USC School of Cinematic Arts
|Motto||Limes regiones rerum|
Motto in English
|Reality ends here|
|Type||Private film school|
|Dean||Elizabeth M. Daley Ph.D.
|88 full time
200 part time
|135 full time
300 student workers
|Location||Los Angeles, California, United States|
The USC School of Cinematic Arts (formerly the USC School of Cinema-Television, or CNTV) is a private film school within the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, in the U.S. state of California. It is the oldest and largest such school in the country, established in 1929 as a joint venture with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and is widely recognized as one of the most prestigious film programs in the world. 
The school offers multiple undergraduate and graduate programs covering production, screenwriting, critical studies, animation and digital arts, and interactive media & games. Additional advanced programs include the Media Arts and Practice PhD Program, the Peter Stark Producing Program, and the Business of Entertainment (offered in conjunction with the USC Marshall School of Business MBA Program). The acceptance rate to the School of Cinematic Arts has consistently remained between 4-5% for the past several years, giving the school a lower acceptance rate than Harvard University, Stanford University and Yale University.
The school's founding faculty include Douglas Fairbanks, D. W. Griffith, William C. DeMille, Ernst Lubitsch, Irving Thalberg, and Darryl Zanuck. Notable professors include Drew Casper, the Alma and Alfred Hitchcock Professor of American Film; Tomlinson Holman, inventor of THX; film critic and historian Leonard Maltin; and David Bondelevitch, President of the Motion Picture Sound Editors.
In April 2006, the USC Board of Trustees voted to change the school's name to the USC School of Cinematic Arts.
On September 19, 2006, USC announced that alumnus George Lucas had donated US$175 million to expand the film school with a new 137,000-square-foot (12,700 m2) facility. This represented the largest single donation to USC and the largest to any film school in the world. His previous donations resulted in the naming of two existing buildings after him and his then-wife, though Lucas was not fond of the architecture used in those buildings. An architectural hobbyist, Lucas laid out the original designs for the project, inspired by the Mediterranean Revival Style that was used in older campus buildings as well as the Los Angeles area. The project also received another $50 million in contributions from Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox and The Walt Disney Company.
In the fall of 2006, the USC School of Cinematic Arts joined forces with the Royal Film Commission of Jordan to create the Red Sea Institute of Cinematic Arts (RSICA) in Aqaba, Jordan. The first classes were held in 2008, and the first graduating class for the university was in 2010.
Donations from film and game industry companies, friends, and alumni have enabled the school to build the following facilities:
- the School of Cinematic Arts Complex, completed in 2010, which includes:
- the 20th Century Fox Soundstage
- the George Lucas and Steven Spielberg Buildings, featuring the Ray Stark Family Theatre, which is equipped for 3D presentation, as well as two digital theatres, the Albert and Dana Broccoli Theatre and Fanny Brice Theatre
- the Marcia Lucas Post-Production Center
- the Marilyn & Jeffrey Katzenberg Center for Animation
- the Sumner Redstone Production Building
- the Interactive building (SCI), home of the Game Innovation Lab, the USC Interactive Media & Games Division and the Media Arts and Practice
- the Robert Zemeckis Center for Digital Arts, home of Trojan Vision, USC's student television station
- the Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre Complex, featuring a 365-seat theatre that also serves as a classroom with USC faculty member and Academy Award winner Tomlinson Holman's THX audiovisual reproduction standard used in film venues worldwide. The Frank Sinatra Hall, dedicated in 2002, houses a public exhibit and collection of extensive memorabilia commemorating Sinatra's life and contributions to American popular culture.
- the David L. Wolper Center at Doheny Memorial Library
- the Louis B. Mayer Film and Television Study Center at Doheny Memorial Library
- the Hugh M. Hefner Moving Image Archive
- Since 1973, at least one alumnus of SCA has been nominated for an Academy Award annually, totaling 256 nominations and 78 wins.
- Since 1973, at least one SCA alumnus or alumna has been nominated for the Emmy Award annually, totalling 473 nominations and 119 wins.
- The top 17 grossing films of all time have had an SCA graduate in a key creative position.
- The Princeton Review has ranked the Interactive Media and Games Division's video game design program best in North America multiple years in a row.
- Both The Hollywood Reporter and USA Today have ranked SCA the number one film program in the world, with its unmatched facilities, proximity to Hollywood, and numerous industry connections being the primary rationale.
- Awards for USC Cinema short films
- In 1955, producer Wilber T. Blume, a USC Cinema instructor at the time, received an Academy Award for best live action short film for a film he created entitled The Face of Lincoln. Blume also received an Academy Award nomination that year for documentary short.
- In 1968, George Lucas won first prize in the category of Dramatic films at the third National Student Film Festival held at Lincoln Center, New York for his futuristic Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB.
- In 1970, producer John Longenecker received an Academy Award for best live action short film for a film he produced while attending USC Cinema 480 classes as an undergraduate—The Resurrection of Broncho Billy. The film's crew and cast included Nick Castle, cinematographer; John Carpenter, film editor and original music; James Rokos, director; Johnny Crawford, lead actor; and Kristin Nelson, lead actress.
- In 1973, Robert Zemeckis won a Special Jury Award at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences' second annual Student Film Awards presentation for A Field of Honor.
- In 2001, MFA student David Greenspan won the Palme d’Or for short film at the Cannes Film Festival for his student film Bean Cake.
- In 2006, director, co-writer, and producer Ari Sandel received an Academy Award for best live action short film ("West Bank Story") made as a USC Cinema graduate school project.
- In 2009, MFA student Gregg Helvey was nominated for an Academy Award for his MFA thesis film, Kavi.
Notable SCA alumni
Notable faculty members and instructors
- Michael Cieply, A Film School’s New Look Is Historic, The New York Times, February 9, 2009, Accessed February 10, 2009.
- The New York Times reports the motto as meaning "Reality ends here", but a more direct translation of the Latin approximates as, "The border is the regions of things".
- USC School of Cinematic Arts, Accessed October 23, 2014.
- Sharon Waxman, At U.S.C., a Practical Emphasis in Film, The New York Times, January 31, 2006, Accessed February 10, 2009.
- Rachel Abramowitz, L.A.'s screening gems, Los Angeles Times, Accessed June 16, 2008.
- Abramowitz, Rachel (2010). "LA's Screen Gems". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2015-02-08.
- Stuart Silverstein, George Lucas Donates USC's Largest Single Gift, The Los Angeles Times, September 19, 2006
- John Zollinger, George Lucas Donates $175 Million to USC, USC Public Relations, September 20, 2006
- Jordan Signs Cinema Pact With USC, USC Public Relations, September 20, 2006
- Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre Complex, USC School of Cinematic Arts Facilities, Accessed January 3, 2009.
- USC Self-Guided Tour, University of Southern California, Accessed June 8, 2009.
- Mel Cowan, Cinematic Arts Celebrates 80th Anniversary With All New Campus, University of Southern California, March 31, 2009, Accessed May 1, 2009.
- The Student Movie Makers, TIME Magazine, February 2, 1968
- Rinzler, J.W., The Complete Making of Indiana Jones; The Definitive Story Behind All Four Films, Del Rey, 2008, ISBN 978-0345501295.
- Bapis, Elaine M. , Camera And Action: American Film As Agent of Social Change, 1965–1975, McFarland, 2008, ISBN 978-0-7864-3341-4.
- Alumni Profile: Cannes Do Spirit, Trojan Family Magazine, Spring 2002, Accessed September 19, 2006.
- KAVI – a short film written and directed by Gregg Helvey » Cast/Crew. Kavithemovie.com. Retrieved on 2014-06-05.
- Weinraub, Bernard. "FILM; An Unusual Choice for the Role of Studio Superhero", The New York Times, July 9, 2000. Accessed November 27, 2007. "Mr. Singer attended the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan for two years, and then transferred to the University of Southern California."
- "Passings: Dick Hoerner, L.A. Rams fullback, dies at 88; John A. Ferraro, actor, director and USC teacher, dies at 64". Los Angeles Times. December 19, 2010. Retrieved December 24, 2010.
- Kaufman, Amy (October 9, 2012). "James Franco to teach a USC film production class next spring". Los Angeles Times.
- "Respected Cinematographer, Professor and USC Alumnus obituary". USC School of Cinematic Arts. December 2, 2010. Retrieved December 12, 2010.