From Judy Garland to the Coen Brothers, Minnesota has produced outstanding talent for Hollywood. Want to be the next great filmmaker? Minnesota has schools for you. Without committing to a hefty four-year degree, you can get the insider scoop on filmmaking from top professionals and educators. These classes will tell you everything you need to know about making that blockbuster you’ve always dreamed of and help you get started in the competitive world of cinema. Don’t let those ideas go to waste. Who knows? It might your movie up for the Best Picture Oscar someday.

Independent Filmmaker Project
2446 University Ave. W., Suite 100
Saint Paul, MN 55114
(651) 644-1912

Supporting independent filmmakers from all over, the IFP in Minneapolis knows that there are some movies that simply need to be seen. No jumping through hoops for corporate studio executives, these are pure films made by the pure film lovers who come out of this program. There are classes for screenwriting and photography as well as shooting for film and digital video. There are even summer camps so that the youth can get involved. It’s never too early to start loving film.

Related: Best Places For Film Geeks And Film Buffs In Minnesota

(credit: Jupiter Images)

(credit: Jupiter Images)

Minneapolis-St. Paul Film School by Film Connection
(310) 456-9623

Minnesota’s chapter of the Film Connection allows local movie makers to really cut their teeth, really get hands-on and put their vision onscreen, without having to move to California (even though that is where the headquarters are located). Learn how to direct, produce, edit and write with the best so you’ll be able to truly bring your vision to life. Minnesota has a long list of movies filmed here, from “Fargo” to “The Mighty Ducks” to “Factotum.” Yours could, and should, be next.

Screenwriters’ Workshop
528 Hennepin Ave., Suite 507
Minneapolis, MN 55403
(612) 492-1742

Everybody knows that the screenplay is an important component of a good film. The characters, the dialogue and the story all come from the screenplay, and a movie without a good one is usually lost, even with plenty of fancy visuals. The Screenwriters Workshop will help young writers shape their work; put the words onto paper that will one day shape the images on the silver screen. You’ll be able to work closely with other writers, sharing thoughts and ideas, and there are plenty of opportunities for smaller table readings and larger stage readings to really see what the audience thinks of your story.

Related: Best Twin Cities Movie Theater

(credit: Jupiter Images)

(credit: Jupiter Images)

Minnesota Filmmakers Meetup

You’re not the only one who thinks that Citizen Kane is overrated, that cinematography is the most important aspect of a film or that montage is an effective tool. At this meetup of film geeks and movie buffs, you’ll be able to discuss all of this and more. From shooting the film, editing, scoring and finally, putting it up on screen, you’ll get to talk about each and every part of making a great movie. Better than sitting on IMDB message boards all day long, get out there and meet filmmakers just like you. The meetups often change, so follow the message board and website to find one close to you.

Adrian Schramm is a resident Saint Paul writer with a passion for all things local. Through his work with Saint Paul Almanac and Minneapolis Examiner at, as well as in the kitchens of bars and restaurants around town, he has discovered what truly makes the Twin Cities tick.