Big Ideas on the Big Screen: How Economic Thinking Can Make You a Better Filmmaker








Chapman University | Orange, CA | April 25-27

“The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed, the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually slaves of some defunct economist.”  John Maynard Keynes

Film can be a powerful medium for spreading ideas, influencing cultures, and changing our perceptions. Whether you are making comedies or dramas, documentaries or fiction, blockbusters or indie films, ideas will drive your film both on and off screen. Filmmakers often neglect economics because they fail to see the significance it brings to their lives and to their art. However, economic thinking can be a powerful tool for understanding human behaviors and motivations and for helping to make your film a reality.

With sessions led by economics professors, filmmakers, and expert storytellers, this seminar will give you a foundation of economic thinking that will help you see the world in a new way as well as important instruction in cinematic storytelling, distribution, and promotion.

This seminar is open to students 18-24 who have a demonstrated interest in filmmaking and is limited to 30 students, so apply early! 

Applications are closed.

Seminar Maps and Locations

Campus Map
Hotel - DoubleTree by Hilton Anaheim- Orange County
Chapman Parking - Lastinger Underground Structure
Lectures - Beckman Hall, Room 214
Meals - Randal Dinning Commons
Social - Streamliner Lounge - 186 N. Atchison, Orange, CA 92866

Download file Required Pre-Reading


Friday, April 25

12:00 pm – 4:00 pm: Hotel Check-in -  DoubleTree by Hilton Anaheim- Orange County
4:00 pm: Shuttle from hotel to sessions
4:00 pm – 4:30 pm: Seminar Check-in - Beckman Hall, Room 214
4:30 pm – 4:45 pm: Welcome and Opening Questionnaire
5:30 pm – 6:45 pm: Dinner - Randal Dinning Commons
8:00 pm – 10:00 pm: Social - Streamliner Lounge - 186 N. Atchison, Orange, CA 92866
10:00 pm: Shuttle from Streamliner Lounge to hotel

Saturday, April 26
7:00 am – 8:30 am: Breakfast at hotel
8:30 am: Shuttle from hotel to sessions
8:30 am – 9:00 am: Check-in - Beckman Hall, Room 214
9:45 am – 10:00 am: Break
10:00 am – 11:30 am: Activity: I, Movie
11:30 am – 1:00 pm: Lunch - Randal Dinning Commons
1:45 pm – 2:00 pm: Break
2:45 pm – 3:00 pm: Break
3:45 pm – 4:00 pm: Break
5:30 pm – 7:00 pm: Dinner - Randal Dinning Commons
7:00 pm – 7:45 pm: Reading Discussion Groups - Download filePre-Reading
8:00 pm – 10:00 pm: Social - Streamliner Lounge
10:00 pm: Shuttle from Streamliner Lounge to hotel

Sunday, April 27
7:00 am – 8:30 am: Breakfast at hotel
8:30 am: Shuttle from hotel to sessions
8:30 am – 9:00 am: Check-in - Beckman Hall, Room 214
9:45 am – 10:00 am: Break
10:45 am – 11:00 am: Break
11:00 am – 11:45 am: Discussion Groups
11:45 am – 1:15 pm: Lunch - Randal Dinning Commons
2:00 pm – 2:15 pm: Break
3:00 pm – 3:15 pm: Break
3:15 pm – 4:45 pm: Activity: Storyboarding
4:45 pm – 5:30 pm: That’s a Wrap!: Implementing Lessons Learned and Final Advice Panel (Lana Harfoush, Erin O’Connor, Maurice Black, Glen Whitman, Nick Tucker, Chander Tuttle)
5:30 pm – 6:00 pm: Closing Questionnaire and Closing Remarks
6:00 pm – 7:30 pm: Dinner - Randal Dining Commons
8:00 pm: Shuttle from Randal Dining Commons to hotel

Monday, April 28
7:00 am – 11:00 am: Hotel Check Out

Participant Testimonials

"At FEE, I was first exposed to ideas that would inspire the rest of my time in university, and eventually my career." - Zachary Caceres

"[I really enjoyed this] opportunity to learn about not only what is happening in America, but throughout the world. FEE's goal is to 'inspire, educate, and connect' and I'm proud to say it has achieved all that and more with me." - Jeanette H.

"This seminar has provided me with the knowledge necessary to educate my peers and support an educated, non-biased argument for free market economics." - Santana W.

Read what other students had to say about our summer seminars.


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