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Professor Stella Bruzzi FBA

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Professor of Film & Television Studies

Email: S dot Bruzzi at warwick dot ac dot uk
Room A1.19
Millburn House
University of Warwick
Coventry, CV4 7HS


Stella Bruzzi holds a BA from the University of Manchester in English and Drama, graduating in 1985 with a double First. After teaching at Manchester part-time, she went to Bristol in 1986 for her PhD ('Trial and Error: The Political Use of Trials in Film, Theatre and Television'). Stella interrupted her postgraduate research to take up a job as a Researcher at the BBC, first in Bristol (Documentary Features) then in London (Music and Arts), and was awarded her PhD in 1993. Prior to Warwick she held full-time teaching posts at the University of Manchester (1992—1993) and Royal Holloway, University of London (1993—2006) where she was one of the founding members of the Department of Media Arts. Stella came to the Department of Film & Television Studies at Warwick in 2006 as Head of Department. From 2008—2011 she was Chair of the Faculty of Arts. She is currently Director of Research for Film and Television Studies.

Research interests

The majority of my research is focused in the areas of: documentary film and television; costume, fashion and film; masculinity and cinema; fathers in film. In 2011 I was awarded a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship, the title of which is ‘Approximation: Documentary, History and Staging Reality’. I am currently writing the monograph linked to that project, and much of my teaching at the moment emantes from it. New Documentary was recently translated into Chinese and portions of this and other publications have been translated into German, Spanish and Italian.

More details of my Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship can be found at:

Recent International research activities

October 2014 I was invited to Piet Zwart Institute (Art MA programme), Rotterdam to give a 3-hour class on 'Approximation' and engage in a series of fascinating 1:1 discussions with postgraduates about their practice work.

November 2014 I was a Keynote speaker at the International Workshop 'Taking the Pulse of Our Times: Media, Therapy and Emotions', University of Navarre, Pamplona (proceeds just published by Palgrave Macmillan, including my chapter "Re-enacitng Trauma in Film and Television: Restaging History, Revisiting Pain"): Therapy and Emotions in Film and Teievision. An interview I gave there is available at: youtube.

February 2015 I was at Chapman University, California speaking at 'Interstices: The In-betweenness of Ethics': Interstices. See my recent blog about this: Interstices approximation blog.

April 2015 I was visiting professor at Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic. I lectured and held seminars on all my major research areas: documentary and site-specific re-enactment; oblique representations of 9/11; men's cinema; Italian American fathers in Hollywood; Jackie Kennedy's pink suit.

October 2015 I gave the Keynote address at Film Costume: Rendering Realities, NYU Oct. 17.

November 2015 I was invited to take part in the symposium "Exploring the Intersections of Fashion and Film Studies" alongside Deborah Nadoolman Landis, Ian Christie and others.

April 2016 I was invited to the Doha Film Institute, Qatar to co-curate and introduce a short season of costume films. I also delivered a public lecture on the subject.

June 2016 I returned to the University of Navarre for a conference on documentary film and screen cultures.

November 2016 I delivered a keynote lecture at the XXII International Conference of Film Studies, Roma Tre University.

My next talk about Jackie Kennedy's Pink Suit is: at the University of York (2 May 2017)

Selected publications

  • Undressing Cinema: Clothing and Identity in the Movies (Routledge, 1997)
  • New Documentary: A Critical Introduction (Routledge, 2000)
  • Fashion Cultures: Theories, Exploration and Analysis (co-edited with Pamela Church Gibson, Routledge, 2000)
  • Bringing Up Daddy: Fatherhood and Masculinity in Post-war Hollywood (BFI Publishing, 2005)
  • New Documentary (revised edition, Routledge, 2006)
  • Seven Up (BFI Publishing, 2006)
  • Men’s Cinema: Masculinity and Mise-en-Scene in Hollywood (Edinburgh University Press, 2013)
  • Fashion Cultures Revisited (co-edited with Pamela Church Gibson , Routledge, 2013)
  • Approximation: Documentary, History and the Staging of Reality is forthcoming (with Routledge, 2016/7)

Teaching and supervision

2016-2017 I have taught a third year option on Re-enactment and Documentary, and I convened and co-taught the MA Film and Television Studies Core Course. Spring Term 2017 I am on Research Leave.

I have supervised numerous PhDs to completion, including most recently a project on documentary in Chile since Pinochet, infidelity in the films of Eric Rohmer and Francois Truffaut and portrayals of the US president in film and television. Current students are looking at representations of torture in recent US and Chilean cinema and performance in 21st century British television documentary. I welcome applications for PhD study in many areas, especially related to documentary, gender and costume.


  • Director of Research for the Department of Film and Television Studies
  • Chair of Arts Collection Committee, University of Warwick
  • Member of Academic Staff Committee (promotions)

Alumni news

News of my former PhD students includes:

Dr Elizabeth Ramirez (2009-2013), is currently a government-funded postdoctoral fellow at the University of Valparaiso, Chile, recently learnt that she was runner-up in the AHGBI-Spanish Embassy Postgraduate Publication Prize for 2014. With an award of £500 towards publication, the book of her thesis on documentary in Chile post-Pinochet will be published by either Tamesis or Legenda press. She will become Assistant Professor in Cinema Studies at San Francisco State University in September 2017.

Dr Rick Wallace-Thompson (2008-2011) has been appointed Assistant Lecturer in the Department of Film and Television Studies, Warwick. He is currently a postdoc in the department and will take up his new position in September 2017.

Dr Claire Jenkins (2006-2010), currently Lecturer at Leicester University, is launched her monograph Home Movies: The American Family in Contemporary Hollywood on 16 April, 2015 at the BAFTSS conference in Manchester (BAFTSS 2015).

Dr Greg Frame (2008-2011), was runner-up in Peter Lang's 2013 postgraduate publication prize and further details of the book of his thesis, on representations of the US presidency in film and television, can be accessed here: The American President in Film and Television. He is now Lecturer in Film and Television at Bangor University.

National roles and professional associations

  • Fellow of the British Academy
  • Member of BAFTSS
  • Member of NECS
  • Editorial and Advisory Board member of Studies in Documentary, Film Fashion and Consumption, Critical Studies in Men’s Fashion, Alphaville and the BFI TV Classics series.
  • I have been part of a panel of "Stakeholders" engaged in revising and re-drafting A Level Film Studies at the behest of the Department of Education.