Veteran cinematographers Janusz Kaminski, Phedon Papamichael, and Wally Pfister attended the greatest of all rogue film schools—the one run by Roger Corman—so it’s only natural that they’d create their own film school, apart from conventional grad-school programs. Or at least as a supplement, anyway. Created over two years, the Advanced Filmmaking site includes over 12 hours of lectures and interviews on video, and the launch includes talks from Wim Wenders, Alexander Payne, and former Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazzara, as well as discussions on network-building and managing personal lives. The “About Us” page emphasizes that the purpose of Advanced Filmmaking is not necessarily technical, but more a resource for advice on how to navigate the filmmaking world.
Though the site currently offers free samples and trailers for its longer contents, the bulk of the instructional videos are available via a la carte weeklong rentals on Vimeo, with prices roughly in the $3-$4 range. Between them, Kaminski, Papamichael, and Pfister have won three Oscars (two for Kaminski, for Schindler’s List and Saving Private Ryan; one for Pfister, for Inception), and each has worked consistently in features for over 20 years. Given the prohibitive cost of attending actual film school, three or four bucks for a hour’s worth of wisdom from these men seems like a steal. (They also link to various Instagram feeds, which are all extraordinarily striking.) Personally, I’m excited to know how Kaminski arranges for every available lighting package in Hollywood to backlight his scenes, but maybe that’s something for Advanced Advanced Filmmaking.