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Citing Film, Video and Online Media: Home

Presents citation style for a variety of media formats, slightly adapted from the MLA style sheet.

Introduction to Citing Media

When citing film and other media, use the citation form for the format in which you watched the work being cited.  For example:

  • If you watched the film The Color Purple on DVD and wish to cite it, use the citation format for DVD (not the original film).
  • If you watched The Color Purple in a movie theater, use the citation format for film.
  • If you are citing a documentary or program that you watched on DVD, but which was originally broadcast on television or streamed on the internet, use the citation format for the DVD.
  • If you are citing a movie trailer that you watched on the internet, use the citation format for online resources.

What to Include in Media Citations

Include the following elements in the following order, with as much information as is available from the media package or other sources.  If you are citing the contribution of a particular performer or the director of a work, you may choose to include the person's name first in the citation (last name, first name).

You may include other data that seems pertinent, such as writer of screenplay or writer of work upon which the film is based, depending on the focus of your research.

  • DVD, Video or Film Title (in italics)
  • Series Title (no italics or quotation marks)
  • Director/Filmmaker OR Personal Producer OR Corporate/Institutional Producer
  • Other individuals responsible for the work (e.g., writer) if relevant
  • Key Actors or other Key Performers (if the focus of your research)
  • If the work being cited is in the original format (i.e. you've viewed the film in a theater), cite the Studio Name OR Production Company followed by production date OR original release date (if known)
  • Format (if the version you're citing is video, DVD or online)
  • Distributor (i.e. DVD or video distributor or online streaming platform)
  • Distribution Date (separated from the distributor by a comma)

Film & Media Librarian