Top Film Universities in the United States for Masters in 2023

top film universities
Masters Degree

Top Film Universities in the United States for Masters in 2023

Film is becoming a growingly popular major as more and more students become invested in the field, with the increasing popularity of online film streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+. The United States is one of the top study destinations for master’s degrees worldwide and is a country that is very invested in the film industry. It makes a lot of sense, considering it’s the birthplace of Hollywood, one of the biggest media and film hubs in the world. Here are some of the top film universities in the United States for a master’s to study at in 2023 if you are interested in pursuing a master’s in the film industry. 

University of Southern California 

Location: California 

The University of Southern California is the top of the list of the top Film universities if you want to study in America and pursue a master’s degree. Many great alumni of the school include filmmakers Douglas Fairbanks, Darryl Zanuck and Irving Thalberg, who actually teach classes there to students today, among other world-class faculty members. Ride Along director Tim Story was also an alumnus of this great film school. The school is known for its excellent film master’s programs, with classes taught by celebrity guests like Lisa Kudrow, its state-of-the-art top technology VR Lab and its exclusive master’s program for video game designers. Many alumni of the school who are working in the film industry today say that they are constantly referring back to what they learned during their master’s or bachelor’s programs there during the course of their careers so it’s well worth looking into this excellent school. 

Read more: 7 Remarkable Film Universities in the US in 2023


Location: New York 

Another major player when it comes to top Film Universities in the United States is the New York University in New York. Many star-studded alumni graduated from the school like Cathy Yan, a director who directed the 2018 movie Sundance and then Marvel’s Harley Quinn movie, and The Handmaid’s Tale director Reed Morano who became the first female director to win a drama Emmy in over 20 years. The school has many great master’s degree programs in all genres of film that you could be interested in so if you want to live in New York, New York this one could be a great choice for you. 

Art Center College of Design

Location: California

Art Center College of Design is another of the top Film Universities if you want to study in the US. Located in Pasadena, California, the Art Center College of Design offers students a state-of-art education through top notch equipment and facilities only a moment away from the film and television world in Los Angeles. Students who choose to study a master’s degree in Film use the latest production tools and learn how to shoot and do everything in production and post-production. They learn how to capture professional-grade motion images with the tools and technologies in the school. Specific course tracks students can choose to pursue include those in cinematography, editing and directing.  When students graduate from the master’s program, they will have written and directed a film and developed a unique reel of individual work. Notable graduates of the school include directors Zack Snyder (who directed “Army of the Dead”) and Michael Bay (who directed“Ambulance”), as well as veteran cinematographer Don Burgess (of movie “Spider-Man”).

Read more: Top Universities for Fashion and Film

Belmont University

Location: Tennessee

Belmont University is another one of the top Film Universities to pursue a film master’s degree in the US. This Nashville-based university has several great master’s programs including a motion pictures program that is out of this world. The motion pictures program has a 250 seat theater and a sound mixing stage where students can learn to mix in Dolby Atmos sounds on a feature film-sized mixing stage. They also offer the latest cameras like the Arri Alexa LF to filmmaker majors who can use the super lighting and equipment to produce top-class work. The programs offered there teach good work ethic, while providing a hands-on experience so students can develop the needed skills to become great in the film field.  

Biola Film School

Location: California


Biola Film School is also one of the top Film Universities in the US with a great master’s program for budding film students. Students who join the degree program learn to focus on collaborating rather than competing and gain the necessary technical and creative skills to work in the world of film. The school has 3 million dollars worth of state-of-the-art equipment on it’s production centre. The school of cinema and media arts aims to teach students with a four-screen media approach using the cinema screen, tv screen, computer screen and mobile phone screen so that students can convey a message using all 4 screen types. Students also get to participate in many independent productions to learn hands-on skills and be ready for the world after graduation. 

Boston University

Location: Massachusetts

Boston University is one of the top Film Universities in the US with the department of film located in the perfect environment next to on-location productions. The school has several different programs with diverse areas of focus from production, screenwriting, film and television studies, to management and producing. Famous alumni include “Uncut Gems” filmmakers the Safdie brothers and Oscar- winning producer David Dinerstein (who produced “Summer of Soul”). The school encourages students to pursue master’s degrees in the field as they believe mastering film skills is critical in a world where anyone can make a movie on their phone. 

California Institute of the Arts

Location: California 

If you want to study a film master’s degree, one of the top Film Universities is the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California. The school of film and video offers a master’s track that focuses on all modes of moving image and sound based artwork, such as story and character driven narratives in both live-action and in animated form. They also offer students the chance to work on documentaries as well as experimental cinema (which focuses on the personal connection between the film maker and the subject matter of his or her choice).  The school also offers summer courses, as well as courses in topics like character animation and film directing. In addition,the university also has a center for integrated media that is designed specifically for Master’s students who want to focus on the creative use of technology, especially digital media in a deeper fashion than in the regular master’s degree program.  

top film universities

California State University Northridge

Location: California 


Located in the heart of the entertainment industry in California, this one of the top Film Universities is the California State University Northridge. The school offers six programs of study at the cinema and television arts department. It has industry-standard equipment and facilities, including film and television stages, post-production suites, a visual effects and animation lab, new media lab and a 130-seat screening room dedicated to Elaine and Alan Armer. Students of the school come from different backgrounds and are taught by award-winning Hollywood faculty that aim to inspire students and encourage their artistic voices, as well as highlight what is unique about each student in their films. 

Read more: Where to pursue a Film master’s degree in Germany in 2023

Colorado Film School

Location: Colorado 

This film school of the top Film Universities is located in Denver, Colorado and has an excellent film and media studies program. The program aims to teach students theoretical information mixed with creative practice, preparing them to use media technology and at the same time deeply understand moving images in film. The school offers a world-class education at a community college price so it’s a great option if you have a low budget. The school offers top-class facilities, tools and professors to offer students a great education that doesn’t break the bank.

There are many great options for top Film Universities if you want to study in the US. You can choose the state of your dreams and then search for the specialisation program you’ve been dreaming of. In general, most top Film Universities are in California, as that’s where Hollywood is located so this state will take up a major space on your list when looking for a school. If you’re not sure if you want to pursue a master’s degree in Film or if you want to study in the US, reach out to the experts at UniApp to give you some help.

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