University of Vermont

The College of Arts and Sciences

Film and Television Studies

Faculty - Deborah Ellis

Deborah Ellis

Deborah Ellis, Associate Professor and Director of Film and Television Program

  • MFA, Northwestern University
  • BA, Lawrence University
  • C.V. (PDF)
Area of expertise


Contact Information


Office: 321 Old Mill

Spring 2018 Office Hours: W 2:00 - 3:30 and by appointment

Current Work in Progress:

End of Love End of Love (pre-production) Matt, Neil, Josh and Zach sought out pornography on the Internet as adolescents. Today they are convicted felons on the National Sex Offender Registry. Their names, photos and addresses are public information available on the Internet. Their residency, movement and employment options are extremely limited.

End of Love is about the epidemic of adolescent boys and men who are being convicted of downloading child pornography. Law enforcement officials say that these charges constitute the fastest growing prosecuted crimes in the US. What is going on?

End of Love questions why and how the impulse to seek out child pornography originates in boys and men. Is their on-line sexual exploration and arousal responding to the normalization of sexualized images of underage girls in popular culture? Taking into consideration new discoveries in brain development and addictive behavior, does uncontrolled access to the cornucopia of sexual acts on the Internet at an early age pre-dispose youth to become eventual consumers of child pornography? Or not?

Current Work in Progress:

Peace Peace Has No Borders (post-production)

A group of Iraq and Afghan War resisters from the United States seek refuge in an increasingly conservative Canada. Caught between two countries they’ll fight their battle in the legal system, Parliament, and the court of public opinion, to win the right to remain in Canada. Scheduled for completion in Spring 2014.

Selected Work:

furies production FURIES, Producer/Director/Editor, 2010, 9:53 min.

FURIES, Producer/Director/Editor, 2010, 9:53 min. Drawing from a cross-cultural array of spells, amulets, film, and glitter, Ellis creates a multi-screen video installation to probe the possibility of extending a protective shield to individuals afflicted with 'dumb luck.' Originally created for presentation in a collection of solo performance events, the video now stands on it's own as an exploration of the bond between mother and son, and the eventual relinquishment of that bond as the son faces the world around him. As that bond dissipates, the role of mother as protector changes.

Selected Work:

Can't be Neutral Howard Zinn:
You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train

"It's a far more effective leftist argument than the bombastic Fahrenheit 9/11.", Lou Lumenick, New York Post

In these turbulent times, Howard Zinn is inspiring a new generation. This acclaimed film looks at the amazing life of the renowned historian, activist and author. Following his early days as a shipyard labor organizer and bombardier in World War II, Zinn became an academic rebel and leader of civil disobedience in a time of institutionalized racism and war. His influential writings shine light on and bring voice to factory workers, immigrant laborers, African Americans, Native Americans and the working poor.

Featuring rare archival materials and interviews with Zinn and colleagues such as Noam Chomsky, You Can’t Be Neutral captures the essence of this extraordinary man who has been a catalyst for progressive change for more than 60 years.

Narrated by Matt Damon • Featuring music by Pearl Jam, Woody Guthrie & Billy Bragg!