Beijing Film Academy (Chinese: 北京电影学院; pinyin: Běijīng Diànyǐng Xuéyuàn; abbreviated BFA) is a coeducational state-run higher education institution in Beijing, China. The film school is the largest institution specializing in the tertiary education for film and television production in Asia.
The academy has earned international recognition for its achievements in film production. Established in May 1950, the Beijing Film Academy was first named Performance Art Institution of the Film Bureau of the Ministry of Culture.
During its first year, 38 students were enrolled. For the next five years, the school was renamed three times - Film School of the Film Bureau of the Ministry of Culture in July 1951, Beijing Film School in March 1953 and finally, Beijing Film Academy on June 1, 1956. Upon its first establishment, the academy was comprised of 2 schools - the School of Photography and the Animation School along with the associated departments and their subsequent specialties.
The Screenwriting Department was one of the earliest departments to be established at the academy in 1951. Gradually, the academy expanded its number of schools and departments. On September 14, 1950, BFA offered its first undergraduate course in performing arts. The course attracted a class of 30 students, many of which were notable figures in film and television. Due to its success, BFA established the Performance Institute in June 1956.
In 1952, BFA offered its first programs in sound recording. The Department of Sound Recording was officially founded in 1959. The Department of Sound Recording continued to grow throughout the years. In 1960, BFA's Department of Sound Recording and the School of Engineering were joined together. BFA began offering a two-year course in film and television production management in September 1955.
Although the first class only graduated 28 students, the popularity of the course grew, and a Department of Management was formally established in 1987. In 1966, the Cultural Revolution brought hardships for schools throughout the People's Republic of China. BFA was equally affected; many of its professors left the academy.
However, in the beginning of 1976, after the end of the Cultural Revolution, many faculty members returned to BFA. By 1977, the academy had recovered from the Cultural Revolution. Finally, in 1978, the academy allowed new students to apply.
In 1989, the International School of the Academy opened, along with the Information Research Center in October 1999. Individual departments have also developed recently. Major development of the screenwriting department came with the establishment of a postgraduate course with Master's Degree in Screenwriting in 1985, followed by the establishment of the undergraduate program on Film Theories in 1987.
Further postgraduate courses for Ph.D. students’ in Screenwriting were established in 2004. The academy offers associate, bachelor, and master's degrees in many areas of film. BFA offers courses in script writing, film theory, film directing, film and television production, film acting, film and television art design, advertisements, animations, sound art, cinematography, photography, and entertainment management. Courses other than the undergraduate and postgraduate studies are also offered.
• Vocational courses
• Correspondence courses
• Night school courses