Film Studies

Film Studies research at Sussex

Our film studies researchers engage with global screen cultures and contexts, film history and contemporary cinema, and critical and theoretical approaches to audiovisual media. We have pioneered innovative methods of film analysis and critique, linking film to the digital in both our research and our practice, and we are also active in film production.

Key areas of interest include: documentary, comedy; gender, sexuality and the body; film industries, audiences and festivals; political cinema and activism; urban geographies of cinema; animals in film and media; digital technologies and cinema; film, philosophy and memory and seriality, adaptation and intermediality.

We produce monographs and collections, audiovisual forms of film studies, contribute to key international journals, engage in joint research projects with external partners, programme and curate film festivals and exhibitions, and contribute to international forums and conferences.

We work closely with colleagues in media and cultural studies and media practice. We have almost 90 doctoral students working across the entire range of our subjects. We also host postdoctoral and visiting researchers from across the world.

To find out more about doctoral research in our department please contact our Research Team We offer a number of funded places every year, including AHRC-funded doctoral scholarships.

You can also find out about other research strands: Cultural StudiesJournalism, Media and CommunicationsMedia Practice, and Music.

Dr Thomas Austin talks about his book, Cinema of Crisis: Film and Contemporary Europe.


Dr Michael Lawrence discusses the relationship between global humanitarianism and media culture, and in particular the transformation of humanitarian media in the digital era.


Professor Alisa Lebow introduces her collaborative manifesto, Beyond Story, on the politics of documentary filmmaking. The manifesto can be found here.


These films were produced in collaboration with REFRAME, the School’s open-access, multimedia digital publishing platform.

Find out more about REFRAME

Thomas' faculty perspective

'You will benefit from teaching from top-quality cutting-edge researchers, which is reflected in the course design. We push our students to develop their talents, potential, skills and depths.'

Dr Thomas Austin 
Reader in Media and Film Studies