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Film Columbus is dedicated to supporting our local crew and local filmmakers.

At Film Columbus, we are dedicated to supporting our local filmmaking community. That’s why we offer a range of workshops, often at low cost or for free, to provide valuable opportunities for both aspiring and experienced filmmakers and crew members. Join us throughout the year to enhance your skills, broaden your knowledge, and connect with fellow enthusiasts in the world of film and media. Explore our Workshops page to discover upcoming learning experiences tailored to your needs and interests.

Upcoming Workshops


Film Columbus Workshop 08: Carmen Cabana teaches Cinematography

PRESENTED BY CINEMA COLUMBUS FILM FESTIVAL! Internationally Acclaimed Cinematographer Carmen Cabana makes her first Ohio appearance! To register go here:

The Greater Columbus Film Commission (Film Columbus) and Cinema Columbus Film Festival are thrilled to announce a two-day Director of Photography (DP) workshop, taking place on Saturday, July 20, and Sunday, July 21. This exclusive event will be led by the acclaimed cinematographer Carmen Cabana.

Recognized by VARIETY as one of the most promising filmmakers, and featured in magazines like AMERICAN CINEMATOGRAPHER and ICG Magazine, Carmen’s years of experience and her ability to capture emotion and visual dynamism have made her a top choice among female cinematographers. She has filmed in 16 US states and internationally in Mexico, Cuba, South Africa, and Colombia. Carmen teaches cinematography workshops globally and has participated in numerous prestigious conferences and panels.

Workshop Details:

  • Dates: Saturday, July 20, and Sunday, July 21
  • Duration: 2 1/2 hours each day
  • Location: OHD Studios

Workshop Fees:

  • General Admission:
    – $75 for both workshops
    – $40 for one workshop
  • Student Admission:
    – $50 for both workshops
    – $30 for one workshop

Participants will have the unique opportunity to learn from Carmen Cabana as she shares her path to success, technical skills, and the elements contributing to being a successful DP. This workshop is an invaluable experience for both aspiring and seasoned cinematographers.

Don’t miss this chance to enhance your cinematography skills and learn from a master in the field. Register now to secure your spot in this not-to-be-missed event.

About Carmen Cabana: Carmen Cabana is a cinematographer of Afro-Hispanic descent raised in Colombia and Venezuela whose work has been recognized in magazines like VARIETY, AMERICAN CINEMATOGRAPHER and ICG Magazine. She has shot 52 episodes of TV including: “THE BIG CIGAR” (Apple+), Bad Robot’s pilot “DUSTER” (HBO), “MS. MARVEL” (Disney+) , “RESIDENT EVIL” (Netflix), “CITY ON FIRE” (Apple+), “NARCOS S2” (Netflix), “HIGH FIDELITY” (HULU), “PRETTY LITTLE LIARS ORIGINAL SIN S2” (HBO); “NATALIA” (HULU), “VIDA S1/S2” (STARZ/BIG BEACH), “LOS ANGELES” pilot (AMAZON).

Her film work includes 25 independent features including Blumhouse/Amazon’s: “NOCTURNE” starring Sydney Sweeney and Silk Media/Mucho MAS horror film “ROSARIO”.

Her commercial work includes brands like: Doritos, Elf, Square, Philips Norelco, Discover, Scott, Enmarket among others.

Carmen’s years of experience and ability for understanding story, capturing emotion and visual dynamism has catapulted her towards the top choices for cinematographers. Quickly to adapt and collaborate with locals, Carmen has filmed in 16 US states, Mexico, Malta, Cuba, South Africa and Colombia.

She is represented by UTA.

About Film Columbus: The Greater Columbus Film Commission (Film Columbus) is dedicated to fostering the growth of the film industry in Columbus, Ohio. By providing support and resources to filmmakers, Film Columbus aims to make Columbus a premier destination for film production.

Join us and Cinema Columbus for this exceptional learning opportunity and take your cinematography skills to the next level with Carmen Cabana at Film Columbus’s DP Workshop!


Scholarships available: If you would like to attend but find it difficult to cover the cost of the workshop, please contact us for information on scholarships.

PAST Workshops


Film Columbus Workshop 07: Film Columbus and Cinema Columbus Film Festival present: LEGAL SESSIONS

Don’t be daunted by the legal aspects of filmmaking. To get more info and register on Eventbrite go here:

Join us for an immersive legal workshop series tailored specifically for new and indie filmmakers, led by two experienced entertainment attorneys. Attend one or both workshops with one ticket! NO NEED TO BUY TICKETS FOR BOTH SESSIONS!

The workshops are designed to equip you with the foundational legal knowledge and tools needed to navigate the complex landscape of film production, distribution, and intellectual property. Whether you’re in the pre-production planning stage, seeking funding for your next project, or ready to distribute your finished film, understanding the legalities involved is crucial to protecting your work and ensuring your creative and financial success.

Workshop Highlights:

  • Interactive Sessions: Engage in interactive sessions where complex legal concepts are broken down into understandable and actionable information.
  • Expert Guidance: Learn directly from an entertainment attorney who brings years of industry-specific legal experience to the table. Benefit from real-world insights and advice tailored to the unique needs of indie filmmakers.
  • Networking Opportunities: Connect with fellow filmmakers and legal professionals, fostering relationships that can support your career growth and project development.
  • Practical Tools: Walk away with practical tools and resources, including checklists and templates that will aid you in contract negotiations, rights acquisitions, and more.
  • Q&A Sessions: Have your pressing legal questions answered in dedicated Q&A sessions, ensuring you gain clarity on the specific legal challenges you face.

This workshop will cover a range of vital topics providing you with a comprehensive understanding of the legalities affecting your work. Whether you’re crafting your debut film or looking to take your indie film project to the next level, this workshop will offer invaluable insights and knowledge to help you confidently achieve your filmmaking goals.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 17, 11am-4pm

Film Columbus Workshop 06: Strategies for Making a Good Film Truly Great with Writer/Director Jennifer Reeder

To get more info and register for FREE on Eventbrite go here:

Join us for an exciting event where we delve into the secrets of creating outstanding films! Whether you’re a budding filmmaker or simply passionate about movies, this in-person gathering is perfect for you. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to take your film-making to the next level with writer/director Jennifer Reeder!

In the spirit of continuing our commitment to accessibility, thanks to Film Columbus, Gateway Film Center, and the Greater Columbus Arts Council, tickets are FREE! Reserve your spot today and get ready to unleash your creativity.

Learn from award-winning writer/director Jennifer Reeder, who will share her valuable insights on enhancing your filmmaking skills. Discover the key elements that transform a good film into a great one, from storytelling techniques, casting ideas and directing actors, to making the most of pre-production.

During this interactive event, you’ll have the opportunity to network with fellow filmmakers, exchange ideas, and expand your own network. Our friendly atmosphere encourages open discussions and fosters a sense of community among film lovers.

Limited tickets are available! Reserve your spot today and get ready to unleash your creativity.

SATURDAY, November 4, 10am-5pm

Acting workshop with Isabella Blake-Thomas and Columbus-based SAG/AFTRA actor Otis Winston.

To get more info and register for FREE on Eventbrite go here:

This workshop will cover:

1. Scene Breakdowns: Discover the intricacies of dissecting and understanding a scene, allowing you to connect with your character on a profound level and deliver powerful performances.

2. Character Breakdowns: Explore the nuances of character development, honing your ability to bring your roles to life with authenticity and depth.

3. Working with a Partner: Learn the art of collaboration, as acting often involves sharing the stage or screen. Develop essential skills for building chemistry and rapport with fellow actors.

4. On Camera vs. Theater Technique: Understand the fundamental differences between acting for the camera and performing on stage. Adapt your skills to excel in both mediums, expanding your versatility as an actor.

5. Exploring Emotions: Dive into the emotional depths of your characters, exploring a range of emotions and expressions to create compelling and memorable portrayals.

6. Cold Reading vs. Memorizing/Preparing: Master the techniques required for cold reading auditions while also honing your ability to memorize and prepare scripts effectively.

September 29-October 1:

Crafting a Pitch That Hooks with Jenny Deller

Pitching your vision to funders and collaborators requires having an array of elements at the ready. In this hands-on weekend workshop, filmmaker and designer Jenny Deller will show you what you need in your toolkit and how to craft a powerful and professional pitch.

Learn the latest ideas helping writers, directors, and producers advance their projects, and get your pitch off to a great start this fall. The workshop is made up of three sessions, giving attendees a chance to work on their pitch between sessions. Each day will include a Q&A plus feedback or small group work. All levels are welcome. It is limited to 25 participants.

Session 1 – Friday, September 29, 4-6pm: The Pitch Deck – Jenny will walk you through 5 simple steps to help you pre-visualize and pitch your film, commercial, music video or series. See examples and learn basic concepts, tips and resources to design effective presentations.

Session 2 – Saturday, September 30, 2-5pm: The Logline & More – Even if you’re a visual thinker, a filmmaker’s written materials are indispensable tools of the trade. This session will help you sell your vision in decks, grant applications and emails.

Session 3 – Sunday, October 1, 2-5pm: The Live Pitch – Whether you’re competing in a pitch event or talking to someone at a party, there is an art to speaking about your project. This session will demystify how to communicate clearly and authentically and hopefully alleviate the jitters some of us get when presenting our projects.


Master the Craft: The Ultimate PA Workshop

Join Film Columbus, CenCam, Gateway Film Center, and Greater Columbus Arts Council on Saturday & Sunday, August 5-6, for an intensive two-day workshop on being a Production Assistant.

Kenny Chaplin will be your instructor for a deep dive into what to expect when you become a PA.

With the continued growth of the film industry in Columbus and Ohio, Film Columbus wants aspiring film crew to be prepared. Almost every crew member in film starts as a PA. It’s where you learn safety protocols and how a film set is run and managed.

The workshop will unravel the questions regarding tax credits, positions within the various departments, what can be expected on any given work day, how crewmembers communicate, working with or being a part of the background performers (extras), how a script is broken down and scheduled, production paperwork, safety responsibilities, the organized labor groups, accounting, and finally finding work, interviews and film-friendly resumes.

• Pre-production & production
• Tax credits and why are they shooting here?
• The Director’s team overview
• Your first day – expectations personally/professionally
• Set protocol & etiquette
• Walkie-talkie etiquette and procedures
• Department entry-level positions
• Script Breakdown and scheduling
• Background performer processing & choreography
• Set safety
• Guilds, unions, and accounting
• Resume building, interview skills, job search
• Production paperwork overview – prep schedule, call sheets, production reports, DOOD, and more.


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