Movies from Marlboro Spring 2016

Are you ready to make a dramatic feature film? The Movies from Marlboro program offers the unique opportunity for students from Marlboro or any other college to gain both college credit AND professional film credit. Organized as the equivalent to a semester abroad, Movies from Marlboro combines the best of liberal arts education, professional preparation, and cultural immersion. Applications for our fall 2015 low-residency screenwriting and casting courses, and the spring 2016 full semester program will be available in early January 2015. 

Program Overview

During this innovative hands-on film practicum, a team of college students and professionals will produce a feature film using professional actors, working under a Screen Actors Guild contract. Our first Movies from Marlboro production, Northern Borders (filmed during winter/spring 2012) starred Academy Award nominated actors Bruce Dern and Geneviève Bujold, along with Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick (Moonrise Kingdom, The Omen) and 2010 Tony nominee Jessica Hecht (Sideways). Northern Borders has played 103 towns (and counting) and negotiations are taking place now for broader distribution. Our second Movies from Marlboro film, Peter and John, based on the 19th seaside story by Guy de Maupassant, was filmed on location in Nantucket in March, April and May 2014. Peter and John stars 2014 Golden Globe winner Jacqueline Bisset (Bullitt, Truffaut’s Day for Night, Chabrol’s Le Ceremonie), Christian Coulson (Harry Potter, Chamber of Secrets, The Hours), Shane Patrick Kearns (Blue Collar Boys), Diane Guerrero (Orange is the New Black) and Emmy winner and Tony nominee Gordon Clapp (NYPD Blue, Matewan, Glengarry Glen Ross). It will premiere in Nantucket in June 2015.

For the first time, in the fall of 2015, Marlboro College will offer a Movies from Marlboro low-residency opportunity that will provide students enrolled at other colleges a chance to participate in a 4-credit course of feature-length script development, associated film and literature study, casting, and student script writing for short films that will be produced during the 2016 intensive. Students will also visit the Montreal World Film Festival and participate in a New York casting session. Participating students will gain experience and exposure in script writing, both on their own screenplays and the feature film script being developed for the 2016 film intensive. Students will also write critical responses to films related thematically to the 2016 project—and they will participate directly in planning, organizing, and reviewing the first auditions and casting work for the planned MfM film.

The next semester-long program will take place in spring 2016. Students will convene at Marlboro College (in southeastern Vermont) mid-January, followed immediately by an expedition to the Sundance Film Festival. Back at Marlboro, seven weeks of study, training, and pre-production work on the Vermont campus will be followed by seven weeks of pre-production and production on location (TBA) that will fully immerse students in the culture and practice of an ambitious film shoot. Filming and coursework wraps by May.

Visit the courses page for more information about college credit and the filmmaking team page for more information about student roles on set.

Ready to learn even more? Visit the Application Process, Schedule, Costs and Financial Aid page.

Questions? Contact film director and professor Jay Craven.



The Movies from Marlboro program is open to any current college undergraduate with a serious interest in independent feature filmmaking. We are particularly seeking students majoring in film production, film studies, theater, photography, studio arts, fashion design, marketing and communications. Apply now!

Recent college graduates and film professionals, click here for information about opportunities for participation.

“This has been without a doubt the most unique educational experience of my life. Once we started shooting, it was completely different from any normal college class. Instead of reading, writing, and talking, everyone was doing things. Instead of talking about films, we got to make one. I was surprised by the quality of the professionals, the quality of the equipment, and the seriousness and scale of the whole project.” - Zebuolon Goertzel '14, Marlboro College

The Story

Pierre et Jean is widely credited for changing the course of narrative fiction. The book introduced intense psychological complexity into its naturalistic depiction of a family brought to the breaking point through startling revelations. The film will be set during the mid-1800's, just before the start of Nantucket’s “ghost period”—after the demise of the whaling industry and before the rise of tourism.

Peter and John tells the story of Peter Roland, a sensitive and sober but unstable town doctor in his early 30s. Peter takes pleasure from a cozy and affectionate relationship with his strikingly beautiful mother, Julia, and he enjoys a playful camaraderie with his mischievous and sometimes reckless younger brother John. One night at dinner, a courier arrives with news of a surprising small inheritance for Peter and a much larger one for John. Immediately, Peter darkens, suspecting that John’s benefactor, a bachelor aristocrat and family friend, had carried on an affair with his mother and was, in fact, John’s true father. Burdened by his suspicions, Peter can’t find the words or feelings to resolve his fears. He finds himself unexpectedly drawn towards a young woman who arrives on the island, but his brother John also finds her attractive. The young doctor becomes increasingly unsure of himself, descending into a fog as thick as the rolling mist that regularly engulfs his seaside home. What emerges is less a tale of jealousy than a series of cathartic realizations prompted by Peter’s crisis, forcing him to confront what former Brandeis University French literature professor Murray Sachs described as Peter’s furtive reckoning with “the hollowness and immaturity of the illusions by which he lived.”

Maupassant’s novel was widely heralded by critics and writers. “Monsieur de Maupassant has never before been so clever,” wrote Henry James who called Pierre et Jean a “masterly little novel.” It is a complex and relevant tale of family, class, legacy, legitimacy, and self-discovery.