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Stony Brook Southampton Adds First MFA Degree in Film
in the SUNY System

Applications Now Being Accepted for Fall 2015

New York and Southampton, NY, February 3, 2015 - Stony Brook University announced today that the NY State Education Department has approved SUNY's first ever Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Film. With locations in Manhattan and Southampton, Stony Brook Southampton's innovative three-year graduate program in narrative film is led by Graduate Director Christine Vachon, Co-Founder of legendary indie production company, Killer Films. Under Vachon, students receive real-world, practical experience at an affordable SUNY tuition and an opportunity to work on movies produced by Killer Films.

Students in the 45-48 credit MFA program have worked on several Killer Films productions, including STILL ALICE starring Julianne Moore, which earned her the Best Actress Golden Globe Award,  the Screen Actors Guild Award and an Academy Award® nomination, and the forthcoming NASTY BABY, starring Kristen Wiig and Alia Shawkat. Killer has produced over 80 acclaimed features, from Academy Award® winning BOYS DON'T CRY and Academy Award® nominated FAR FROM HEAVEN to Emmy Award® winning HBO mini-series MILDRED PIERCE, and soon-to-be released CAROL, directed by Todd Haynes, starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara.

Robert Reeves, Associate Provost of Southampton Graduate Arts, said, "We believe affordable, project-driven, in-the-practice programs are the future of graduate arts education. The new MFA in Film is the ideal fit for the advanced training we already offer in creative writing and theater. Our programs emphasize original storytelling and are taught by a faculty of the most distinguished practicing artists in the country. We welcome all aspiring filmmakers who want to pursue their art without signing on to a lifetime of debt."

Vachon said, "The coming year marks milestones for Killer Films and Stony Brook Southampton. We'll celebrate the official launch of our MFA in Film as well as the 20th anniversary of Killer Films. These are great achievements for us as an independent film company and a graduate school. We're excited to continue re-inventing the traditional film school model and turning it on its head."

The MFA program focuses on screenwriting, directing, and producing, with production cycles culminating in a feature screenplay, a portfolio of short films including an MFA thesis film or a final producer's package. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Deadline to qualify for financial aid is March 15, 2015 and for domestic students not applying for aid, the deadline is July 1.

Magdalene Brandeis, Associate Director, said, "We were challenged to create an MFA program that best equipped a variety of students to stay true to their voices and their stories while keeping up with the ever-changing technological and financial landscapes of the film industry. We've pioneered an MFA in Film that is as adaptive as the medium."

RSVP to to attend the upcoming Open House and learn more about courses, faculty, scholarships and financial aid.  


Thursday, February 12 (6-7 pm)
387 Park Avenue South, 3rd Floor


Thursday, February 26 (7 pm EST)

About Southampton Graduate Arts
Southampton Graduate Arts is a vibrant gathering of MFA programs in creative writing, theatre and film. Film classes are offered on campuses in Southampton and Manhattan. The programs attract a faculty of world renowned authors, playwrights, directors and filmmakers. The film program, added in 2012 and launched as an MFA in 2015, features the latest Canon cameras, state-of-the-art lighting equipment, and is supported by the prestigious Sklar Collection on the history of American cinema. For more information, visit or contact 631-632-5010.