Student Snapshot – Diego Rocha

Diego Rocha
MFA Class of 2024

Introduce yourself briefly and tell me a little bit about your background. Are you an MFA or BFA?
I’m Diego Rocha, 37 years old, an MFA student in the Production program. I was born in Brazil but spent many years in Massachusetts. I have a background in education and theater, and to be at FSU is a dream come true. I never imagined that I’d be this fortunate to be accepted into such a wonderful program. This opportunity is beyond ANYTHING I ever dreamed of. I love languages, traveling, and world cinema.

Who is your favorite Filmmaker and What is your favorite movie?
My favorite filmmaker of all time is Pedro Almodóvar, and one of my favorite movies is Dunkirk, directed by Christopher Nolan.

What are you currently working on?
I am currently working on crew drills, getting ready to start shooting our D1s. I will be directing a film in which 2 young men are caught in the middle of a moral dilemma as Nazi Germany is on the rise.

What does your typical day look like?
I wake up 1:30 hours before my call time, take a nice long shower, have breakfast, pack my things and walk to campus. Once I’m there, I have multiple classes. The interaction with peers is a very big part of our experience at the school. I love the fact that I spend all day at the film school.

What has been the best part of film school so far?
Understanding film from the perspective of the crew. I’ve been on film sets before, but I never imagined myself performing the various duties and getting so much support from everyone. We have very long days, but I always have a smile on my face. I feel so valued within a crew. I understand that without my role and performance, regardless of what it is, the film cannot happen the way it was intended by the director.

Which faculty member has made the greatest impression on you and how?
Mark Vargo and Marisol Gomez have caused a tremendous impact on my perception of things. They are professional, reachable, and attentive to details. They’ve also given us priceless tips on how to be as astute as possible in our roles. I really learn so much from them!

What do you think someone applying to the program should know about the FSU Film School?
You are going to work really hard, and you have to give your very best at every position you fill. And your very best may not be 100% every day, but we can all feel the vibes of someone’s absolute best. Because in a way, things flow and everyone else adapts themselves to make sure that collectively we are at 100%. As much as the things we do can be very technical, they can also be very sensorial. It’s a great balance of physical, emotional and artistic labor!

Favorite Film School Moment?
Walking into the lobby for the first time, and understanding that I had arrived in a very special place. A place for those who live and breathe filmmaking all day long, all year long!

It’s late, you’re at the Film School working on something you need to finish before tomorrow: where are you and who are you with?
I’m usually in prep room 1, close to the printer, alongside my friend from China, Zi Wang.