Second City Launches the Harold Ramis Film School

The Second City Opens the Harold
Sebastien Bossi/REX/Shutterstock

Comedy brand name the Second City has announced what it’s billing as the world’s first film school dedicated to comedy, which it has dubbed the Harold Ramis Film School.

The late Second City alumnus Ramis is most known for his roles in “Ghostbusters” and “Stripes,” directing “Caddyshack” and writing the screenplay for “Animal House” and “Groundhog Day.” Second City’s new Chicago-based school plans to build on Ramis’ legacy as a writer, director, producer and performer, while utilizing Second City’s comedy approach to teach improv and content creation.

“Harold Ramis was the quintessential Second City writer-performer — intelligent, funny and devoted to the spirit of ensemble,” said Andrew Alexander, CEO and executive producer of Second City. “His early mentoring of the Second City TV cast set the template for how that show would operate for eight seasons. His unselfish and generous spirit dominated the many wonderful films that he directed and wrote. I am thrilled by this opportunity to instill Harold’s philosophy of successful storytelling in film in the next generation of artists.”

Students will be immersed in comedy training, film history, storytelling and film production classes. At the end of the one-year program, a graduate will leave with produced content of some form.

“This school honors the memory of Harold and his legacy of identifying, mentoring and developing new talent,” says Erica Mann Ramis, widow of Harold. “I am very proud and grateful that the Second City has chosen to pay this enormous tribute to my husband and his work.”

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