Technology at center of new film school

At Chapman, Marion Knott Studios offers students digital projection screening room, three-camera HDTV stage and hefty digital cinema server.

A small university not too far from the glitz of Hollywood is challenging UCLA as a top film school, as it unveils its new state-of- the-art film facilities, reports the Los Angeles Times.

This fall, students at Chapman University will begin taking classes in the Marion Knott Studios, a new $41 million, 76,000-square-foot building. School officials say it is one of the nation's most advanced film school facilities.

The facility features two soundstages, a 500-seat stadium-style movie theater with a digital projector, a three-camera high-definition television stage and a motion-capture stage. Two floors of pre- and post-production facilities include a production design lab, a foley stage for creating sound effects, and a hefty digital cinema server.

"Equipment is just tools. There are large numbers of people going to school and looking to get into the industry. Some do and some don't. It's generally based on a lot of things — ability in the craft they choose, contacts, the ability to get along with people," said Ron Kutak, executive director of the Motion Pictures Editors Guild.

But those who have toured the facilities have nothing but praise.

"This is the most coherent, state-of-the-art facility anywhere in the country," said Dean Bob Bassett. "The students will have the tools they need when they go into the business."

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