Derek Long


I am an Assistant Professor of Media and Cinema Studies in the College of Media at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. My research focuses on media distribution and the industrial history of global cinema and broadcasting.

My book project, Programs, Playdates, and Percentages: Film Distribution and the Making of the Hollywood Studio System, traces the history of feature film distribution from its origins in vaudeville, legitimate theater, and circuit Chautauqua through the transition to sound, showing how the major studios privileged distribution as the crucial instrument of the American film industry’s global reach.

I am also interested in applying digital humanities, and particularly the analysis of large-scale quantitative and qualitative data sets, to industrial questions of media history. See the research and digital work pages for descriptions of my current work.

My other research interests include digital production, animation history and aesthetics, avant-garde cinema, early cinema, B-films, and cult cinema.

Contact me at drlong AT