I studied at the University of Warwick and University of East Anglia. I completed my PhD on the film career of British star Ivor Novello in 2001, and since that year have been teaching at the University of Southampton, where I am Professor of Film and am currently Head of Department.
I have published widely on film, and my research interests include silent cinema, star studies, the representation of the past, British cinema, film and the First World War, gender and sexuality and popular film and television.
Recently, I have been researching the relationship between film stardom, history and classicism in contemporary cinema, including the use of stars in the cycle of classical epics following Ridley Scott's Gladiator (1999).
I teach across all levels of the undergraduate and postgraduate curriculum at Southampton, including modules on stardom, film noir, and the representation of the past.