Denise Mok

PhD Student


Denise Mok is a PhD student in the Cinema Studies program at the University of Toronto. Her research interests include early to Classical cinema, star studies and transnational stardoms; feminist historiography; faciality, celebrity, and modernity; film adaptation; and archiveologies and material ephemera.

Most recently, Denise completed an MA in Film & Media Studies at Columbia University in 2018. She was a researcher on Columbia’s Women Film Pioneers Project and organized the faculty research seminar series, Sites of Cinema. She has led seminars in Early Cinema and the Avant-Garde (Columbia University) and Introduction to Cinema Studies (University of Toronto). Her most recent publication is an article on American actress Marion Davies, titled: “Transcending Categories, Staging Autonomy: Marion Davies’s Transitions from Showgirl to Screen Star and Producer-Manager” (published Fall 2018 in Nineteenth Century Theatre & Film Journal, by SAGE UK). She will also be contributing a chapter on Greta Garbo in Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise, 1931; dir. Robert Z. Leonard) to the forthcoming anthology, Screening #TimesUp: Exploring Rape Culture in Hollywood History.

Selected Work

Forthcoming Publications

  • Book Review: The Colour Fantastic: Chromatic Worlds of Silent Cinema, eds. by Giovanna Fossati, Victoria Jackson, Bregt Lameris, Elif Rongen-Kaynakci, Sarah Street, and Joshua Yumibe (2019).
  • Book Review: Dark Star: The Biography of Vivien Leigh, by Alan Strachan (2020).
  • Book Chapter: “Garbo Caught Between Two Stardoms: Rape and Sexual Display in Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise) (1931)." In Screening #TimesUp: Exploring Rape Culture in Hollywood History.


  • 2018 University of Toronto's Faculty of Arts and Sciences Top (FAST) Doctoral Award
  • 2016-2017 Columbia Research Fellow - Women Film Pioneers Project 
  • 2016-2017 Columbia University Faculty of Arts Deans Travel Grant


MA, Columbia University
BA, University of British Columbia


“Star Scrapbooks!: The Edith Nadajewski Star Scrapbook Collection at the TIFF Film Reference Library." FSAC 2019, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, 2019.
“Smoke Gets in Your Cheongsams: Nostalgic Time and Time-Travel in Wong Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love (2000)." University of Toronto’s CompLit Conference - “Timepieces,” Toronto, Ontario, 2019.
Panel Chair: "Woman's Labour and Feminism." Stars and Screen Media History Conference, Rowan University, Glassboro, New Jersey, 2018.
“Hong Kong Actor Tony Leung Chiu-Wai’s Star Charisma and the Male Melodrama in Infernal Affairs I." Columbia Graduate Conference on Melodrama, New York City, 2017.
“Stella’s Spaces: Selfhood under Surveillance in Two Film Adaptations of Stella Dallas, 1925 and 1937." SCMS 2017, Chicago, 2017.