offer a uniquely informed perspective on how to guide actors to an effective performance.

Find out why students have called Valerie Landsburg’s classes transformative and life-changing.  A director, actor, writer, and coach, Valerie has been on film sets since she was seven. Everything Valerie learned and refined over the years, she received while working with well-known actors, writers and directors who answered her questions, shared their secrets generously and cheered her on. She is here to do the same for you. View the trailer for Valerie’s new Film “LOVE & DEBT” 

The instructor may recommend films to watch at your location that might incur streaming costs of $10-15.

In addition to being offered on an individual basis, this course is also part of the Spring Semester of the Certificate in Collaborative Filmmaking.


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Instructor: Valerie Landsburg

Valerie Landsburg is an actor, director, and writer.  Although she has a large body of work, with four decades in film, television, and on stage, she is best known for playing Doris Schwartz on the hit television series Fame.  Her latest film as a director, Love & Debt, was acquired for U.S. release and is currently available on Amazon, Spectrum, Cox, Xfinity, and YouTube Movies. The film features Tom Cavanagh, Bellamy Young, and Bailee Madison.  Her other directing credits include the action-thriller Bound by Lies starring Stephen Baldwin and Kristy Swanson, and Trixie’s Score. Other acting credits include Nip/Tuck, The Unit, Columbo, Empty Nest, Beverly Hills 90210, and Murder, She Wrote.  On Broadway she acted in Neil Simon’s I Ought to Be in Pictures, and appeared off-Broadway in Surviving Grace and Woody Allen’s The Floating Light Bulb.  A long time improviser, she has frequently performed at the Groundlings Theater.