Filmmaking Workshop For High School

Summer film project


Filmmaking Summer Workshop For High School

Teens (rising Grades 9-12) interested in any and all aspects of the movie industry will enjoy this two-week workshop. Film pre-production, production, and post-production will be covered, as well as various on and off set roles. Skills such as directing, videography, location sound, and editing with professional software will be taught. Students will collaborate in instructor-supervised groups to plan, shoot, and edit short fictional films. Final projects will be premiered on the last day!



Ages:  14-18 years
Dates:  July 22-August 2, 2019 (two weeks)
Times:  9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (M-F)
Tuition:  $855
Location:  Mason Fairfax Campus, Art & Design Building


Register Now

An “After Care” option is available for this program from 4-6 pm for $90/week, located in Mason’s Performing Arts Building and staffed by the Academy’s Summer Staff. After registering for this program (but before final checkout/ payment!), search for “After Care”, choose the corresponding week, and add to your cart – or Register Here separately.


Lisa Thrasher, Film Classes Instructor: Lisa Thrasher, Mason Film & Video Studies Professor
Read about Ms. Thrasher

Lisa Thrasher, J.D., is an Independent Film Producer, Entertainment Law Specialist and Film Professor at George Mason University. Lisa earned her Juris Doctorate degree from Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles, focusing on Intellectual Property & Entertainment Law and studied at Parsons School of Design and Virginia Commonwealth University, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography & Film.

At POWER UP Films, Lisa was President of Film Production & Distribution conducting all Film, TV & PSA development, production and distribution. At 20th Century Fox, Lisa did International Anti-Piracy Litigation & Trademark Prosecution and Anti-Piracy Advocacy seated on the Motion Picture Association’s International Anti-Piracy Committee with Sony, Universal, MGM, Disney, Paramount and Warner Bros where Lisa conducted negotiations with Foreign Heads of State, including Mexico’s President Vicente Fox, to protect the Studios’ Films. Also a Film Professor/Film Festival Panelist at: Chung Ang University in Seoul, Korea; The Goethe Institut in Johannesburg, South Africa and The South African Broadcasting Corp in Cape Town for Out in Africa; University at Buffalo; Ohio State University “Pop! Impact Forum;” Madrid’s Spanish Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences; South by Southwest “Gender and Sexuality in Film;” and a Short Film Screener for the Sundance Film Festival. Lisa also worked on documentaries for Producer Michael Paseornek, CEO/Founder of Lion’s Gate Films, and a Reality Television Producer on “Lunch Box Heros” (NBC) starring Leslie Nielson and “Open For Business” (PBS) starring Itzhak Perlman.


Matthew Vargas, Film Classes Teaching Assistant: Matthew Vargas
Read about Mr. Vargas

Matthew Vargas is a student videographer, editor, and producer enrolled as a senior in George Mason University’s Film and Video Studies program. He graduated and transferred from Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC) in 2017 with an Associates of Fine Arts degree to George Mason University in pursuit of knowledge related to the business, legal, and creative aspects of the film and television industry. Previously, Matthew has produced and directed his own narrative-fiction work which was screened at the 2016, 2017, and 2018 NVCC Student Film Festival. Matthew is currently producing a documentary series about the educational system of America with his partner and friend Rodrigo Vasquez. Matthew is also producing his own senior thesis film at George Mason University, which is a story in tribute to his grandmother. Matthew finds fulfillment in activist filmmaking, and plans to continue producing work that makes light of issues in our society, government, and world.


Jesse Benitez, Film and Video Summer Camps Teaching Assistant: Jesse Benitez
Read about Ms. Benitez

Jesaline “Jesse” Benitez is currently a sophomore at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. She is pursuing a degree in Film and Video Studies with a concentration in Producing and Directing. Since her early high school days, Jesse has continued to take part in the filmmaking process through her work in documentaries, fiction shorts, and freelance projects. Throughout her college career, she’s taken initiative in screenwriting, cinematography, and lighting. Along with storytelling, Jesse ventures into other creative endeavors ranging from writing, art, radio, and music production. She believes these creative outlets are imperative for expressing original thought that could help provide a change in perspective for the world.


Steger_headshot Director: Ben Steger, Mason Film & Video Studies Professor
Email questions to






To register by phone or request a paper registration form, please call the Academy office at 703-993-9889.



“You really helped me discover how much I love film more than I thought I would.” – Filmmaking Summer Workshop 2018 Participant

See More Testimonials

“My favorite part was the filming process and editing.” – Filmmaking Summer Workshop 2017 Participant

“Everyone learning theory and software was my favorite part.” – Filmmaking Summer Workshop 2017 Participant