- University of Southern California, Bachelor of Arts
University of California, Los Angeles, Master of Fine Arts
University of Southern California, Ph.D.
Leah received her PhD from USC School of Cinema and Media Studies with interests in: Representation, Race, Gender and Genre; Culture Industry, Distribution and Circulation; Diaspora, Globalization and Cultural Exchange; and Documentary, Independent, and Experimental Forms and Circuits. Leah's main research is in the relationship between international distribution and domestic production of black film and television and has published on the brands of cinematic blackness. She has a BA (English) from USC and an MFA (Screenwriting) from UCLA.
Scholarly Work and Publications
Will Smith: A Global Brand of Blackness, in The Myth of Colorblindness: Race and Ethnicity in American Cinema, Turner, Sarah, E., and Nilsen, Sarah, eds., Palgrave Macmillan, Nov. 2019
To Brand and Rebrand: Questioning the Futurity of Tyler Perry, in From Madea to Media Mogul: Theorizing Tyler Perry, Russworm, TreaAndrea, et al, eds., Univ. Press of Mississippi, 2016
Mythology and Affect: The Brands of Cinematic Blackness of Will Smith and Tyler Perry, Spectator 31:1 (Spring 2011), University of Southern California, pp 41-47
Some Like it Hot: Film Analysis, Introduction to Film Reader, Casper, Drew, and Edwards, Richard, McGraw Hill Education, 2018
Curator's Note: Cultural Production of Black Panther Behind the Scenes, in media res: a media commons project, [online] 2018
Book Review: "Double Negative: The Black Image in Popular Culture," by Raquel Gates, Duke University Press, Film Quarterly, Vol.72 No. 4, Summer 2019
Book Review: "The Writers: A History of American Screenwriters and Their Guild," by Miranda Banks, Rutgers University Press, Film Criticism, Winter, 2017
Teaching and Research Interests
Black cinema (e.g., US, history, etc.)
Industry practices (e.g., distribution, marketing, casting, production cycles, etc.)
Storytelling and screenwriting