CRITICISM

I've been writing  critical nonfiction—primarily film criticism but occasionally touching on politics and other topicssince 2002. I began writing for Filmmaker magazine in 2011, a print and digital magazine published by the Independent Filmmaker Project in Brooklyn that, with a print readership of over 60,000, is one of the most widely read publications in the independent film world. My writing covers a variety of topics but emphasizes animation, emerging platforms like VR, AR, and transmedia, social issue and environmental documentaries, and postproduction, with numerous articles both in print and online. Some subjects I've covered for the print magazine include postproduction for interactive films, the finances and logistics of releasing a film through online VOD distribution platforms, data visualization and graphic design in documentaries, and how universities and film schools are adapting to teach virtual reality production.

With a background in Mormonism, over the past two decades I have also helped establish the field of Mormon film studies. In 2018 I published the book Mormon Cinema: Origins to 1952 (Mormon Arts Center, 666 pages), an academic history that analyzes how events in nineteenth-century Mormon art and society helped shape early Mormon film, followed by a history of Mormons working in the film industry, mainstream depictions of Mormons on film, and movies produced by the institutional church throughout the first half of the twentieth-century, including events from the invention of television to the composition of "When You Wish Upon a Star." I've also published or presented over thirty articles on Mormonism and cinema, including in Mormons and Popular Culture (Praeger, 2012) and this presentation at Columbia University in 2018, taught Mormon film at the university level, edited peer-reviewed and literary journals on Mormon film, and programmed films like Transmormon, a documentary about a transgender Mormon woman, for the Sunstone Summer Symposium at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. 

From 2008 to 2013 I blogged about children's media—primarily television, movies, music, literature, theater, and toysat a blog called Red Balloon, after Albert Lamorisse's 1956 film. My emphasis was on news for parents and professionals in the children's entertainment industries, but I often stretched into longer reviews and analyses, such as a post about the relationship between The Legend of Korra, Mao Zedong, the Boxer Rebellion, and classic martial arts films. 

I've also edited and copyedited written work such as academic articles, Ph.D. dissertations, personal memoirs, and feature screenplays.