• At South Seas, you get industry ready in one year. This means tackling it head on: Trying out different Film / TV roles, then going into your selected major to become an employable professional.

    One year is a short time and your schedule will be tight. Be prepared for some deep-end, immersive learning-through-action. Over the course of the year, you will participate in over 30 productions, while being closely tutored by industry professionals.

    We want you to build momentum so that at as you graduate, instead of starting out, you can just carry on. Successfully complete this course and you’ll receive the New Zealand Diploma in Screen Production (Level 5) [Ref. 3212].

    Animation College NZ, as the registered PTE provides and awards the qualifications offered by South Seas Film & TV School. When you enrol with South Seas Film & TV School, your enrolment is with Animation College NZ. Animation College is a Category 1 Provider, the highest rating a school can be awarded by the Government.

    A button to easily access key student information about this qualification.

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  • TERM 1

  • Foundation

    You will complete a series of practical exercises, having go at Editing, Camera, Lighting, Audio, Directing, Production and Art Dept. This will help you to choose your specialist skills options.

  • TERM 2

  • Skills Development

    A series of practical workshops and short Doco and Drama Productions will prepare you to work in different production environments.

  • TERM 3

  • Intensive Workshops

    A series of more intensive workshops and longer form Docos and Dramas, including 2 weeks of shooting Drama scenes on location with an industry crew and Working on sports coverage with Sky TV Outside Broadcast van.

  • TERM 4

  • Building Showreels

    You will complete pre-production planning, production recording and post production of a short documentary or a drama film.



  • Things change quickly. Our course content is reviewed every year to remain cutting edge and relevant.

    We don’t want you to merely know what’s waiting for you upon graduation. We want to give you hands-on experience in navigating both the jobs and the realities of the film industry.

    Every year, we bring in a host of working industry professionals to interact with you. One of the highlights of the year is Dragons’ Den, where students pitch Film and TV ideas to a panel of hard-core professionals.

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  • production

  • Production

    You love being in the middle of the action, with everyone depending on you. You revel in relationships, knowing what people do best and how to get it out of them – for the best possible creative outcome. You see the big picture. You see the global marketplace, the audience, the future.

    There are various career paths in the production of Film & Television, from assistant to executive. Work your way up. Rethink the rules. Redefine the industry.

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  • Directing & Screenwriting

    You are full of ideas. Your enthusiasm is contagious. You can imagine things that don’t yet exist – they are as real as the chair you’re sitting on. A natural self starter, your inborn motivation doesn’t need annual bonuses or company retreats. You’re willing the take the road less travelled to follow your dreams.

    Directing and scriptwriting is never a risk-free, calculated career choice – it’s a choice you just have to make. But never fear, the skills you gain will open up many opportunities. There is an on-going need for storytellers across all mediums.

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  • Documentary Directing

    You see stories all around you. You’re attuned to what goes on in your neighbourhood – and the world. You see cinematic potential in things others ignore. You make visible what would otherwise go unnoticed. You makes sense of what would otherwise be chaotic. You are a change maker.

    Documentary Directing is a gateway to a world of possibilities. You can do a lot on a low budget, so many choose to carve out their own career.

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  • Camera, Lighting & Audio

    Your interest in technology is only rivalled by your creativity in using it. You are fearless. You’re a team player who knows what it means to pull your weight. You enjoy action and are able to learn on your feet.

    Camera, lighting and audio are rapidly changing areas of Film and TV production. They are also the most action packed and game changing. Forget spacing out in the office. Forget routine. Never be bored again.

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  • Art & Design

    You are an artist, who enjoys team work with other like-minded people. You love transforming actors and sets into something magical. You love the buzz of production around you, with its triumphs and catastrophes. Where lesser individuals melt down, your creative brain kicks into high gear to solve the problem at hand.

    At South Seas, you get comfortable with all areas of production design – including makeup, props, costumes and set dressing. There is plenty of work to be done. The art department in just one major film can employ hundreds of people.

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  • Post Production

    One part nerd, one part artist – you think in sounds and images. You may not know what the weather is like outside, but you know how to craft a story out of anything. You are the lifeline of the confused director, the unsung hero of Film & Television.

    Post production offers an access to a wide variety of roles: from editing to special effects, colouring… With 3D imaging and augmented reality, the lines between post production, cinematography and art department are getting blurred. Possibilities are endless – and you can be in the frontline.



* If you want to prepare before applying, you can download the application questions from Application & Enrollment page


  • Film & Television Course Overview

    The 39 week long course is made up of four terms. In term 1, students receive basic training in all essential production skills. In terms 2-4, students focus their studies on a selected specialist skill.

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  • Film & Television Specialisation Options

    • Art & Design
    • Camera, Lighting, Audio
    • Post Production Editing
    • Production Management
    • Drama Directing/Script Writing
    • Documentary Directing/Research

    South Seas also offers diploma courses in Animation, Photography and On Screen Acting.


  • We aim for Film & Television graduates to be able to:

    • Confidently apply for trainee positions in the Film & Television industry, knowing they have the right skills and the all important practical experience to do the work they will be expected to do.
    • Develop rewarding industry careers.
    • Continue learning, building on a firm foundation of knowledge and practical skills obtained on the course.

    To prepare for the Film industry, students will:

    • Assemble a show reel of practical exercises you produced or participated in during the year.
    • Receive a detailed Skill Report. The report provides prospective employers with a good overview of your industry skill levels and grades achieved in your specialist subjects.

    Your show reel, Diploma, Skill Reports and CV will form the basis of your applications for industry work or advanced studies.

    Employment prospects in Film & Television

    For the last 22 years, South Seas has been the main practical training provider for the NZ Film, Television and Media Industry. To date, over 1,860 graduates have obtained work in NZ and around the world. South Seas must achieve graduate work outcomes in order to retain government funding for NZ students.

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  • Majoring Options

    In terms 2-4, you will obtain advanced levels in your selected specialist skill / major. Please note that a place on the specialist skill of your first choice is not guaranteed. The selection process reflects the competitive nature of the Film & Television industry and is based on creative, technical and personal skill assessments in Term 1.

    The placements in each specialist skill / major are usually limited to the following numbers:

    • Art & Design (14-16)
    • Camera, Lighting, Audio (32)
    • Post Production Editing (24-28)
    • Production Management (18-20)
    • Drama Directing/Script Writing (24-28)
    • Documentary Directing/Research (12-16)
  • Film & Television General Studies

    Regardless of your specialisation, you will also partake in some generic studies to gain a broad understanding of Film & Television as a communication and entertainment medium and an introduction to industry business structures, regulatory bodies and funding agencies etc.

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2019 Calendar for Film & Television Production + On Screen Acting Courses

Graduation TBA

Semester 1

Semester 2

Classes begin: Tue 29 Jan 2019 Classes begin: Mon 15 Jul 2019
Term ends: Fri 12 Apr 2019 Term ends: Fri 20 Sep 2019
Mid-semester break Mid-semester break
Classes begin: Tue 23 Apr 2019 Classes begin: Mon 30 Sep 2019
Term ends: Fri 28 Jun 2019 Term ends: Fri 29 Nov 2019


  • Real Film Industry Environment

    The Film & Television production course has been developed in consultation with the NZ Film & Television industry. The training is highly practical and intensive. Everything you learn is up-to-date and industry relevant to provide you with skills, knowledge and operational practices you need to successfully establish an industry career.

    Real Film & Television Crews

    The Film & Television diploma course has a maximum total intake of 128 students. For most practical production exercises in Terms 1-3, the intake is divided into work groups of 8 students. This ensures that each student will always have specific skills tasks, adequate access to equipment and, where necessary, tutor support when completing their practical projects.

    Real Film Industry Knowledge

    The course is made up of various Local Course Modules (LCM’s). Each module has relevant assessed practical exercises and practical or written tests which must be completed in order to obtain the 125 course credits required for a New Zealand Qualification Authority (NZQA) registered Diploma pass.

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Requirements & Fees

  • Film & Television Entry Requirements

    • The Diploma in Film & Television Production Course is open to all New Zealand and International students.
    • New Zealand applicants must be 17 years or older.
    • International applicants must be 18 years or older.
    • International students must have English language skills equivalent to IELTS level 6.
    • All applicants must also complete the course application form and written requirements as well as complete a formal interview. This can be done in person or via Skype or telephone for international and distant NZ students.

    The Highest NZQA Rating

    The NZ Qualifications Authority (NZQA) registered Film & Television diploma course has an excellent reputation and has delivered high quality graduates to the industry since 1992. South Seas is audited by external assessors and the NZQA at regular intervals and ever since the audits started we have received NZQA’s highest category 1 rating.

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Film & Television Course Fees

Film & Television Production Diploma Course – Fees & Costs
Domestic Student Fees International Student Fees
$10,557 + $340 Student Services Levy $19,500 + $2,000 Course Fee
(Eligible for “Fees-Free” study)

The New Zealand Government has imposed an international student levy on tuition and course related fees. From 1 January 2019 the levy will be 0.89% of the compulsory tuition fees.