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Professor John Gibbs

  • Professor of Film
  • Research Dean for Heritage & Creativity
  • Academic Lead for Cine Valley (R&I)
  • Chair of Standing Committee for Senate on the Arts
  • Chair of Museums Partnership Reading


Areas of interest

My research is concerned with film aesthetics and especially with extending the methods and subjects of style-based criticism. This has included bringing together traditions of close analysis with on-set observation and production history in the exploration of a contemporary feature film, writing histories of mise-en-scène criticism, and exploring the possibilities of video essays for style-based criticism and for film history.  I am interested in filmmakers' choices and the consequences of those choices.

I was a Co-Investigator on Intermldia: Towards an Intermedial History of Brazilian Cinema, with a particular role in exploring relationships between Brazilian and Hollywood films, and have recently collaborated with Lúcia Nagib on An Amorous Discourse: Remapping the World Through Cinephilia.

I am academic Co-lead of the University’s Cine Valley project, working with Shinfield Studios and other partners, and am on the board of Screen Berkshire, the BFI-funded skills cluster of which University of Reading is a founding member. My role as Research Dean includes working with colleagues across different disciplines and with external partners including the Natural History Museum.


Postgraduate supervision

I welcome enquiries from prospective postgraduate students interested in working on a wide range of narrative film, on videographic criticism, on critical historiography, on film aesthetics, and on research in film and television by practice.

Current and recent projects supervised include studies of the films of Otto Preminger, production design in the new cinema of Pernambuco, and practice as research explorations of the long take, of editing, of ethics and rhetoric in docudrama, of women and home in the cinema and of different modes of film production.


Creative Geography, Creative Connections: Candyman from John Gibbs on Vimeo.


  • Introduction to Film and Theatre
  • Critical Practice in Film and Theatre  
  • Practical Option: Film and Television
  • Critical Issues in Film Style
  • Hollywood and Beyond 
  • Storytelling in Film
  • Screen Storytelling and Criticism
  • Videographic Criticism.

Professional bodies/affiliations

  • Series Editor (with Douglas Pye) of Palgrave Close Readings in Film and Television, Palgrave Macmillan
  • Member of Editorial Board of Movie: A Journal of Film Criticism
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • Founding board member of Screen Berkshire.


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