MA International Film Business

Duration Full time 1 year
  • Film Studies
LocationExeter (Streatham)
London Film School
Start date September


MA International Film Business

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Our MA in International Film Business aims to train the next generation of innovative executives for the international film industry.

We will teach you about film finance and sales, distribution and marketing, creative management and development, digital strategy and festival curation and programming.

You will learn about the impact technology is having on the industry and gain insider access to a range of events including the Berlin Film Festival and European Film Market.

The London Film School is a world leading postgraduate filmmaking school and you will have the opportunity to access their extensive expertise, attend master-classes and industry events organised by the school as well as the opportunity to benefit from working with an industry mentor as part of the dissertation.

As you might expect from a ground breaking programme of study, assessment will be more than just essays. Instead you will give presentations, pitch ideas, and take on negotiation exercises. During your first term at the University of Exeter you will design, promote, and deliver a pop-up cinema event in the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum.

If you’re serious about pursuing a career in the film business this MA will give you the chance to develop the key business skills and networks you will need, and benefit from mentoring by leading UK and European industry professionals.

Programme Director

The MA in International Film Business is directed by Professor Will Higbee at the University of Exeter and in partnership with The London Film School.

Professor Higbee has particular expertise in French and African cinema as well as broader issues in national and international film. His research has been widely published and he is a regular participant in film festivals and events around the world.

You will be guided through an intensive year that goes beyond the course content and into the reality of working in the international film industry.

I currently work as a Project Supervisor for the China Film Foundation - Wu Tianming Film Fund for Young Talents (dedicated to young film talents discovery and development in China). My job involves: hosting training programmes and workshops for young screenwriters in China; selecting the best Chinese young producers for Producer Workshops at the Cannes Film Festival; organising the China Pavilion (international village) at Cannes; evaluating and selecting scripts for the Best Director’s Project Awards (Wu Tianming financing forum); and liaising and communicating with international film professionals and official foreign film bodies (national film funds, festivals etc.).

Read full profile

Kun Fang, MA International Film Business graduate.

Programme structure

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Learning and teaching

As an MA International Film Business student you will have access to the world-renowned expertise of the London Film School and the academic excellence and research resources of the University of Exeter. You will also be taught by industry experts and guest tutors, ensuring that the teaching you receive is highly relevant to the sector.

During your first term at the University of Exeter you will engage in a wide-ranging exploration of key markets in the international film business; analysing themes relating to distribution and exhibition, the role of festivals and the marketing of stars, event cinema and the notion of the producer as entrepreneur. Taught by leading academics and industry professionals, you will also learn about theoretical and practical concepts related to finance, investment, intellectual property, and business strategy - applying these concepts directly to the international film business.

During your second term at the London Film School you will study two modules exploring the innovative models being applied to the contemporary international film business. You will also visit the Berlinale (Berlin Film festival and European Film Market) as part of an organised field trip where you will gain experience of a major European Film Festival and film market.

At the London Film School you will participate in talks, seminars, master classes and question and answer sessions with film industry professionals; providing you with both the knowledge and contacts that few programmes can offer. You will learn about the entertainment value chain and, through a series of intensive full-day seminars, explore film business innovation.

Alongside essays and research reports, we use a range of innovative methods of assessment. You will give presentations and make pitches, take part in negotiation exercises and deliver a pop-up cinema event in the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum. In your final term you will work on your dissertation or dissertation project under the supervision of an industry mentor who will meet with you regularly to discuss your work, your ambitions and the development of your project.

While there is no requirement to make a film as part of the MA, you can take the initiative in the second and third term to work independently, outside of the programme, with other London Film School students who are studying on the MA screenwriting or filmmaking.

Field trip

Berlin International Film Festival field trip

In your second term you will take part in our field trip to the Berlin International Film Festival, including access to the European Film Market, which is a business to business event not open to the public.

The Berlinale takes place in February and is one of the world's oldest and most important international film festivals. About 400 films from all around the world are screened each year at the festival, most of which are international or European premieres.

As well as the excitement of premieres and the films in competition, the Berlinale is an important place for film industry executives to do business. The Berlinale hosts both the European Film Market and the International co-production market, where around 400 companies are represented. The festival also organises a variety of workshops, panel discussions and film programmes. As an accredited visitor you will be able to take advantage of many of these events.

Your expenses for accommodation, travel and accreditation are included in the cost of the programme.

You can find out more about the Berlinale from the festival website.


One of the key benefits of the MA in International Film Business is the opportunity it gives you to create a network of contacts. You will be working alongside fellow students and established industry professionals with opportunities to meet big players in a variety of industry fields. The film industry more than any other is about contacts, as a graduate of our programme you will have built a good network of your own.

As part of the wider College of Humanities at Exeter you will have the chance to use our Career Zone which can help you gain the skills, experience and expertise employers are looking for.

There are a wide range of opportunities to enhance your employability, along with the support you need to make important career decisions. You will be encouraged to speak to your personal tutor and academic staff about your future career, as they may be able to offer advice and guidance to assist your decision making to help you achieve your goals.


At Exeter you will have access to world-class university resources and facilities including the world-renowned Bill Douglas Cinema Museum. The museum holds a unique archival collection with particular strengths in the area of British Film Producers. In your first term you will design and deliver a Pop-Up Cinema event in the museum. Housed in the University’s state-of-the-art Research Commons study facility the museum houses more than 70,000 artefacts and includes extensive archival material on selected British film producers. The main University Library also has significant holdings in the area of film studies including books, journals and more than 10,000 films and television programmes on videotape and DVD. Our Audio-Visual collection in the University library comprises over 12,000 film titles, in addition to books and recordings of American music of all kinds. All our postgraduate students enjoy access to excellent computing facilities. The Postgraduate Common Room in the Queen’s Building provides a relaxing space where postgraduate students can meet and work together in reading and discussion groups.

While in London you will have access to the British Film Institute library and National Film Theatre as well as some of the facilities and expertise of the London Film School. For instance, there are weekly sessions on film aesthetics which you will be able to take part in as well as the industry mentoring programme for your dissertation, and opportunity to work as a producer for an LFS graduation film.

Entry requirements

Normally a minimum 2:1 Honours degree, or international equivalent, in a subject that includes some coverage of Film Studies, Business studies, Media and Communication.

Applications from industry professionals, or applicants with relevant work experience, seeking an academic qualification or the opportunity to enhance your skills or knowledge in this field will also be considered. Candidates may also be asked to submit a portfolio of original work or called for interview (which may be by Skype, telephone or video link).

Requirements for international students

If you are an international student, please visit our international equivalency pages to enable you to see if your existing academic qualifications meet our entry requirements.

English language requirements

IELTS (Academic)

Overall score 6.5. No less than 6.0 in any section. 


Overall score 90 with minimum scores of 21 for writing, 21 for listening, 22 for reading and 23 for speaking.

Pearson Test of English (Academic)

58 with no less than 55 in all communicative skills.

Other accepted tests

Information about other acceptable tests of linguistic ability can be found on our English language requirements page.

Pre-sessional English

Applicants with lower English language test scores may be able to take pre-sessional English at INTO University of Exeter prior to commencing their programme. See our English language requirements page for more information.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees per year 2020/21

  • All students: £21,500 full-time

Fee information

Fees can normally be paid by two termly instalments and may be paid online. You will also be required to pay a tuition fee deposit to secure your offer of a place, unless you qualify for exemption. For further information about paying fees see our Student Fees pages.

UK government postgraduate loan scheme

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,609 are now available for Masters degrees. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Global Excellence Scholarship

We are delighted to offer Global Excellence Scholarships for students of outstanding academic quality applying to postgraduate Taught programmes starting in autumn 2020.
Please note that this scholarship isn't offered for all our masters programmes.

Contact us

We are delighted to field any further enquiries you may have about the MA International Film Business.

Admissions Office - Exeter

Web: Enquire online
Phone: 0300 555 6060 (UK callers)
+44 (0)1392 723044 (EU/International callers)

MA International Film Business Programme Co-Director (University of Exeter)

Professor Will Higbee
Phone: +44 (0)1392 724216

London accommodation enquiries

The LFS can put you in contact with accommodation agencies and also help to broker introductions to current students looking for sharers. For more information please email LFS Admissions:

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Bill Douglas Cinema Museum

Throughout your studies, you will have access to outstanding resources, including the extensive holdings of the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum, the largest library on the moving image in any British university. Find out more.

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