In The Spotlight

UT film school named one of the best in the country

UT film school named one of the best in the country

Oscars, Matthew McConaughey, Cate Blanchett, Lupita Nyong'o, Jared Leto
UT grad Matthew McConaughey won the Best Actor Oscar.  Photo by Jeff Kravitz/Film Magic

The Hollywood Reporter released its annual rankings of the top 25 film schools in the country, and the University of Texas at Austin made another strong showing on the exclusive list.

UT’s Department of Radio-Television-Film came in at No. 10 on the list, and was also ranked No. 2 among public programs in the U.S. The rankings are determined by surveys from members of filmmaking guilds and industry insiders. While the program finds itself with the same ranking as last year, this was one of the films school's most successful years.

One of the reasons for UT’s ranking is that it’s the only non-California public university that provides a “Semester in LA” program for undergraduates. The program will celebrate its 10th year and 1,000th student next summer. Other reasons cited include the new 3D production program and the massive $50 million donation from the Moody Foundation to the College of Communication.

In addition, notable RTF alumni burst into the spotlight with some major accomplishments this year.

Director Robert Rodriguez, one of the most prominent names to come out of the program, celebrated the launch of his own television channel, the El Rey Network, and the premiere of his From Dusk Till Dawn adaptation for television.

The other famous name attached to the school is, without a doubt, Matthew McConaughey. A well-known name in the film industry for years, we saw him undergo a “McConaissance” this year, as he snagged the Academy Award for Best Actor (for Dallas Buyers Club) and earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (for True Detective).

More recent graduates have also found major success as of late. Annie Silverstein walked out of the prestigious Cannes Film Festival with the top honor for student filmmakers thanks to her thesis film Skunk. She’s now considered one of the “25 New Faces of Independent Film” by Filmmaker Magazine.

The Hollywood Reporter's newest ranking caps off a banner year for UT — and hopefully sets the stage for even more film success in the future.