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Portfolio Requirements

Students who wish to apply for the BA in Film and Video Studies program must submit a portfolio.

Admission to Film and Video Studies (FAVS) is considered separately from admission to the university and only by portfolio review. Admission to the university is determined by the Admissions Office. Applicants must be admitted to George Mason University by the Admissions Office and admitted to FAVS by portfolio review to in order to pursue the BA in Film and Video Studies.

Spring 2015 and Fall 2015 applicants:

In order to be considered for admission to FAVS, students must apply to George Mason University and submit their portfolio to

Process for Submission:

Send your Portfolio Requirements by email to as a PDF file attachment or in the body of your email. PDF files should be saved as “your name_FAVSPortfolio.pdf” i.e. "SpikeLee_FAVSPortfolio.pdf"). Please put your name in the subject heading of your email: “Your Name, FAVS Portfolio” and in the body of your email. We will acknowledge receipt of portfolio submissions by email within two weeks of your message.

Deadlines (Spring 2015):

Freshman Applicants: October 18
Transfer Applicants: November 14

Deadlines (Fall 2015)

Freshman Applicants (Early Decision): November 10
Freshman Applicants (Regular Decision): February 2
Transfer Applicants: April 21

Portfolio Requirements:

Part 1 (REQUIRED): Write a 250-300 word essay on your interest in film and video.
Please address why an education in filmmaking and/or in the business of film is important to you. What potential career path in the industry interests you (cinematographer, producer, editor, screenwriter, critic, director, agent, manager, marketer, distributor.) You may choose more than one potential career path as you answer this question. 

Part 2 (REQUIRED): Choose ONE of the following three questions to answer:

2a: Write a 500-word treatment for an original fiction film.
Write a unique story by creating distinctive characters who are faced with a compelling conflict. Introduce the problem and describe how they might overcome it. Give away the ending to your story and tell us how your character gets there. If your have been inspired by another film, a book, play, or piece of music, be sure to mention it.


2b: Write a 500-word proposal for a potential documentary film (i.e. a story involving participants and that represents real life)
What is the challenge your participants face and how do they work to overcome that conflict?  What makes them unique and what are they doing that you would film? Describe the person or group as you might a fictional character. Where do you see the film ending up? If a documentary film inspires you and you want your film to look like that work, be sure to mention it!


2c: Write a 500-word analysis of the business aspects of film, or the film and video industry.
The topic you discuss should include, but not be limited to, development, marketing, management, financing, and distribution of the film or the film and video industry. If you want to discuss a film, questions to consider are why that film is unique, successful, or failed in terms of marketing, distribution, financing, development, etc. If you want to discuss the industry as a whole, you can analyze intriguing recent trends of the film and video industry.

Part 3 (OPTIONAL):
Submit a video, demo reel, or evidence of business related work in film and video as a web link.
This should be a 5 minute clip of something you made or that you collaborated in making, or a link to a crowd funding campaign you managed. Clearly indicate your role. If you are submitting a creative piece and it runs longer than 5 minutes, we will watch the first 5 minutes only. This sample should demonstrate your skills and interests in storytelling (for fiction or nonfiction), and/or production technique, and/or interests in film business. Provide a password in your email if the link is password protected.

Film and Video Studies Program | College of Visual and Performing Arts | George Mason University
4400 University Drive, MS 3E6 | Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: 703-993-FAVS (3287) | Fax: 703-993-3175 |