Bernadine Mellis

Five College Senior Lecturer in Film & Video Production

Contact & Office Hours


M.F.A., Temple University

A.B., Smith College


Bernadine Mellis makes films that range from experimental fiction to nonfiction and combine the genres of personal narrative and political documentary. Her film The Forest for the Trees tells the story of her father, Dennis Cunningham, and his role as attorney in forest protection activist Judi Bari's civil case against the FBI.

In addition to several short films, Mellis also directed The Odyssey, a collaborative adaptation of Homer's 24-chapter epic, made up of 24 shorts by 24 mostly queer, trans and women filmmakers. Mellis is working on two projects: an archive of stories of children of the New Left, and Core, a documentary that follows visionary designer Katrina Spade as she builds the prototype for the Urban Death Project, a system and ritual for composting the dead.

Mellis also teaches at Mount Holyoke College.