Screen and Film Studies

Screen and Film Studies

Screen and Film Studies is a long-established research group in the Department of Communication and Media. The group's main areas of research are film and television studies, with the study of digital screens cutting across media sectors emerging as a third key area of expertise.

Film has been the main focal point for several members of this research group which boasts a comprehensive approach to the medium that makes it distinctive from other research groups in the field. Our interests range from studies of mainstream cinema to independent, cult, underground/avant-garde, documentary, animation and even virtual reality.

Members of the group focus primarily on American cinema though we also conduct work on other currents in cinema studies. As part of this work, staff have focused on questions around identity, stardom, performance, industry and technology, institutions, adaptation, youth representation and politics through methodological approaches that have favoured, among others, textual analysis, media industries and cultural studies methods as well as institutional analysis and archival research.

Television is the second key focal point in the group with researchers moving beyond the medium to consider questions about broadcasting processes and policies, thereby bridging work on content and institutions. Members of the group consider identity and performance, adaptation and representations of time and temporality, character growth and ageing. Other interests include, inter alia, television war reporting, and television texts and systems in authoritarian regimes, together with the intersection of cult television and class identity. Like the work in the film studies, research in this area also benefits from a variety of methodological approaches, ranging from institutional analysis to textual analysis and methods informed by cultural studies.

Finally, the rise of digital technology, and its impact on all media sectors, has been increasingly influencing the cluster's work with focus on such areas as masculinities and 'lad cultures'; the impact of digital technology on American independent cinema; Andy Warhol's films and their place in museums and galleries; stardom's relationship with new media platforms, and Hollywood's investment in Virtual Reality.

Key research areas include:

  • American cinema, ranging from mainstream Hollywood film to independent, underground, oppositional, avant-garde and non-fiction expressions of filmmaking
  • Broadcasting history, institutions and their programming, with particular emphasis on television documentary and current affairs programming
  • Science fiction, fantasy and 'cult' TV and film, with a strong interest in questions of performance, stardom and celebrity, and representations of ageing and time
  • Representation of queer histories, practices and cultures in film and television
  • Film and television industries, with a focus on the production, distribution and promotional strategies they employ and the ways in which technologies impact on them

Current members of the Screen and Film Studies research group include: