A Word from our President

James Griffin

VFS President

To comprehend VFS, you might think of any major entertainment conglomerate that creates content across a range of industries. VFS functions like a major studio, with multiple production facilities that are essential for creating content for film, TV, games, animation, design, digital applications, and more. Content creation is our core learning tool. We place our education in outstanding facilities with master instructors and mentors, and we regularly update and realign curriculum to be in lockstep with the most current industry standards. This is all to help students originate, produce, and exhibit their best possible creative and technical work.

From an education perspective, we are unassailable. Our one-year programs go deep and are immersive, efficient, and transformational. This is no accident. We have an inspired education department – expert at curriculum design and preparing industry specialists to be effective instructors. In this, we stand alone.

When we say “results matter,” we are not only referring to what you accomplish at VFS but what you will accomplish in your career. These are the results that truly matter. Taken as a whole, our alumni have achieved the highest levels of success on the highest grossing content across the entertainment and design sectors. No school or institution can come close to competing with the sheer magnitude of achievements by our alumni.

Our Educational Philosophy

The keys to the VFS educational model are structured intensity and immersion in the industry. Vancouver Film School was founded on the philosophy that one year of concentrated workthat balances industry-led theory and hands-on production, gives students the necessary skills to craft a professional-level portfolio or reel.

VFS offers 15 signature post-secondary programs — spanning every aspect of the entertainment arts — that are developed and taught by award-winning industry professionals. Each program’s intensive curriculum evolves along with demands of the industry, and the best, current industry practices.

Students’ experiences emulate the professional industry world. Students are physically and mentally immersed in Vancouver’s film, animation, game, and design industries that surround our campuses, and benefit from career guidance and expertise from industry mentors, instructors, and guest speakers.

Vancouver Film School Values

We Build Trust. We live by our word, deliver what we promise, and build trust with students, employees, and industry partners.


We Embrace Change. Change inspires us to always be creating. Our tools are curiosity, knowledge, and imagination.


We Collaborate. We are united in working toward a more inclusive world. Growth comes from teamwork and mentorship. We celebrate difference, we respect and care for each other.


The History of VFS

Vancouver Film School opens its doors for the first time, to a class of 12 Film Production students. 

VFS introduces the world’s first fully dedicated production training centre for new media. 

VFS launches its Classical Animation program.

VFS initiates North America’s first multimedia program.

VFS launches its one-year program to prepare students for careers in 3D Animation & Visual Effects.

Vancouver Film School steps in front of the camera, launching its Acting for Film & Television program.

VFS adds Canada’s largest digital paint and effects lab to its Classical Animation program. 

VFS launches its Writing for Film & Television program.

VFS opens three new facilities: an expanded film centre, a multi-studio acting facility, and a relocated and expanded Classical Animation centre.

VFS introduces Makeup Design for Film & Television as a part-time program. The program became a full-time, one-year program in 2006.

Vancouver Film School makes some noise! VFS launches its Sound Design for Visual Media program.

VFS launches Foundation Visual Art & Design and Acting Essentials programs to introduce students to the discipline.

VFS opens its first international Admissions office in Mumbai, India.

VFS launches one of the first Game Design programs in North America.

To celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2007, VFS offers over $1 million in scholarships to talented new students.

VFS’s YouTube channel launches.

VFS officially launches the VFS Blog, an unprecedented source of school news and alumni success stories.

VFS partners with YouTube to launch a scholarship competition for the creators of three videos submitted and voted upon by the YouTube community.

VFS opens its new Animation Campus, complete with animation rig from Long Winter Studios, and Qube! render farm.

VFS opens the innovative Programming for Games, Web & Mobile.

VFS opens its new Film Campus.

In cooperation with Shanghai University, VFS launches the Shanghai-Vancouver Film School in Shanghai.

VFS launches its new, streamlined website that better showcases the student experience and the school’s successes.

VFS introduces a new Animation Concept Art program to its curriculum.


Vancouver Film School is a global leader in entertainment arts education, offering 15 programs to more than 1,000 students across eight campuses.

Beyond Capture


After a rebranding in March of 2018, Beyond Capture (formerly known as Mimic) quickly established itself as a world class performance capture stage, offering performance capture, motion capture, photogrammetry, audio capture and post processing services.

Prior to this in 2017, a partnership was established between Vancouver Film School (VFS) and Beyond Capture. With a mandate for both organizations to support one another with commercial and educational resources, including Beyond Capture building its 64,000 cubic ft studio space within VFS's film campus, current and future generations of talented students are well-positioned for career success in creative arts industries. beyond-capture.com


Shanghai VFS


In 2014, Vancouver Film School launched a campus within Shanghai University that incorporates the VFS teaching model for several entertainment arts programs.

The SHVFS campus is a stand-alone school delivering the same award-winning VFS curriculum with the intention of rapidly growing the entertainment and movie sector in Shanghai.

“Of all the film schools in all the world, why did Shanghai – one of the most powerful cities on earth – pick VFS to help rebuild their entertainment industry?” says VFS president James Griffin. “If you look at the speed and efficiency of our education model, if you look at the pervasive impact VFS graduates have had across numerous industry sectors and our international alumni network, Shanghai’s choice makes perfect sense. No other school or university is structured to build an industry the way VFS can.” shvfs.cn/en


SHVFS Alumni Success

  • 200 students have graduated from SHVFS in the past 6 and a half years.
  • 133 graduates have worked on 97 feature films with a total box office exceeding 9 billion dollars.
  • 41 graduates have worked on 25 tv/web series.
  • 28 graduates have worked on 21 3D animation projects.
  • 30 graduates have worked on 28 video games.


SHVFS Alumni

SHVFS Alumni


B.C. Private Training Institutions Branch

The Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education sets out basic education standards for registered private career training institutions in British Columbia and establishes standards of quality, which must be met by accredited institutions. Their mission is to support quality education in British Columbia's private post-secondary career training sector through regulating standards and providing protection to students.

British Columbia Education Quality Assurance

EQA designation attests to the high standard of the quality of the educational services provided by the institution to its students. This seal allows students to easily identify which provincial institutions the government of BC recognizes as having met the quality assurance standards and offer consumer protection to learners. EQA designation is a requirement to be registered with Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) as a CIC Designated Learning Institution (DLI).

VFS holds a designation certificate under the Private Training Act.

Industry Partnerships

As part of staying in tune with the needs of industry, and the needs of our students, we nurture special relationships with pivotal firms in the fields we teach. We are proud to name the following corporate leaders as our partners:

5 Alarm Music is America's largest independent production music library for film, television, radio, and commercials. Owned by parent company DMI Music & Media Solutions, 5 Alarm Music provides custom and production music from award-winning composers and houses over 40 music libraries with a broad selection of cost-effective stock music solutions, as well as original score and music composition services. In partnering with VFS, 5 Alarm Music wishes to help students gain an understanding of music licensing and film and television production music.

For more information on 5 Alarm Music, visit www.5alarmmusic.com

Adobe Systems is a software company founded in 1982 and a world leader in digital imaging and creative design applications. With an extensive product line, Adobe provides every VFS program with the latest Adobe Creative Suites . The VFS licensing agreement with Adobe enables every student to maximize each piece of software to its fullest potential. The partnership with VFS continues to grow with Adobe, providing inventive solutions for our creatively driven students.


For more information on Adobe, visit www.adobe.com

Adobe Partners by Design is an alliance between Adobe Systems Incorporated and 28 of the top art, design, and film schools in the world. This international program was established in 2000 for select schools, and brings faculty, students, and the design community together to help tomorrow's designers fully develop their skills. Adobe provides member schools with exclusive benefits such as faculty training on products and Adobe software licenses, ensuring that students have full access to every tool they need.

John Walker and 42 other co-founders created Autodesk, Inc. in 1982, and for the last 23 years, Autodesk has been committed to the people, software, and technology to help customers realize their ideas. Autodesk first revolutionized the software industry with the AutoCAD® product, which introduced drafting to the PC. Today, Autodesk is the world's leading software and services company in the fields of manufacturing, infrastructure, building, media, entertainment, and wireless services. Autodesk is a fully diversified software company that provides solutions for creating, managing, and sharing digital assets. Through our educational licensing agreement, VFS has a partnership with Autodesk that means our students have complete access to all the educational and creative potential of the top digital animation tools available; Maya, 3ds MAX, MotionBuilder and Combustion. What unites us is the same spirit that Autodesk was founded on: innovation that drives real-world success.


For more information on Autodesk, visit www.autodesk.com

Avid is the industry leader in digital audio production, and VFS is the only school in the Pacific Northwest to offer Operator-level Certification in Avid music and post-production systems. Avid provides the VFS Sound department with Pro Tools, the most widely used and advanced development in digital audio workstation technology. VFS instructors work closely with Avid to develop a curriculum that prepares students for the needs of the industry.


For more information on Avid, visit www.avid.com

Beyond Capture Studios (formerly Mimic) is a 64,000 cu. ft soundproof state-of-the-art Performance Capture and Motion Capture facility with highly trained staff in the heart of Gastown, Vancouver, Canada. Beyond makes Performance Capture accessible, using their expertise in all areas of production to support current and future innovators in creating industry-challenging media.

For more information on Beyond Capture, visit www.beyond-capture.com

Dell Technologies helps organizations and individuals build their digital future and transform how they work, live, and play. The company provides customers with the industry’s broadest and most innovative technology and services portfolio for the data era. In 2020, Dell Technologies helped VFS keep its curriculum on track by providing 900 Dell Precision 5820 workstations with NVIDIA Quadro RTX 5000 GPUs and Teradici PCoIP remote protocol solutions in their labs, allowing students to work with creative applications while cutting render times by more than half.

For more information on Dell Technologies, visit www.delltechnologies.com

Final Draft is the number-one selling screenwriting software in the world. Industry giants such as James Cameron, JJ Abrams, and Aaron Sorkin recommend using Final Draft for writing screenplays. The partnership with VFS provides our students with access to the market leader in screenwriting and a preferred file format of the Writers Guild of America West Online Script Registration.



For more information on Final Draft, visit www.finaldraft.com/edu

HP is the world's largest information technology company. The HP philosophy of providing service, innovative thinking, and problem solving drives a strong relationship with VFS. Many VFS programs rely heavily on technology provide by HP systems and service. The people of HP are quick to provide solutions, and their ideas and ability to come to table quickly improve the educational excellence at VFS.


For more information on HP, visit www.hp.com

Long Winter Studios is an independent media group specializing in CG animation and asset creation. They work in the game, film, and education industries. Long Winter Studios has created a signature proprietary rig for VFS Animation & Visual Effects students to use in curriculum, student projects, and promotion. 


For more information on Long Winter Studios, visit longwintermembers.com/

Launched in 2018, Machinations is the ultimate game design tool that empowers game designers with out-of-the-box predictions to anticipate and fix balancing issues. Able to simulate thousands of game events in minutes, Machinations supports studios globally in shipping better games faster.

Trusted by world-class studios such as Ubisoft, Gameloft, Wargaming, and King, Machinations fosters a community of 50,000+ game developers across 300+ studios worldwide and is taught in over 700 academic institutions.

For more information on Machinations, visit machinations.io

McDSP is an innovative Emmy award-winning Silicon Valley audio software and hardware company founded in 1998 by Colin McDowell. McDSP technology can be found in pro audio plug-ins for popular digital audio workstations including Pro Tools, Logic, Cubase, and Avid live sound systems. McDSP software is used heavily in audio post-production for film, TV, music, games, seeing use by companies such as Audiokinetic, Bioware, and Microsoft. By partnering with McDSP, VFS is able to provide Sound Design for Visual Media students industry-level software for the Mix Labs and Mix Theatre, ensuring they learn on the same tools they’ll use throughout their professional careers.

For more information on McDSP, visit mcdsp.com

Native Instruments is a leading manufacturer of software and hardware for computer-based music production and live performance. Their mission is to develop innovative, fully integrated solutions for all professions, styles and genres. The resulting products regularly push technological boundaries, covering the whole field of digital music creation and sound. The official partnership between Native Instruments and Vancouver Film School's Sound Design program provides students with access to an arsenal of software and tools, including Kontakt, the industry standard sampler with an impressive sound library, to help realize their creative ideas.


For more information on Native Instruments, visit www.native-instruments.com

In 1999, NVIDIA’s invention of the GPU (graphics processing unit) made real-time programmable shading possible, giving artists an infinite palette for expression. In 2018, the introduction of the Turing GPU architecture and NVIDIA RTX ray-tracing technology paved the way to new levels of art and realism in real-time graphics. Game developers, design tool makers, and film studios have embraced NVIDIA RTX. Leaders like Pixar, ILM, Sony, Epic, Adobe, EA, Microsoft, and many more have adopted real-time ray tracing. In partnership with Dell Technologies, NVIDIA has equipped VFS’s more than 900 Dell Precision 5820 tower workstations with NVIDIA Quadro RTX 5000 GPUs, used across the school’s programs.

For more information on NVIDIA, visit www.nvidia.com

Perforce, the Fast Software Configuration Management System, is an award-winning tool that versions and manages source code and digital assets for enterprises large and small. Perforce seamlessly handles distributed development, and supports developers across a large number of platforms.

Perforce ensures development integrity by grouping multi-file updates into atomic changes, enables concurrent development, and intelligently manages multiple software releases using its Inter-File Branching system.


For more information on Perforce, visit www.perforce.com

Pixologic Incorporated, maker of the award-winning 2D/3D sculpting, texturing, and painting application ZBrush, was founded in 1997, and develops and markets innovative software tools for the film and video, games, graphic design and illustration markets. Pixologic is privately owned and is located in California with offices in Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Bordeaux, France. VFS is the first Canadian school to officially partner with ZBrush, with the partnership agreement providing VFS with full access to educational licenses for their cutting-edge software, ZBrush. ZBrush is an integrated modeling, texturing, and illustration environment. The innovative set of real-time sculpting, texturing, and deformation tools is used in major film studios and game companies worldwide. Its instant feedback and real-time response makes it the most natural feeling digital sculpting tool available today. As a stand-alone application, ZBrush offers tremendous flexibility and appeals to a wide audience.


For more information on Pixologic - Makers of ZBrush, visit www.pixologic.com/zbrush

Teradici is the inventor of the PCoIP remote display protocol and aims to deliver the best virtual desktop and workstation experience in the world, enabling the most demanding use cases with requirements like top secret security, complex IT infrastructures, and intensive graphics performance. Teradici provides VFS with PCoIP technology enabling students and staff to work remotely with industry-standard production applications.

For more information on Teradici, visit www.teradici.com

Epic Games’ Unreal Engine is the world’s most open and advanced real-time 3D creation tool. Continuously evolving to serve not only its original purpose as a state-of-the-art game engine, today it gives creators across industries the freedom and control to deliver cutting-edge content, interactive experiences, and immersive virtual worlds. Epic Games works with VFS to provide instructor certification, technical expertise, and guest lectures.

For more information on Epic Games and Unreal Engine, visit www.unrealengine.com

Unity is the world’s leading platform for creating and operating real-time 3D (RT3D) content. Creators ranging from game developers to artists, architects, automotive designers, filmmakers, and others use Unity to make their imaginations come to life. Unity’s platform provides a comprehensive set of software solutions to create, run and monetize interactive, real-time 2D and 3D content for mobile phones, tablets, PCs, consoles, and augmented and virtual reality devices. Apps developed by Unity creators were downloaded more than three billion times per month in 2019 on more than 1.5 billion unique devices. Approximately 75 per cent of games created at VFS are made in Unity. Unity also hosts guest lectures and events, and will be serving on the school’s curriculum advisory boards.

For more information on Unity, visit www.unity.com


Programs at this Campus:

Acting Essentials

Acting for Film & Television

Makeup Design for Film & Television

Writing for Film, Television & Games

Other Resources/Services at this Location:



Programs at this Campus:

Makeup Design for Film & Television

Other Resources/Services at this Location:

Student Services

Programs at this Campus:

Foundation Visual Art & Design

Sound Design for Visual Media

Programs at this Campus:

Digital Design

Foundation Visual Art & Design

VR/AR Design & Development

Programs at this Campus:

3D Animation & Visual Effects

Animation Concept Art

Classical Animation

Foundation Visual Art & Design

Programs at this Campus:

Film Production

Programs at this Campus:

Game Design

Programming for Games, Web & Mobile

Programs at this Campus:

Makeup Design for Film & Television

Contact Information


You can reach us in Vancouver if you need answers to your questions or help with your enrollment.

Phone: 604.685.5808
Toll-free in North America: 1.800.661.4101
Fax: 604.685.5830

198 West Hastings St.
Vancouver, BC, Canada V6B 1H2

Contact Us


Visit the International Students' page to find contact information for our International Offices and local Admissions Advisors.


VFS works with industry, community, business, and education partners on many levels throughout the world. We seek to work with individuals and organizations that share our goal to equip students with the best education, and to position our graduates for success. If you believe collaborating with us can do this, we'd like to hear from you.

Industry Partners

Jon Bell


Community Partners

Vanessa Kliskey


To hire a VFS grad, contact:

Kathy Li


Latin America Partnerships and Articulations

Barbara Martínez Ruiz


Global Partnerships and Articulations

Scott Steiger


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