Our Philosophy

Filmmaking is fun and we firmly believe that classes about filmmaking should be fun as well.

No lectures here - the best way to learn is by doing. All of our classes are limited to 10 or 12 students and everyone is encouraged to "get their hands dirty". Screenwriters will write, actors will act, and filmmakers will shoot films using our equipment.

We love filmmaking and are eager to help you learn the craft while you bring your own film dreams to life.

Our People
Chris MessineoChris Messineo
Director ~ NJ Film School

Chris Messineo is an award-winning writer and director.

As the owner and director of NJ Film School, he has taught the craft of independent filmmaking to hundreds of kids, teens, and adults - who have gone on to win their own awards for writing and directing.

He has worked as a director, screenwriter, cinematographer, editor, script reader, screenplay consultant, and even a film festival judge.

He is the founder of Off Stage Films, an independent production company. Their films have played at festivals around the world and been recognized for screenwriting, acting, sound, cinematography, editing, score, and directing.

In 1998, he formed the NJ Screenwriter's Group and since then, they have held hundreds of original screenplay readings. In 2002, he created MoviePoet.com, a free online contest and forum to celebrate the art of short scripts and help bring screenwriters and filmmakers together resulting in the production of over 300 films.

Chris is passionate about filmmaking, teaching, and frequently lectures on Hitchcock, Film Noir, Chaplin and Keaton, and much more. He lives in New Providence with his wife and daughter.

Elizabeth MessineoElizabeth Messineo
Manager ~ NJ Film School

Elizabeth Messineo, some call her "Mrs. Film School", works behind the scenes keeping the books and managing the business.

Liz has been many things at many times. Using her degree from Susquehanna University in Theatre Arts, she has performed on stage throughout Northern New Jersey for the past twenty five years. Additionally, she has directed numerous children productions for theaters and school groups. She has worked a variety of film crew positions for Off Stage Films and others.

Using the left side of her brain, she has been an accountant for several corporations throughout New Jersey, as well as an editor and proofreader for local businesses.

When not at the film school, Liz can be found watching movies with her husband, daughter, dog, and cat.

Daryn DavidsonDaryn Davidson
Instructor ~ NJ Film School

Daryn Davidson is a filmmaker and editor who has been working professionally since 2014.

She has done freelance video editing for YouTube Channel documentaries, event promotions, and historical society videos.

She is a graduate of the Mandarin House Language School in Beijing, China and RRF Connection with a Bachelors in Film Engineering. She is also an alumni of NJ Film School.

She has lived in multiple states in the USA and for five years in Beijing, China and Basel, Switzerland. She has also traveled extensively in Europe and Asia.

Daryn is an award-winning filmmaker and her films have played at festivals around the world. She is a movie lover and lives in Ringoes.

Chris FurlongChris Furlong
Instructor ~ NJ Film School

Chris Furlong believes that "Life is an Improv."

He has been affiliated with the Chatham Playhouse in Chatham, NJ for over 25 years. He has done it all from performing, designing/building sets, sound design, casting, and painting. He has also served on the theater's Board of Trustees as President, Vice President and Business Manager.

For over 10 years, he taught drama and improvisation at an overnight summer camp in North Jersey. Chris worked for the S.P.A.T.T. program of Chatham by teaching theater to students ranging from Kindergarten to 6th grade. Locally, he has directed High School plays.

Chris has produced numerous films for Off Stage Films and assisted with production responsibilities on corporate videos. He lives in Morris Plains with his cat, Mocha.

Mark MendittoMark Menditto
Instructor ~ NJ Film School

Mark Menditto is a freelance photographer and cinematographer in New Jersey.

His still photography work has been on exhibition at Soho Photo Gallery (New York), Visions Gallery and the Swerdlow Gallery (New Jersey), and as stock photography through PhotoShelter, iStockphoto and the Auroraphoto stock agencies. Mark's work has appeared in Bark Magazine and ASMP Bulletin.

His cinematographic work (IMDB) includes Facade, Test Subject, Undercover, and The Water's Edge. Mark is a member of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) and one of their Best of 2009 photographers.

Mark and his lovely wife live in New Jersey and watch their rescued greyhound "Tessie" romp around their yard in between photo and film shoots. His website is www.MendittoPhoto.com.

Our Studio and Gear

We are located in New Providence, New Jersey (minutes from Routes 22, 24, 78, and the Short Hills Mall). Our 3,700 square foot studio is handicapped accessible and provides plenty of room for both instruction and production.

755 Central Avenue, New Providence, NJ 07974

We are fully loaded with all the equipment needed for independent filmmaking:

Cameras and Lenses:
  • Blackmagic Ursa Mini 4.6K w/ Shoulder Mount & Viewfinder
  • 2 Panasonic HPX170 Digital Cameras
  • DJI Phantom 3 Professional Drone
  • Canon T6i DSLR
  • Rokinon Cine DS Lenses: 14, 24, 35, 50, 85, 100, & 135mm
  • Canon 18-55mm Zoom Lens
  • Lensbaby Composer Pro, Macro, and Optic Kit
  • 52mm and 77mm Reverse Ring Adapters
  • Chrosziel Matte Box
  • Schneider Filters: Polarizer, True/Blue Streak, & .6/.9 ND
  • Cavision Hot Mirror Glass Filter
  • Fotasy Follow Focus
  • Cinetech Follow Focus
  • LensShifter Focus and Zoom Puller
  • Zacuto Universal Baseplate and Zwiss Plate
  • Cavision Support Rods System

  • ViewZ VZ-215LED-SN 21.5" Video Monitor
  • Sony LMD-2110 21.5" Video Monitor
  • Small HD DP4 and EVF Video Monitor

Tripod and Mounts:
Grip Cart:
  • Slate
  • Cinefoil
  • Apple Boxes
  • Milk Crates
  • Rolling Grip Box
  • Pelican Cases
  • Gaffer's Tape (Black, Green, and White), Duct Tape, and Painter's Tape
  • 12 Colored "T" Marks
  • Telescoping Hangers (Trombones)
  • Clamps (C, Mafer, Cardellini, Pony 3202, & C47)
  • Makeup Kit (Brushes, Ben Nye Bruise Wheel, etc.)
  • Hawgfly Blood
  • Atmosphere Aerosol Haze
  • Mini Fogger Smoke Machine
  • Costumes (hats, masks, etc.)
  • Props (lightsabers, wands, rayguns, etc.)
  • Spork
  • and Much More
  • Zoom H4n Portable Digital Recorder
  • Sony MDR-7506 Production Headphones
  • 3 Sennheiser HD 280 Headphones
  • Sennheiser G3 Wireless Microphones
  • Sennheiser G2 Wireless Microphones
  • Sennheiser MKH416 Shotgun Microphone
  • Sennheiser Pistol Grip, Windsock, and Windscreen
  • Oktava MK012 Omni, Cardiod, and Hypercardiod Microphone
  • Oktava Shockmount, Windscreen, and Headphone Hanger
  • Rode NTG4+ Shotgun Microphone
  • Rode VideoMic Go - Shotgun Microphone
  • Rode Pro Boom Pole
  • Rode Pistol Grip
  • Rode WS6 Deluxe Windscreen
  • Carbon Fiber Boom Pole
  • Matthews Boom Pole Grip
  • Boom Boy Boom Pole Grip
  • Professional Sound DV ProMix 3 - Field Mixer
  • XLR Cables (various lengths)

Editing and Post Production: