Ben Wright

inema Studies Institute

Office: Room 317E, Innis College
Phone: 416-946-0970



Research and Teaching:

Benjamin Wright’s current research focuses on the history and critical study of production cultures, especially exploring the aesthetic, social, and technological effects of labor structures within the contemporary American film industry. In particular, he is interested in the production culture of contemporary film and television sound and music professionals in Los Angeles where the freelance structure of the post-production community, not unlike in other crafts in Hollywood production chain, has forced many practitioners to redefine their professional identities to better reflect their status as “artists” and “designers” of sound rather than technicians or engineers. He is currently completing work on two book projects that explore these areas of industry practice. In addition to his interest in production culture and sound aesthetics, Professor Wright maintains an interest in the history of Jewish humor in film and television, transmedia storytelling, and genre theory.

Professor Wright teaches Film Cultures I on the history of international cinema, American Cinema in the Studio Era, and advanced seminars on Film Sound and Contemporary Screen Comedy.


Select Publications:


“Footsteps with Character: The Art and Craft of Foley,” Screen 55.2 (Summer 2014): pp. 204-220.

“What do we hear? The Pluralism of Sound Design in Hollywood Sound Production,” The New Soundtrack 3.2 (Fall 2013): pp. 137-157.

“Canada’s Great Shame: Tax Shelters, Nationalism, and Popular Taste,” Spectator (Fall 2012): pp. 20-26.

“‘Why would you do that, Larry?’: Identity Formation and Humor in Curb Your Enthusiasm,”
The Journal of Popular Culture, Vol. 44, No. 3 (2011): pp. 660-677.



“The Auteur Renaissance, 1968-1980,” Behind the Silver Screen: Editing and Special Effects. Eds. Charlie Keil and Kristin Whissel. Rutgers University Press, forthcoming in 2015.

“Hans Zimmer and the New Sound of Hollywood.” The Routledge Reader on the Sociology of Music. Eds. John Shepherd and Kyle Devine. New York: Routledge, forthcoming in 2015.

“Atmos Now – Dolby Laboratories, Mixing Ideology, and Hollywood Sound Production,” Living Stereo: History, Culture, Multichannel Sound. Eds. Paul Théberge, Kyle Devine, and Thom Everett. New York: Bloomsbury Press, forthcoming in 2015.

“Mapping Film Audiences in Multicultural Canada: Examples from the Cybercartographic Atlas of Canadian Cinema,” co-written with Sébastien Caquard and Daniel Naud, Locating the Moving Image. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2013: pp. 130-149



“Woody Allen’s Jewish Identity Crisis,” in The Take2 Guide to Woody Allen, ed. John Pruzanski (Take2 Digital Publishing, 2014).

“Sculptural Dissonance: Hans Zimmer and the Composer as Engineer,” Sounding Out! (Sound Studies Blog, July 2014).

“Above the Cut: An Interview with Django Unchained Editor Fred Raskin,” The House Next Door, Slant Magazine. January 2013.

“Favorite Moments of Film Sound: The Wilhelm Scream,” in Offscreen “Sound in the Cinema and Beyond,” Volume 11, Issue 8 (2007).