Wesleyan University, Center for Film Studies and Cinema Archives

Middletown, Connecticut

  • FIRM

    JCJ Architecture


    Wesleyan University

  • AREA

    18,000 sq.ft.





Capitalizing on a central theme of light in motion, the architect successfully married an existing farmhouse’s architecture with modern design to create the new $4.2 million, 18,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Center for Film Studies and Cinema Archives at Wesleyan University.

Situated on a transitional site between the university and a residential ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMMacchi Engineers, LLC; Bemis Associates, LLC; FIP Construction, Inc.; Janson Design GroupCOST PER SQ FT$233.00CITATIONPost-Secondary CitationFEATURED IN2007 Architectural Portfolio district, the new light-filled center consolidates program resources from across campus, supports nearly 100 classes and 70 majors, and provides for future growth.

Placement of the 400-seat theater at an angle behind the current archives diminishes its size and scale within the neighborhood. Brick and limestone materials were chosen for their compatibility with the surrounding neighborhood and campus. Program-specific components include specially designed film-production facilities and classrooms, faculty offices and equipment storage space.

An enclosed atrium serves as an informal gathering space between the center and cinema archives, which are linked with a glass connector. A new gallery features collections from more than 20 key figures in American film history, including Academy-Award winners Clint Eastwood, Frank Capra and Martin Scorsese.

“Good integration of new and existing spaces; great use of materials.”--2007 jury