Grady and Franklin Colleges, Athena Studios, and Trilith Studios
Grady College at UGA
Students spend their first year living in Athens, GA, completing core curriculum on the University of Georgia’s campus, home of the National Champion Bulldogs and the Peabody Awards. Home to UGA’s over 40,000 students, Athens is a lively college town with historic architecture and natural beauty, providing our students with a plethora of dynamic and cinematic filming locations.
Franklin College at UGA
The Department of Theatre and Film Studies in Franklin College is a crucial partner in the success of the MFA Film Program. In addition to the classes taken in Grady College during their first year in Athens, GA, students will also learn from industry veterans and awarded faculty members in the areas of acting for the camera, set design, and costume design. Through this educational joint venture, students head into their second year with a well-rounded education of what happens on camera, behind the camera, and all that happens long before a camera gets involved.
Athena Studios in Athens, GA
In addition to the facilities and equipment located at Grady College, our program will teach its first-year production courses at our dedicated 14,000 square foot production hub at Athena Studios, located just a short 8-minute drive from campus.
With the next phase of construction underway, Athena Studios has plans to be a sprawling and fully functional 350,000 square foot complex prepared to house the next wave of Georgia-filmed entertainment content.
Trilith Studios in Fayetteville, GA
Our students’ home for the second year of the program is the Town at Trilith, located adjacent to Trilith Studios, which is soon to become the largest studio complex in North America and currently boasts over 32 soundstages with plans to expand to 40 and a footprint of 2.7 million square feet of production space.
Situated near the atmospheric ROAM coffee house, our space in the 210 building at Trilith features a classroom, an equipment cage, and a conference area overlooking the Town. Just across the street, our students take some of their courses at the GFA building and Studio A. Approximately a half hour from central Atlanta, our second year students are surrounded by a filming environment with proximity to both quiet suburban and busy urban life.
2022 Georgia film industry at a glance
This is the only MFA program for film production at a public university in Georgia and will be offered to students at a comparable tuition rate to other graduate programs at UGA, making it one of the most affordable programs of its caliber in the country.
The production industry in Georgia has never been stronger and continues to expand. The state of Georgia currently ranks among the top three film and television production centers in the nation. For the 2022 fiscal year, Georgia was home to 412 projects with a combined in-state expenditure of $4.4 billion, according to the Georgia Department of Economic Development.
“This fiscal year…movies filmed in Georgia claimed four of the top six spots for highest domestic-grossing movies: ‘Avengers: Endgame’ (No. 2), ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’ (3), ‘Black Panther’ (5), and ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ (6), reported the GDEcD, as well as the widely celebrated television series ‘Watchmen’, ‘Stranger Things’, ‘Ozark’, and ‘WandaVision’.
Frequently Asked Questions
Annual tuition is $16,000 (approximate in state): $41,000 (approximate out of state). Accepted students will also be required to have a laptop and some specialized software. Estimated costs range between $2,000-3,000.
What is the difference between the MFA in Film, Television and Digital Media program and the low residency MFA Program in Narrative Media?
The MFA in Film, Television and Digital Media program is an intensive six semester, two-year residential program in which students will be trained in the above-the-line roles of screenwriting, directing and producing. They will also have coursework in camera and lighting, editing and production design. Students in this program will produce a number of short films, as well as a capstone thesis film or television pilot. If you want to learn a comprehensive set of filmmaking skills and can reside in Athens, Georgia, in year one and near Trilith Studios south of Atlanta, Georgia, in year two, this program may be for you.
The MFA Program in Narrative Media is a 2 ½-year, five semester low-residency program that offers two tracks: Screenwriting and Narrative Nonfiction Writing. Students attend two week-long residencies each year on the Athens campus, one in August and one in January, and then complete the remainder of their work online under the supervision of a faculty writing professor. Screenwriting students in this program will develop at least two full-length screenplays or television pilots. If you are specifically interested in screenwriting, or are unable to relocate for two years, this program may be for you. Please see our MFA in Narrative Media website for more details.
Housing is not covered by tuition and fees. Students are responsible for securing their own housing.
- Year 1 in Athens: There are many options for housing in the Athens area, both on and off campus. This link is a good source for more information about Athens housing: https://isl.uga.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/8/2020/09/Off-Campus_Living_Guide_2020-min.pdfhttps://sga.uga.edu/uploads/docs/SGA_Student_Housing_Guide.pdf
- Year 2 near Trilith Studios: There are a number of options for housing in year two. Premiere Lofts offers premium apartments in Trilith Village. https://premierelofts.com/
Want to Get Started?
This is the first MFA program for film production at a public university in Georgia and is offered to students at a tuition rate comparable to other graduate programs at UGA, making it one of the most affordable programs of its caliber in the country.
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Header image provided by Chris Gerlach