Tom Garrett, M.F.A.

Tom Garrett Headshot Associate Professor
Chair of Communication, Film, & Media Studies

Communication, Film, & Media Studies
College of Arts and Sciences

M.F.A., New York University, Tisch School of the Arts

B.A., University of New Haven

About Tom

I always tell my students to: “Find something they love to do. Go where they can, to do it. But as soon as you’re there, help someone else out.”

Tom Garrett is an alumnus of University of New Haven. Previous to joining the Communication, Film & Media Department at the University of New Haven he was Film Program Coordinator at Sam Houston State University and Assistant Professor at the University of Tampa. He is a producer of feature and documentary films and a founding partner of Circa Films, an international sales and distribution company. He has intimate knowledge of international co-production issues involved with production, having produced, directed and delivered films to the global marketplace.


Tom has worked as executive producer, producer, line producer, unit production manager and director. He has also served as a consultant on production issues, including: budgets, financing, guilds, unions, legal affairs and DYI distribution ranging from low-budget independents to studio-level pictures.

Tom's films have screened at many prestigious film festivals worldwide, including Berlin, Florence and Toronto; and television outlets like A & E, USA Network and TF1 (France). For over two decades he has played an active role at the Cannes Film Festival’s Marche du Film and the Producers Network.

In addition to his feature film career, Tom has worked as a producer and director for advertising agencies and public relations firms such as Chiat-Day/Mojo, JWT, BBD&O; with clients including Chanel, Reebok, Tag Heuer and Calvin Klein. His additional clients have also included Def Jam and Island Records, where he produced music videos for the likes of Run-D.M.C. and U2.

Tom Garrett is a member of the Producers Network at the Cannes Film Festival, Director of Special Initiatives for the Sarasota Film Festival and is a juror for the International Emmy® Awards, annually.

He has taught undergraduate and graduate classes. And with strong international ties, courses related to international media production and distribution, with experiential travel components to Europe, Asia and Latin America, including a world-class course at the Cannes Film Festival annually.

Teaching Specialties
  • Film Producing and Production
  • Film History and Theory
  • Media Marketing and Distribution
  • New Media Platforms
Research Interests/Recent Publications, Productions

Film and Digital Media Production; Cinema Studies; New Platforms of Global Media.

Tom’s research interests focuses on media production in the ever-changing entrepreneurial global marketplace. His recent research includes the publication of Sometimes You Lose: The Films of John Avildsen-Rocky, The Karate Kid and Other Underdogs. And a international documentary The Magic History Of Cinema which showcases magic and movies long continued history. The film explores how the origins of cinema are closely linked to the conjurors and illusionists of the early 20th century and how those ties continue with today’s top filmmakers and magicians.


Director of Special Initiatives for the Sarasota Film Festival

Member of the University Film and Video Association (UFVA)

Awards, Activities, Honors (Selected)

1st Place Feature Film Script 2014 UFVA (University Film and Video Association) Conference

Producers Network at the Cannes Film Festival, annually

Juror for the International Emmy® Awards, annually

Department Advisor 

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