You can’t walk five blocks in Baltimore anymore without running into a film crew, from Veep to House of Cards to whatever movie is trying to approximate DC this week. The Maryland Film Fest gets more awesome every year. Matt Porterfield is famous. It’s undeniable that Baltimore’s film culture is on the rise.
For years, though, one major stumbling block has been the city’s universities’ lack of serious filmmaking programs. Although it’s had a film and media studies department since 1995, Johns Hopkins didn’t offer a strong emphasis on film production in its film and media studies major until recently; MICA never put filmmaking on the same level as sculpture, painting, or digital art. But that’s all about to change in a major way.
In a plan that’s been a long time coming, Hopkins and MICA are joining forces to launch a film center for joint studies of the form. The new center will be located in Station North near the future Parkway Theatre, and will have a relationship with the Maryland Film Festival–so in other words, the schools are doing whatever they can to leverage the city’s already-existing strengths as they take this project forward.
Starting Fall 2015, you’ll be able to get an MFA in filmmaking from MICA. “MICA is committed to helping define Baltimore as an international center for filmmaking,” MICA president Samuel Hoi said in a release. “We aren’t thinking small. Our aim is to create a nexus that enables all of the region’s film, cinema and animation resources to achieve synergy and grow dramatically.”
Get ready to see a lot more film crews, Baltimore.
Updated: The original story indicated that Hopkins did not have a film major until last year. We edited the story to reflect that Hopkins has had a film and media studies department since 1995, but the emphasis on film making has only happened in recent years.
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