What is Premium Membership?

At a Glance

🎟 Unlock Lights Film School's Full Potential

Premium Membership is the key to unlocking all of Lights Film School's Slack-powered social features, including access to our growing international community; networking opportunities; an archive of students' work and teacher reviews in The Workshop; and eventual access to The Alumni Lounge upon graduation.

Because we're committed to helping you get the most out of your education, Premium Members also can redeem a special, 5-assignment teacher feedback bundle! It's included and valid for 1 year from the date of your enrollment in Lights Film School. This provides plenty of time for you to get teacher feedback on all five assignments built into the Lights Film School curriculum. 

We've found that most students complete their studies and associated assignments in 3 - 6 months, but you have more time if you need more time with the bundle - up to a full 12 months! It's also possible to commission an extra review à la carte, if your bundle expires or if you simply want additional assignment feedback down the line.

Once Upon a Time...

Once upon a time, Premium Membership charged a nominal yearly membership fee. "But why", you ask? Well, back in the day, when Lights Film School first started in 2007, there was no true community component to the program. Of course, community is an essential part of film school, so we knew we wanted to change that... But it took many years for technology to catch up with our vision for what an online community experience could and should be. 
In 2017 - building on lessons learned from a rudimentary networking experience we'd bootstrapped - we officially launched our community, powered by Slack. Almost immediately after we opened the virtual doors, it took off! Students started engaging with each other and with their teachers. As we'd hoped, it created a tremendous opportunity for filmmakers to connect across countries and cultures, all online, inspiring and learning from each other and from us!
What we hadn't anticipated is how much extra work and expense the community's success wound up creating for the Lights Film School team behind-the-scenes. We learned the hard way that running an active community does not take care of itself... It requires a continuous stream of teaching, managerial, and administrative attention. Once upon a time, yearly payments helped to offset the cost of that work and all associated expenses.
Thankfully, over the years, we've developed workflows that since have helped us cut down on the amount of high-touch attention that Premium Membership requires to maintain. Which is why on May 28, 2021 - as a part of systems-wide changes, and as a way of thanking our community for their longterm support - all students with active Premium Memberships were grandfathered into free membership! 🕺

A Quick Features Recap:

With Premium Membership, you can:

  • MEET OTHER FILMMAKERS: Find friends and collaborators in "The Cantina", a virtual meeting place for our international community of filmmakers comprising both students and teachers. Talk shop, share your work, have fun!  
  • BUILD YOUR NETWORK: Get introduced to your peers one-on-one in a special "Networking" area. Encounter new filmmaking perspectives, engage others with your own, and grow your professional circle around the world.  
  • GET YOUR FEEDBACK BUNDLE: Included and valid for one year from the date of your enrollment, the teacher feedback bundle entitles you to five professional reviews from our teaching team - one per module.  
  • LEVERAGE THE WORKSHOP: Learn from your peers' projects and teacher reviews. The entire archive of every available assignment and its feedback can be accessed. In essence, The Workshop is an open forum for constructive criticism!  
  • BECOME AN ALUMNI: Gain access to an exclusive community "Alumni Lounge" area by finishing your studies and assignments. Invest in longterm relationships, and benefit from inspiration and accountability!

What's All This About "Premium"...? 🤔

If you're an existing Lights Film School student, already have access to our Slack community, and are wondering "WTF is this Premium thing..." Then congrats, you're already a Premium Member behind-the-scenes! To be clear, you have not been subscribed to any sort of new service, and no action is required on your part. It has absolutely zero bearing on your current user experience... You're all set; simple as that. You can learn more in the "Duration of Your Studies and Lights Film School Access" section of our Terms of Use.