Film vs. TV: What’s the Difference?

With CAP coming up, it is important to start considering classes to take next year. Often overlooked in this consideration are many of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes and programs offered at Fayetteville High School. Two of these programs are Film and TV. They sound similar at first, but there are many key differences that students should keep in mind when deciding whether or not to take one or the other.

The first and most obvious difference is the type of content produced by each class. In the film production classes, according to film teacher Lesley Allen, students produce short films, which may include animation, documentaries, music videos, as well as experimentals, PSAs and advertisements. TV, however, focuses on news reporting via the Bulldog Weekly and monthly Breaking the Leash shows, which are regularly aired to students.

Another important consideration is the way these classes are paced. In TV, producing a weekly or monthly show means strict deadlines that students must meet, even if the finished product is not exactly what was aimed for. The film, on the other hand, emphasizes in-depth production and more polished finished pieces. While there are still hard deadlines to be met, they are not as intense as what will be expected of TV students.

There are also many baseline similarities between the classes or things that the student can expect regardless of which program they involve themselves in. According to TV teacher John Gossett, the first-year courses are especially similar, focusing on the basics of video production and proper use of camera and editing equipment. It may be beneficial to think of the fundamentals courses as an introduction to video production in general, with the most important distinction being the higher-level classes they allow access to.

Additionally, the film and TV programs are, at a basic level, working towards the same goal. “We do them in different ways,” Gossett said. “but at our core we are all storytellers trying to reach our audience the best way possible.” This focus on storytelling through audiovisual media is the fundamental purpose of both of these programs, and any prospective film or TV student should be ready to spend time focusing on those things.

On a separate but related note, both programs have a Student Activities Broadcasting (SAB) class available to upper-level students. Film students have access to SAB-Communications, which creates videos for and live streams of academic events like choir concerts, graduation and the DECA fashion show. TV runs SAB-Athletics, which live streams sports events at FHS. Both are extra classes that students can take alongside the regular TV or film courses.

So, there are a few things that students should keep in mind when deciding to take one of these classes next year. Both programs are very demanding; they often require students to work outside of school hours and off-campus. Film creates singular pieces while TV produces a regular, broadcasted show on a strict timeline. “If a student is not self-motivated and does not have good time management skills,” said Allen “then TV may not be their best option.”. Both are great classes looking for more members in the coming year, and any student interested in video production and storytelling should definitely consider signing up. Students can find TV’s shows and live streams on YouTube @FHS TV – Fayetteville High.