Portugal Film School

2024 course

Our 2024 summer course will be July 1st to July 10th.

The course lasts 10 days.
If you want to apply please use the contact form on this website. State briefly why you want to participate, whether you have any previous experience, where you are from, what your age is, and what your current study or profession is.
We would also like you to indicate whether you are more interested in learning about the technical aspects of filmmaking or in creating content as a director.
We will then get back to you.

The price is € 995. This includes the full course and the use of all equipment and WiFi at the school.

For € 100 extra we offer camping for the entire 2 weeks in a one-person tent on a campsite next to the school. Mattresses and bedlinen are provided. 

Larger tents will be € 200 extra for the entire 2 weeks. They have real beds and standing room.

There is also the option of renting a small apartment in the village at around € 30 per night.

Please be aware that if you’re camping this means that conditions are simple and that you’ll be sharing the shower, toilet and kitchen with your fellow students.

The price excludes food and travel expenses.
There is a village café where students can eat at a special filmschool rate (8,50 euros for a full meal). The school also has a basic kitchen.

You will arrive on Sunday 30th June in the afternoon at Funcheira train station near our school, where you will be picked up, and leave on Thursday 11th July.

Your challenge will be to make a documentary portrait of 10–15 minutes about a local person. We only select local persons who can speak English as well as Portuguese. You will work in a team of 2-4 students and a coach.

Under the guidance of the highly experienced teachers and staff you will work to develop basic competence in using a high-end camera, microphone operation, drone operation, basic lighting principles and how to manage an interview in order to get a reliably good result. You will learn how to acquire and manage good raw material and how that correlates with the editing process as you develop your narrative. We will try to tailor our teaching to your individual learning goals as well as providing the overall learning of the things you really need to know in any circumstance.

We start with a two day foundation course for all students. The maximum number of course participants is 8.
After this, there will be separate classes for students who are more interested in technical subjects and those who are more interested in creating content, aiming to become directors.

Our technical classes include camera, tripod, sound, wireless sound, lighting, drone operation and basic editing knowledge. We use professional HD cameras, a DJI drone and Adobe Premiere editing software.

Director classes will concentrate on film analysis, research and interview methods, script writing, directing and content creation.

At the end of the first week, two teams of 4 students will be formed. Each team consists of a combination of tech students and content creators. It is supervised by a coach and will research, shoot and edit together.

In the middle of the course there is a free day. The beach is not far away!

You will make a 10-15 minute film with your team, your coach and your editor. A copy of each film will be provided to everyone to take home with their name on the credits. The film will also be put on our website.

This intensive course takes place in a small village in the countryside of southern Portugal. Classes are taught in the former village school which also houses our technical facilities. The course language is English, but we also speak German, Portuguese, French and Dutch.
Your teachers are experienced filmmakers from the Netherlands, England and Portugal.

At the end of the course you will receive a certificate. We will also provide a reference when requested by employers or institutions.


Ton van der Lee

Ton van der Lee has directed and produced more than 20 feature documentaries and series in Europe, Africa and the US. He has also written and produced TV drama and feature films. His films have been broadcast in many countries and have been shown at a number of international festivals. His feature documentary ‘Rock ‘n Roll Junkie’ about rockstar Herman Brood was voted best postwar biopic by Dutch viewers. He has also published 15 books. 

ton’s website

ton’s wikipedia page

Ian Davidson

Ian has worked in the TV business in the UK for over 20 years. Having worked as a video editor, sound recordist, cameraman, sound post-production engineer among other technical roles in film and television. With a business partner he set up Conscious Life, a subscription based online platform offering courses, live streamed events and documentaries.

A professional editor will be available at all times during the course