Old Media Studies



Film Information

Year: 2020

Genre: Short Narrative

Location: Saint Paul, MN

Runtime: 13


Cast & Crew

PRODUCER wheel•house
KEY CAST Clarence Wethern, Michael Milo Novak, Annalisa Monet


When a proposal for a New Media Studies major leaves him fearing for the future of the humanities, an English professor jokingly suggests creating an Old Media Studies program. But when his idea attracts the interest of a student who has every reason to turn her back on modern technology, he finds there is only one thing left to do.


Following the release of my debut novel, I found myself struggling to settle on a new story to tell. I'd wake up thinking of one novel, switch to working on another midday, then go to sleep imagining a third. One of these projects was Old Media Studies, which grew out of my experiences as an English professor. The number of new humanities majors is down sharply since the time of my own undergraduate education, and why is that? New technology has arrived to reshape the way we live. It's increasingly rare for a student to read without distraction. It got me thinking that a true English major, one that could really teach its students something new, would be a lot like a cult, demanding that you give up certain things (your phone and your internet connection, for example) so that you could receive a deeper level of concentration in return. It's an absurd scenario, of course, but those are the types of ideas that I gravitate to as a writer, so I set out to find a way I could bring this type of academic program into existence. The short film, though self-contained, serves as a kind of first chapter to the book, or the opening of the movie, laying the groundwork for what comes next.