The Film Society of Lincoln Center and Film Comment magazine announce a call for entries for the seventh Critics Academy, the annual workshop for aspiring film critics, taking place during the 2018 New York Film Festival (September 28 – October 14).

The Critics Academy was designed in collaboration with IndieWire to nurture promising writers and provide a valuable platform to launch their careers. It was started in 2012 at the Locarno Film Festival and subsequently produced for the New York Film Festival that year. The program continues to emphasize the importance of diversity in the world of film criticism, supporting and nurturing women and writers of color, though its purview remains expansive and all-inclusive. Past participants have gone on to write for a wide range of print and online publications, including The Atlantic, Brooklyn Magazine, Film Comment, The Guardian, Hyperallergic, IndieWire, L.A. Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, National Review, New Republic, The New York Review of Books, Paper magazine, The Paris Review, Remezcla, Reverse Shot, Slant, Vice, The Village Voice, and Vulture, and some have become involved in film programming and publicity.

For the 2018 edition, ten selected critics will have the opportunity to attend NYFF press screenings and cover the festival in a variety of ways, from quick-turnaround film reviews to more in-depth articles and interviews for potential publication in Indiewire and beyond. Participants will partake in candid roundtable discussions with working critics and other members of the industry to put their work in context, and have the opportunity to workshop their writing in one-on-one sessions with editors from Film Comment. Past guest speakers have included Melissa Anderson, Richard Brody, Ashley Clark, K. Austin Collins, Ed Gonzalez, Mark Harris, Molly Haskell, Eric Hynes, Kent Jones, Dennis Lim, Aliza Ma, Wesley Morris, Mekado Murphy, Nick Pinkerton, B. Ruby Rich, Alison Willmore, Farihah Zaman, and many others.

“We’ve been inspired by the dynamic and talented writers who come through this program, many of whom have begun making names for themselves in the industry. We learn as much from our selected critics as hopefully they learn from the program,” says Michael Koresky, the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Director of Editorial and Creative Strategy. “Though we know it continues to be a difficult moment for the state of film criticism as a profession, we feel the Critics Academy remains a helpful and committed workshop for an excitingly engaged and diverse ascendant generation of film writers.”

Though the New York Film Festival Critics Academy is open to applicants outside the New York area, it unfortunately cannot provide travel or housing for the duration of the festival. While there is no specific age limit for applicants, the ideal candidate should have completed at least two years of college or have concluded academic studies no more than five years ago.

Update: The applications are now closed.

Emphasis will be placed on strength of writing and a diversity of voices, backgrounds, and film interests.

Requirements: Applicants must have completed a minimum of two 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.

Applications must include the following:

  • CV: A basic, one-page resume
  • Three articles or film reviews written in English. Please refrain from including lengthy academic papers or other scholarly materials that may not give an accurate reflection of the applicant’s capacity to succeed in this workshop.
  • One sample of another writer’s piece of critical writing that you find particularly compelling, intelligent, or provocative, with a short paragraph explaining why.
  • An approximately 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 criticsacademy@filmlinc.org.

The Film Society of Lincoln Center is committed to fostering the next generation of filmmakers, critics, and industry professionals working in the world of cinema. With academies during the New York Film Festival and throughout the year, FSLC builds new audiences and continues to advance New York’s vibrant film culture. For more information on these initiatives, visit filmlinc.org/filmmaker-initiatives.