Calling all aspiring New York area film critics! The New York Film Festival Critics Academy is back, for the 52nd annual event taking place September 26 – October 12. The application process for this year's workshop begins today and the deadline is Friday, August 22.

The Film Society of Lincoln Center, along with Indiewire and its parent company SnagFilms, and in partnership with Film Comment magazine, are now accepting entries for the 2014 New York Film Critics Academy, which is designed to help aspiring film critics with the process of kickstarting their careers. For this year's NYFF, six participants will have the opportunity to immerse themselves a wide variety of international cinema while dealing with the practical challenges of covering a festival at the epicenter of New York's film culture. The participants will cover the festival with reviews of films in the selection, articles on sidebar events, in-depth reflections on the various program sections, or interviews with the festival’s guests.

The 2014 NYFF Critics Academy will begin several days prior to the start of this year's NYFF, with roundtable discussions continuing over the course of the next five days. Participants will also have the option of attending press screenings earlier in the month. Critics Academy members will then work on covering the festival after it opens on September 26, with guidance from Indiewire’s Chief Film Critic and Senior Editor Eric Kohn and members of the Film Society and Film Comment magazine. The workshop will officially conclude on October 12, the last day of the festival. 

In a very short amount of time, the multifaceted nature of the Critics Academy has allowed the workshop approach to have a direct impact on the way budding critics think about the opportunities to cover films around the world. In advance of this year's NYFF, critics will engage in candid discussions with working critics, distributors, filmmakers, and others directly impacted by their work to bring a greater context to its ongoing relevance. They will then provide written work for Indiewire's Criticwire blog (a part of their Criticwire Network) and Film Comment magazine, the official publication of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, as well as other outlets to be arranged closer to the event.

The Critics Academy first launched at the 2012 Locarno Film Festival and a local version followed that fall during the 2012 New York Film Festival. Last January, the Sundance Film Festival hosted a Critics Academy funded in part by the Roger Ebert Scholarship for Film Criticism. Earlier this month, finalists were announced for Critics Academy at the Locarno Film Festival, whose participants are covering the 67th edition of Swiss event currently underway through August 16.

Accepted candidates to this year's New York Film Festival Critics Academy will be notified by September 1. Emphasis will be placed on a “diversity of voices, backgrounds, and cinematic interests.”


Applicants must have completed a minimum of three years of undergraduate study or have no more than two years of experience creating critical and/or journalistic content about movies. They must demonstrate an interest in film criticism and/or film journalism as well as the ability to speak and write fluently in English. They must also live in New York City or the greater New York area.

Applicants must include the following:

– CV: A basic one-page résumé

– Five writing samples about film. These can take the form of film reviews, scholarly papers, blog posts, college newspaper clips, podcasts, or any other work that you think demonstrates your skills.

– A 500-word statement of intent. Tell us about your background and why you would make an ideal candidate for the Critics Academy. Make sure to note any particular interests (genres, national cinemas, etc.). Passion, strong writing skills, and a deep knowledge of film history matter more than overall professional experience.

Please send applications to: [email protected]