The Underground Academy of Cinematic Arts is an arts/education 501(c)3 that is committed to helping students discover their stories through film/media/broadcast, providing teens with educational programming, competition, award recognition, teen experiences, and a sense of community.

Our Programming

  • Cinematic Arts School. The Underground Academy of Cinematic Arts offers semester courses in Film, Television, and Film Studies. Students in high school and/or between the ages of 15-19 are eligible to register for classes. Students who come through the program can apply for flexible art credit through the State of Ohio. The Underground is currently pursuing college credit with partnering universities.
  • Educational Programming. Throughout the year, The Underground provides local, day-long workshops, week-long summer camps, and after school enrichment programs to deepen students’ knowledge in the cinematic arts.
  • Recognition. At the end of April, The Underground produces the annual Golden Lion Awards High School Film Festival for students living in the 12 Midwest states or areas within 500 miles of Cincinnati.
  • Competition. Every August, The Underground produces the Teen Film Challenge (TFC), a film experience where students compete to produce a short narrative film in 72 hours. Students receive a film title/genre at the kick-off event, and all films are screened at the Film Premiere/Awards Ceremony.
  • Teen Experiences/Social Outings. Throughout the year, The Underground offers social experiences where teens can explore their cinematic art interests through a monthly “Directors’ Series”, “Countdown to Oscars” socials, and local/out-of-state film festival trips.