Rome International Film School
Accepting applications for the 2018/19 one year program Study and make films in the Eternal City!
Rome International Film School
Hands-on professional training in the art, craft and business of filmmaking
Rome International Film School
Training in screenwriting, directing, cinematography, editing, animation, sound design, art direction and film, web and TV production.

Welcome to RIFS


The Rome International Film School – RIFS – offers students from around the world the opportunity to learn the art, craft and business of film, television and new media, through a finely structured mix of courses teaching classic professional standards and the ever changing innovations, with a major focus on project creation and completion, giving students a three dimensional, complete, practical education in the field.

Rome has a long, storied history in cinema, and is known worldwide for its beauty, culture and charms.

RIFS is the answer for many who seek high level, modern, practical film education in one of the finest international contexts.

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RIFS programs

RIFS was launched after much development in December 2016 with a series of masterclasses and short courses in professional screenwriting, acting for film and directing.

In spring ’17 term we united a select group of students with local professionals to produce a promotional half hour pilot film for the TV series “Gray Areas”, “Belleview Hotel”. The film ran for four weeks at the prestigious, historic Cinema Farnese in the center of Rome.

Beginning September 18, 2017 RIFS starts its world class, hands-on practical one-year filmmaking program, where students are trained in all aspects of filmmaking and make a number of films and work on many others of fellow students, while also gaining professional experience and opportunities for internships in the field of international cinema, all in the context of one of the most beautiful, historic and vibrant cities in Europe!



The 2017/18 one year program is underway!

During the Fall semester students take core courses in directing, screenwriting, editing, production and cinematography, while also selecting from a number of electives offered, including animation, acting, documentary film, film studies and other courses. During this first term, students will also work in small groups and produce two film exercises and two original short films.

During the Spring semester students can specialize in a track of their choice, taking advanced classes in one or more specializations, while also participating in professional workshops where production is going on each week. Additionally they have the opportunity to make two more original films of their own while working on their fellow students’ projects.

By the end of the year, besides gaining enormous practical training in classes, the hands-on approach will allow students to have worked on some 30 films during their time at RIFS.


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Pilot episode for the series “ GRAY AREAS”

The 2017 spring term at RIFS offered a unique program as students and professionals teamed up and decided to make “BELLEVIEW HOTEL”, the pilot episode of “GRAY AREAS”, a TV anthology series of macabre and entertaining tales, with RIFS producing under the supervision of its director Carl Haber. The film screened each night for 4 weeks at the Cinema Farnese in Rome in summer 2017.

Sliding 3_©AndreaAnnessiMecci_AAM_3450

Based on the original published short story and collection by Carmen Burcea-Haber, Belleview Hotel tells the story of a very unusual hotel in an odd little town in Italy, and how obsessions with illness and love offer a visitor a very unexpected stay.



Luke Mullinger

Beatrice Fedi

Alessandro Haber

Venantino Venantini

Gabriele Falsetta

Andrea Colicchia

Elvira Giannini

Edoardo Camponeschi


Supervising Producer: Carl Haber

Director: Whitney Stephenson

Original Story by: Carmen Burcea-Haber

Screenplay by: Carl Haber, Carmen Burcea-Haber and Sharde Griffith

Line Producers: Sharde Griffith & Chiara Paci

Director of Photography: Savannah Bourne

Production Design: Nina Di Salvo

Costume Design: Carmen Burcea-Haber

Editor: Lorenzo D’Agostini

Sound Recording & Design: Jimmy Lauri

Administration: Stefano Misiani

Associate Producer: Giuseppe Milano

Composer: Lou Forestieri


Future Programs

Even as we grow RIFS will always remain a fairly small, prestigious film school with the mission to provide hands-on and personalised training to future professionals.

While continuing with master classes, special events and the one year program RIFS will also be adding a one-month summer program, professional training courses, and an exciting second-year program. 

THE ONE MONTH PROGRAM will run in June each year and offer students from around the world and within Italy the opportunity to study with us and get fast-track training in the core disciplines and MAKE FILMS.

THE PROFESSIONAL TRAINING COURSES will continue to be offered periodically for people local to Rome and the area, looking for technical training and education in the crafts of filmmaking: directing, cinematography, screenwriting, lighting, production, etc.

THE SECOND YEAR PROGRAM is entirely unique to RIFS. No other European film program has this opportunity, where students will be selected to participate in the writing, development, production and post-production/completion of a FEATURE FILM. RIFS will produce with the students a film based on a screenplay that will be selected from an annual competition open to all prospective students, subsequently furnishing the equipment, production support and faculty guidance to the students who will all function in key roles on the film: directing, producing, cinematography, production design, editing, etc. We will bring on board supporting crew and cast, help provide locations, props, wardrobe, makeup and other production support, as well as all needed support for post-production. The film will be marketed by RIFS and submitted for international film festival exposure and all efforts will be made to see the film distributed both in Italy and internationally. In this way, each year  from 2018 onward, RIFS Will be producing a feature film together with its students, and become a hub of energy and production in the heart of Rome.


RIFS will be structured in four main sections:

The International Film School
 – a one-year and two-year diploma program for international students in the art, craft and business of filmmaking. RIFS aims to offer MA/MFA degrees in filmmaking and screenwriting in the years ahead.

On-line Academy — Starting in 2019, RIFS will offer Interactive Internet courses and seminars, offered globally via podcast and other platforms, in film disciplines that do not require physical presence at our Rome facility.

Professional Training Workshops — Professionals, amateurs and film lovers can take advantage of short courses, often on evenings and weekends, in introductory and advanced classes across a number of disciplines: cinematography, directing, editing, animation and acting. Beginning in June 2017 RIFS is also offering one-month summer workshops for local and international students.

The Forum: Special Events & Master Classes 
– Master classes, symposia, special screenings and seminars organized by RIFS, featuring notable guests from the international world of cinema and TV.

RIFS will be producing many dozens of quality short films each year, as well as one feature film per year starting in 2018. We will help promote and distribute these films so that they appear in festivals worldwide as well as find potential distribution outlets in both new media and on pay TV.

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A Unique Opportunity

RIFS is unique in Europe, merging American film education techniques with European cultural and international sensibilities. We aim to see RIFS named among the top, prestigious international film schools, attracting the most talented film students to Rome, and contribute to the revitalization of the Italian film panorama.

RIFS’ focus is on stimulating creativity and teaching true technical proficiency to students, through well-designed, proven courses in the fundamentals of filmmaking – directing, screenwriting, acting, cinematography, sound, production design, post-production, animation, visual effects and more – as well as intensive prioritizing on the making of films. We will turn out professionals, ready to step into the world of filmmaking internationally, each with his or her artistic and professional vision.

The RIFS faculty features award winning directors, screenwriters, producers and film technicians, recognized domestically in their countries, and internationally. RIFS will also boast a steady stream of international guests: writers, directors, actors, producers, art directors, editors, distributors, and other professionals from all corners of the globe, ready to share their experiences with master classes, seminars, screenings, Q&A’s and the like. The school has nurtured relationships with active film production and distribution companies, ready to offer internships and practical professional experience to our students as well. RIFS has a growing Honorary Advisory Board composed of select and important figures in the world of international film, on hand to offer advice, help monitor the school’s evolution and continue to assure the highest level of teaching and film production.

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The School

Piazza della Rotonda, Pantheon, Rome

RIFS has been founded by Carl Haber, an American director, screenwriter, and producer, university professor of film and former Faculty Director at the Prague Film School.

The mission of the school is to provide talented students the opportunity to learn the skills in a creative and practical environment from experienced professionals in the field, so as to be prepared to advance their careers.

With the technologies, platforms, markets, audiences and commercial realities evolving constantly, the RIFS program and approach is built to be responsive to that evolution, to equip and prepare students for the latest developments, as well as to furnish the timeless knowledge that has underpinned the field since its inception.  Students work with the latest technologies and techniques, but they are also trained to ensure the quality and value of the content of their work. We strive to see students produce not only projects that are technically impressive, but also those that can move people and make people think. RIFS offers a multi-disciplinary, fast-track program, for students from around the world, with a focus on professionalism, creativity, storytelling and innovation.

Students will learn the art, craft and business of filmmaking:

  • Film & media history and the latest developments
  • Writing skills and professional standards
  • Practical filmmaking skills – in all major disciplines
  • Modern technological skills and outlets (digital production, web series production, etc.)
  • Professional production skills and protocols
  • Ideation, development, pitching, preparing, production, editing and completion of creative projects
  • A high, professional degree of skill in their particular specialization

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