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Gabriel Paletz

Associate Lecturer
School of Media & IT

Gabriel is a lecturer for the Creative Media Production programme and teaches Storytelling for emerging platforms.

He is an experienced film scholar, programmer, critic, consultant, writer and teacher and earned the first PhD in film history with a minor in film production from the University of Southern California.

While mentoring screenwriting students across five continents, he has published film criticism in Variety, curated a retrospective with nine Eastern European Film archives. With zest for work across the arts, he has just finished a book that gives a new coherence to and appreciation of the career of the great 20th artist of multi-media career of Orson Welles.


Yale University (B.A), Humanities

University of Southern California (MA and PhD), Ph.D. Film Critical Studies/Production

First doctorate with a minor in film production. Dissertation: “‘Ripeness Is All’: Orson Welles and the Cultural Moment”

Professional Activities

2021-2023 - Prague City University - Lecturer
2005-2023 - Senior Faculty, Prague Film School, Prague

Original Production Seminars: Introductory
and Advanced Screenwriting Adaptations into Media, Documentary and Fiction Practicum, Documentary Film,
Writing Film Comedy, Learning from Bad Films, Film History for Filmmakers (undergraduate/graduate). 

2002-2003 - Visiting Assistant Professor, College of William and Mary, American Studies Program. Lecture: American Film
History (ug). Seminars: The Media of Orson Welles, Film History for Filmmakers (ug), Slapstick and the Avant-garde
(ug/gr). Tutorial in Film Theory (gr)


Semester and Summer Courses 

2012 - Adjunct Professor, FAMU International (Czech National Film School). Seminar in Film Comedy.
2012 - Adjunct Professor, Anglo-American University, Prague, Czech Republic. Seminar in Documentary Film
2012-2013 - Instructor, Duke University Summer Session. Seminars: American Film, Comedy, American Film
Genres, Introduction to Documentary and Introduction to Film History
2009 - Hollins University Film Studies Program. Seminars: Film Analysis and Research, American Film Comedy
Other Teaching 
2020 - Weekly Children’s Film Screenings for students aged 6-10 from the International School of Prague.
Presentation of classic to contemporary movies with children’s activities based on the films. 



Scholarly Publications

Peer-Reviewed Essays 

“To Make a Memorable Practitioner: The Lessons of Professor Welles,” Journal of Media Practice 12:1 (2011), 77-88 (review-essay of Orson Welles at Work).

“Orson Welles, Auteur of the Thriller,” New Review of Film and Television Studies 4:3 (Dec. 2006): 217-240. 

“The Finesse of the Film Lab: A Report from a Week at Haghefilm,” The Moving Image (Association of Moving Image Archivists Journal) 6:1 (Fall 2006): 1-32. 

“Before It Crystallizes: Orson Welles’s Career in Television,” Cinémathèque 22 (magazine of the Cinémathèque Française, in English and French, April 2003): 65-78. 

“Archives and Archivists Remade: The Paper Print Collection and The Film of Her,” The Moving Image 1:1 (Spring 2001): 69-95.

“Mike Leigh's ‘Naked’ Truth,” with David L. Paletz, Film Criticism 19:2 (Winter 1994- 1995): 23-29.


Short Essays, Articles, Reviews, Interviews, Translations, etc. (selected) 

“Documentary vs. the Provincial: Marcel Ophuls at the 2017 Jihlava Documentary Film Festival.” Documentary online: 6 Dec. 2017. 

“German Concentration Camps Factual Survey Uncovered: Harrowing, Vital Discoveries.&quot; POV Magazine 100 (Winter 2015): 44-45.

“21st Century Pioneers of Preservation.” Anthology of Lithuanian Documentary Cinema. Essay in bilingual DVD of first restored Baltic films. Meno avilys, 2014: 4-5.

“Cabinets of Wonder: On Creating and Collecting,” by Jan Švankmajer. The Moving Image 11:2 (Fall 2011):103-105. Translated from the Czech with Ondřej Kalál. 

“Stanley Kubrick: The Filmmaker and the Archivist,” (review essay of The Stanley Kubrick Archives and the director’s career), The Moving Image 7.1 (Spring 2007): 103-107. 

“Kafka Goes to the Movies,” (review essay of the book and film), Political Communication 22 (Spring 2005): 129-132. 

“The Lives of Lola Montès: A Report from the `Max Ophüls Beyond Borders’ Conference,” The Moving Image 4:1 (Spring 2004): 165-168. 

“The Halfway House of Memory: An Interview with Hirokazu Kore-eda,” CineAction 60 (Special Issue on East Asian Cinema, February 2003): 52-59. 

“Vertigo: The Making of a Hitchcock Classic,” Film Quarterly 55:1 (Fall 2001): 68- 69. 


Scholarly and Creative Writing Awards 

2018 - “Anniversaries of Alternative Eights: An Impossibly Optimistic Chronology of Czech and European History.” A comic chronology of Czech history, written for the centenary celebration of the Czech Republic. 2nd prize, 2018 Writing Competition, British Czech and Slovak Association (£150 GBP). 3 

2013 - “Running Away with a Revizor.” British Czech and Slovak Review April/May 2013: 6-7, about the changes to public transportation following the Velvet Revolution. 2 nd prize, BCSA Writing Competition (£100 GBP)

2004 - “The Finesse of the Film Lab” (see peer reviewed essays). Co-Winner, 1 st Annual Student Essay Award, Domitor (Society for the Study of Silent Cinema). (Prize a $200 book on pre-cinematic inventions). 


Scholarly Presentations (Conference Panels and Papers): 

May 2019 - “Creators of the Photoplay: The Great Women Screenwriters of Hollywood Silent Films” (Roundtable Chair and Presenter).

Presentation of research for program at Le Giornate del Cinema Muto.

Women and the Silent Screen Conference, Eye Institute, Amsterdam, Netherlands. 

March 2015 - “A Paragon of Intermedial Adaptation: The War of the Worlds in Radio, Film and Social Media” (Panel Co-Chair).

“Book to Broadcast and Across Media: Orson Welles’s Strategies of Adaptation” (paper).

Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, Montreal, Canada.

Oct. 2014 - “The Overlooked Screenwriter Orson Welles” (paper). Screenwriting Research Network International Conference, Potsdam, Germany. 

June 2013 - “The Politics of Memory: Representatives of the 1930s-40s Cultural Moment” (Panel Organizer and Presenter).

“Auteur of Memories: The Renaissance of Orson Welles” (paper). NECS (European Network for Cinema and Media Studies) Conference, Prague, Czech Republic. 



July 2016 “Creating a Classic Climax: Lessons from the Ending of Citizen Kane.” Presented at The American University of Rome, Italy and the ‘Cinema Camp’ of Meno Avilys (Arts Hive) at a manor house in Gelgaudiškis, Lithuania. 

May 2015 “From Charles Foster Kane to First Among Fakers: The Reinvention of Orson Welles.” Centennial Lecture for Welles program, Ponrepo Cinema, Prague, Czech Republic. 

Sep. 2013 “A Vital Cinema: Orson Welles and American Independent Film.” Lecture accompanying program of new American independent films shown at the Kaunas International Film Festival, Kaunas, Lithuania.

May 2013 “A Carolina Film Consultant in the Czech Republic.” On the filming of Serena (see film related activities). Regulator Bookshop, Durham, NC. 

April 2012 “Innovative Collaborations in German Silent Film.” FilmArche (Europe’s first organised film school), Berlin, Germany. 

Oct. 2011 “Four Aspects of Orson Welles.” Bookstore Word Order and The House of Cinema, St. Petersburg, Russia. Followed by interviews with local TV stations and The Voice of America in St. Petersburg. 

July 2008 “Reciprocal Light: Teaching Film Production through Film History.” Hollins University, Roanoke, Virginia.

Plus dozens of film introductions at festivals in both the U.S. and Europe, including contemporary works from the U.S., Europe and Asia as well as classics like Citizen Kane, L’Atalante, Man with a Movie Camera and People on Sunday. List available on request. 


Film Related Activities 

Screenwriting Creator and Screenwriter, “The Grand Detour.” Original series of short films about the adventures of tourists across different European cities. Pilot episode, “An Intimate Incident in Prague.”

 1995-2002 USC, short fiction and documentary films in Super-8, 16mm and digital video, trained in both analog and digital technologies. Classes in directing, screenwriting, cinematography, acting, sound and editing.

Edited graduate thesis film L.A. Mohel (dir. David Bezmozgis, 1998). 


Film Programming and Festival Collaborations (most recent) 

2021-2022 Curator, presenter and catalog writer, “Creators of the Photoplay: The Great Women Screenwriters of Hollywood Silent Films.” Program on the female screenwriters of Hollywood silent cinema, for the largest festival of silent films, Le Giornate del Cinema Muto in Pordenone, Italy. 

2019-2020 Curator and presenter, “Greetings from Absurdistan: The Central and Eastern European Cinema of the Absurd, 1950-1989.” Program of restored films from the national film archives of the Czech and Slovak Republics, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia and the former East Germany, to
commemorate the 30th anniversary of the fall of communism in the Soviet block.

Screening at international venues including the CineFan Repertory series in Hong Kong, the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. and the Cinémathêque Québécoise in Montreal, Canada. 

2020 Moderator, “Contemporary Filmmaking Trends in the Visegrad 4 Countries.” Virtual panel with experts for the Visegrad Virtual Film Festival, Sponsored by the Embassies of Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary, in Washington, D.C. Available online:

2018 Presenter and panelist, Budapest Classics Film Marathon. Panel on Ernst Lubitsch and presenter of The Shop Around the Corner (1940). Organized by the Hungarian Film Archive in Budapest, Hungary. 

2016 Presenter and Writer, “’I Capture the World in One Intimate Drop’: An Interview with Helena Třeštíková.” On the filmmaker’s “time-collecting” method of documentary filmmaking. Vilnius Documentary Film Festival catalog (in Lithuanian) and presentation of the filmmaker’s work.

2015 One of three-member international jury, Vilnius Documentary Film Festival, Vilnius, Lithuania. 

2014 Curator and presenter, “Redubbed, Remixed, Remade: Creative Mashups of Film and Music on the Internet.” Art Gallery Fotografic, Prague, Czech Republic. 

July 2014 International Consultant, “Restored Classics of Lithuanian Film.” Arranged screening of first works from the Baltic region at Europe‘s premiere festival for restored films, Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna, Italy. 

April 2014 Curator, program writer, presenter, “Decades on the Road to Freedom: Postwar History through Recent Czech Cinema.” Series of eight recent Czech films chosen to illustrate a different decade from the 1940s to the present day. Presented program as representative of Czech culture at both Cine-Fan Repertory Series and Hong Kong International Film Festival. 

2013 Curator, program writer, presenter of retrospective screenings, Festival of Iranian Films in Prague. Presented Grass (1925) and The Thief of Bagdad (1940), as tribute to Iranian author and cinephile Parviz Davai. 

2011 Curator, program writer and presenter, “Documentary and the City.” Series of international silent to contemporary documentaries on city life, presented at DokuFest, the main cultural event in Kosovo. 

2010 One of 4-member international jury, The Art of the Document Festival, Warsaw, Poland. 


Film Journalism, Consultancies, Institutional Collaborations and Research 

2003-2015 Correspondent for film magazines including Variety, Moviemaker, Filmmaker, DOX, Documentary and POV Magazine. Over 25 articles in both the U.S. and Europe. Reviews of major film festivals like Berlin; documentary festivals in Amsterdam, Sheffield, Thessaloniki, Jihlava and Helsinki; filmmakers including Orson Welles, Dziga Vertov, Todd Haynes and The Yes Men, and features including the role of festivals in film distribution and of film archives in documentaries. Full list on request.

2012 Historical Advisor for film Serena (2014), set in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina, shot in Czech Republic. Directed by Susanne Bier, starring Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence.

2010 Visual Storytelling Consultant for National Aids Research Center to Combat HIV/AIDS, Addis Ababa,Ethiopia. Prepared and taught a two week seminar on visual storytelling to Ethiopian writers, graphic designers and artists. 

2004 Visiting scholar of film restoration, Haghefilm Labs, Amsterdam, Holland. Sponsored visit for a feature article on the techniques of film restoration, published as “The Finesse of the Film Lab” (see peer-reviewed essays). 

2001 Visiting scholar, tours of film institutions, interviews with filmmakers and critics, private film screenings across Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong.

1997 Coordinator of Speakers’ Program and Archivist,
Directors Guild of America, Los Angeles, CA. 

1997 Exhibit Researcher and Liaison, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Los Angeles, CA. 


Radio Programs 

Spring Camp; Summer Film Commentator, Morning Edition on National Public Radio, WCVE 89.9 FM, Richmond,

2004 Creator and Host, “When the Lights Go Out,” (Film Review Program), WCWM 90.7 FM, Williamsburg, VA.


Grants and Fellowships

2003-present Film festivals (Kosovo, Warsaw, Helsinki, Sheffield, Thessaloniki and others)

2010 SERCIA Conference, Besançon, France. 

2010 National Aids Research Centre, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 

2008, 2000 Indiana University, Everett Helm Visiting Fellowship. 

2006 “Scene Insiders,” program of screenwriting seminars and master classes sponsored by The ScriptFactory (UK), one of  three participants granted a full bursary to the Warsaw International Film Festival

2005 INTERCOM (Brazilian Association of Interdisciplinary Communication): hospitality grant as one of
nine U.S. participants in the 2nd Brazil-U.S. Colloquium in Rio de Janeiro

2004 Haghefilm Labs, Amsterdam, Holland: visiting scholar 

2002-03 College of William and Mary, two grants: Reves Center for International Studies, Faculty Travel Grant and American Studies Program, Faculty Travel Grant 



Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS), European Network for Cinema and Media Studies (NECS), International

Documentary Association (IDA). 


Creative Writing and Performances

“Twin Letters from Alien Times.” British Czech and Slovak Review Autumn 2017: 6-7, two imaginary letters
from 1996 and 2016 expressing the Czech Republic’s changing relationship to the European Union. 

“A Night Outside the Záchytka.” British Czech and Slovak Review March/April 2016: 6-7, about riding with city police who bring alcoholics to drunk tanks in Prague.

Featured Author, Alchemy Reading and Performance
Series, on the 25th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution. November 2014, Prague, Czech Republic. Reading from stories The Prague Metamorphoses (including “Pioneers” and “Revizor” ) 

“Three Travel Pioneers.” British Czech and Slovak Review August/September 2014: 6-7, about the
transformations in foreign travel following the Velvet Revolution. 

“Unsuitable Candidates: Academic Search Committees’ Encounters with Genius.” Times Higher Education 20
August 2009: 40-42 (satire under name Belagir M. Synkina).