Studying animation
in France

Prépa Entertainment, CG Animation & FX - Master Degree,
Lyon, Montpellier, Nantes, Toulouse

Entertainment Prep, CG Animation & FX – Master Degree
Lyon, Montpellier, Nantes, Toulouse

Since its creation in 1993, ESMA offers a training in CG Animation & FX cycle, which has constantly evolved in contact with animation professionals who accompany us every year. This training, equivalent to a frecnh Bac + 5 level (RNCP level 7), now enjoys international recognition from the professional world, and support from the biggest names in animation. Discover this course proposed on our Montpellier, Toulouse, Nantes and Lyon institutions.

The English version of the training is delivered on the Lyon and Montpellier campuses.


ESMA ranked 5th best animation school in the world (Animation Career Review 2020)

A Preparatory year

Accessible after the Bac (or equivalent), this year of study allows students wishing to enter the professional cycle CG Animation & FX, to learn beforehand the mastery of drawing, and the beginnings of the animation. Focused on technical and artistic apprenticeships, this year aims to provide students with all the basics required to enter graduate studies in animation

A Preparatory year

Professionnal degree in CG Animation & FX

The professional CG animation & FX cycle gives in 4 years all theoretical knowledge and technical skills to become a CG animator, CG director or FX supervisor. This training professional artists, allows tomorrow’s creative start their careers in optimal conditions, integrating the largest animation studios or video games in the world.

The English version of the training is delivered on the Lyon and Montpellier campuses.

Professionnal degree in CG Animation & FX
affiche comme un ours ESMA

& After ?

At the end of the professional cycle CG Animation & FX, graduates can join animation studios, video game companies, CG communication agencies or even start freelance. Their training as a generalist within ESMA allows them to aspire to a wide range of activities, including as a 2D or CG animator, director, matt-painter, FX artist, character designer...

The other me

Promotion 2020

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Promotion 2020

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Promotion 2020

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Le Roi Tulipe

Promotion 2020 . coup de coeur

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Promotion 2019

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Promotion 2019 . coup de coeur

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Avec le Do de la Cuillère

Promotion 2019

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Une Lanterne dans la Nuit

Promotion 2019

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affiches the other me
Affiche Gladius ESMA
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Affiche le roi tulipe
affiches senses ESMA
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Affiche avec le do de la cuillère
Affiche une lanterne dans la nuit ESMA

ESMA has a very strong background in animation cinema and that’s really what we’re looking for. This allows us to have specialized students, very focused on their careers. Students are passionate and highly motivated by what they do.


Director of photography at Pixar Animation Studios

word of alumni

At school we were taught to develop our artistic vision and to acquire all the necessary technical knowledge to be able to evolve in the world of CG and FX. All these years at ESMA have really brought me a lot and if I had to do it again, I would do it again!

Rigging Supervisor, Illumination MacGuff
Promotion : 2010

Professional quote

We have recruited talented artists who have studied at ESMA in recent years. The curriculum they are following has allowed them to prepare well for our studios.

Dana RAAD 

Talent Acquisition Manager – The Focus


We had fel previous years that the level rising, but this year of 2015, there are many very beautiful movies, especially in all which is realistic.

Fédérico Costa
Artistic Supervisor, Delapost

professional quote

My training at ESMA provided me with the basics that allow me today to work in one of the best agencies in the world: Weta Digital!

Garrick Rawlingson
Animator, Weta Digital
Promotion : 2013 

professional quote

ESMA being a reference school, we are very attentive to the new talents that emerge each year.

Lionel FAGES 

Director & founder of Cube Creative studio


Professional quote

To be able to work in the world of video games, several qualities are necessary: being creative and autonomous, being proactive, having a good team spirit and knowing how to work with others but also being able to face new challenges. ESMA conveys all these values to its students.


Lead Animator at Ubisoft Annecy

Erik Smitt de Pixar, président d'honneur du jury ESMA 2019
Logo studio illumination macguff
Logo The Focus studio
Logo Weta Digital
Visite du studio Cube Creative à l'ESMA Montpellier
Logo Ubisoft Annecy

A Professional Vocation

With its professional cycle in CG Animation & FX, ESMA sets the level high in terms of ambition for its students. In 4 years, our educational teams will assist them in their acquisition of tools for the creation and development of their artistic and technical skills, necessary for the development of animation projects.

Accessible after the Hight-School Degree, this training is intended for those who are destined for animation, video games and creation, and who have already contributed to a certain artistic experience.
For the others, the ESMA proposes a preparatory year, the Prepa Entertainment, which brings all the bases necessary to integrate this professional cycle in CG Animation & FX.


Through the discovery of each step of the process of creation of an animation project (pre-production, production and post-production), the students will put their knowledge into practice and perfect them in a professionalization perspective. Storyboard, layout, character design, but also modeling, rigging, animation, lighting, rendering, special effects … The student is trained in each technique and each artistic practice, and can claim to integrate a project at each step of development .
Emphasis is also put on an increased practice of different creative software, whose students master all the tools of their training.

The professionalisation of our students being one of our main objectives, we make a point of honor to multiply the meeting times between students and professionals of the animation. Also, during their training in CG animation and FX at ESMA, our students benefit from numerous interventions and experience sharing, as part of masterclasses, conferences and other workshops.

The internship period at the end of the 2nd year also contributes to this professionalisation. It allows the skills acquired to be put into practice, under real professional conditions. It is also an opportunity for students to create their own network, and to think of their professional project in a more concrete way.

During their last year of study, students work on the development of an animated short film. For almost a year, the students will think of a project of animation, of its scripting to its visual and technical elaboration, putting together all the knowledge and the skills which they will have acquired within the framework of their formation. This graduation film is then presented before a jury of professionals, who gather every year to judge the quality of the projects, but also to meet the future creatives who will come to provide their teams.

At ESMA, we are proud of the insertion rates of our students: only 6 months after graduation in CG Animation & FX, our students have a placement rate of 93% (and 100% after 9 months!). The rigor of lessons offered at ESMA, the personalized pedagogical support but also the support of which the training benefits from the professionals of the animation, are some of the keys of this success!