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James PelleritoAssistant Teaching Professor


Born and raised in Italy, James Pellerito is an award-winning fiction and documentary filmmaker. Pellerito’s work has screened at over 200 festivals worldwide (including AFI Docs, Berlinale, Dance on Camera, Frameline, Full Frame, NewFest and Outfest), won over thirty awards, aired on HBO Latino, Sundance TV, Logo TV, PBS America, Biography Australia, NTV Japan, QTV Korea, and been reviewed in Variety, The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Los Angeles Times and The Hollywood Reporter. His feature documentaries include Pop Star On Ice (2009, IFC Center), American Cheerleader (2014, Fathom Events), and Anatomy of a Male Ballet Dancer (2018, Film Forum), all produced with David Barba. Pellerito served as Co-Creator, Director and Executive Producer on two seasons of his series Be Good Johnny Weir (2010, 2012). His narrative short Maree [Tides] (2003) qualified for the 2005 Academy Awards.

Pellerito is the Co-Founder and Director of the New York City Short Film Festival (NYC Shorts), currently in its twentieth year, and he is a graduate of the 2-year Meisner acting program at The Neighborhood Playhouse. He has taught at Emory since 2020.


American Association for Italian Studies (AAIS)
Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS)
Society for Italian Studies (SIS)


MFA in Directing & Screenwriting, Columbia University
MA in Humanities, New York University
BA in Film Studies, Columbia University