The Film and Television Masters program (FTMA) at Sacred Heart University offers students a conservatory atmosphere focusing on cinematic storytelling across all platforms.

Scott Burkhardt is a graduate of Columbia University’s School of the Arts where he received an MFA in Film.  While at Columbia, Scott wrote and directed his graduate thesis project, The Assastant, which was a Faculty Selects film and went on to win the 20th Century Fox/Farrelly Brothers Outstanding Achievement in Comedy Award and the Student Choice Award for Best Writing. The film was also nominated for a Student Academy Award.  The film is distributed by Cinetic Media as part of their FilmBuff series on

Scott’s screenplay, Slipstream, was a 2011 Nicholl Fellowship Quarterfinalist and 2010 American Zoetrope Quarterfinalist.  His drama pilot, Revelations, was a 2013 Slamdance Writing Competition Finalist and his half hour comedy pilot, Inflated Dreams, was a 2010 Slamdance Writing Competition Finalist.  Scott was a writer on the NBC one hour drama, Smash, and is currently developing two half hour comedies with Flower Films and Storyline Entertainment.


Mayuran Tiruchelvam is a screenwriter and producer of narrative and documentary films. He is a Sundance Institute Creative Producing Fellow and Film Independent Fellow.He wrote and co-produced the New York based noir THE GIRL IS IN TROUBLE, executive produced by Spike Lee and released by eOne in April 2015.Through his company Dodgeville Films, Mayuran produced TO BE TAKEI – a portrait of actor and activist George Takei, which premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and was released theatrically by Starz Digital; romantic drama ACROSS THE SEA – winner of the Audience Award at the 2015 Slamdance Film Festival; and coming-of-age thriller MY FIRST KISS AND THE PEOPLE INVOLVED.Mayuran co-produced the feature film THE MEND (SXSW 2014). He works as a story, script, budgeting, and pre-production consultant for independent films and dabbles in branded content, non-profit PSAs, and music videos.He earned a BA in African American and American Studies from Wesleyan University in Connecticut and an MFA from Columbia University. Prior to his filmmaking career, he worked as a community organizer against the prison industrial complex and a radical childcare provider in New York.


is a filmmaker and editor, producing film and video through his company Langdon-Boom Productions out of Astoria, Queens since 1998. He received his BFA in Motion Picture, Television and Recording Arts from Florida State University, doing his thesis work in editing.  Matthew has worked in independent film as an associate producer (Tom Noonan’s Wang Dang, Caveh Zahedi’s I Am a Sex Addict, Sophia Takal’s Green), actor (Sam Seder’s A Bad Situationist and Pilot Season, Lawrence Levine’s Gabi on the Roof in July), cameraman (I Am a Sex Addict) and editor (Josh Fox’s Memorial Day, Damon Maulucci & Keir Poltiz’s Detonator, Michael Lavine’s Weekend Away, plus several feature film trailers), and has produced and edited the documentary Air America Radio Presents People vs RNC 2004.  He has created videos with comedians such as Colin Quinn & Jerry Seinfeld (Long Story Short) Todd Barry (Borrowing Saffron), David Cross & Jon Benjamin (Tinkle) and Marc Maron (Break Room Live, WTF) and he’s a regular movie contributor to Sam Seder’s political podcast The Majority Report as “Matthew the Film Guy”. In addition to being a board member of Tom Noonan’s Paradise Factory Film and Theater Workshop, Matthew has taught classes on film at the New School of Social Research, as well as the Central Queens YM&YWHA. Langdon-Boom Productions has also produced commercial videos for a variety of corporate clients such as Starwood Hotels, Coca-Cola, Société Générale, and American Express, as well as promotional videos for a variety of Broadway productions. Matthew’s short films have played at festivals around the country (Little Red Light, Underground Zero) and you can see examples of his work at


Karen Sztajnberg is originally from Brazil and has directed, edited and written films across the spectrum, from PBS broadcast documentary En Route to Baghdad to award winning fiction feature Casa Grande, currently in the international festival circuit.  Karen believes in the cross-fertilization of straddling creative roles and vehicles for artistic expression, always striving to find the most conducive medium for a specific narrative idea.  Peripheral interests include psychoanalysis, linguistics and New Orleans second line.

Kaer Vanice- Studied photography and fiction at University of Kansas and transitioned to narrative film making with an MFA in producing at Columbia University. He has worked as a producer on both commercials and feature films. His credits include PADRE NUESTRO, the Grand Jury Prize Winner at the Sundance Film Festival; TEN STORIES TALL, starring Ally Sheedy, Josh Hamilton, and Jim Gaffigan. His recent work includes HALF THE PERFECT WORLD with Heather Lind and Ryan O’Nan and YELLOW FEVER with James Chen and Jake Choi.

Justin Liberman is a directing fellow in the MFA film program at Columbia University’s School of the Arts.  His award winning films have played in many international film festivals, museums, and galleries including Tribeca Film Festival, Montreal World Fest, Moscow Biennial, and LA Shorts Fest.  His directing work earned him mentorships with prolific filmmakers Michael Mann (Heat, The Insider), David Mamet (House of Games, Spartan), and Allen Coulter (The Sopranos, Hollywoodland).  Liberman’s commercial work has brought him to Vancouver, China, New Zealand, Argentina, and Thailand, for clients such as ESPN, Nike, American Express and Macy’s.  As an educator, Justin has taught film courses at Wesleyan University, Sacred Heart University and was a teaching assistant at Columbia University.

A director and editor for over ten years, Judah is currently finishing his MFA in Film Directing at Columbia University. He has worked as an editor on films that have screened across the world such as Academy-Award-Winner Barbara Kopple’s “Shut Up & Sing,” the mischievous art world documentary “The Art of the Steal,” and “Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks,” for ESPN’s “30 for 30” series. As a director, Judah has done commercial work for the ACLU, General Mills, and Tide, and has had his narrative work screened at film festivals across America.

Dr. Sidney Gottlieb has been a professor at Sacred Heart University since 1976. He is the editor of the Hitchcock Annual, the George Herbert Journal, Hitchcock on Hitchcock (Univ. of California Press), Framing Hitchcock (Wayne State University Press), Hitchcock: Interviews (Univ. of Mississippi Press), and Roberto Rosselini’s Rome Open City (Cambridge University Press). A multiple recipient of Sacred Heart’s scholarship award, Dr. Gottlieb’s collection of Welles’s writings is forthcoming, and he has published essays on Hitchcock, Welles, Eisenstein, Capra, Herbert, Milton, Marvell, Vaughan, Sterne, and Austen, among others. Email:

Dr. Ross is the author of scholarly articles on subjects from Hollywood flappers in the 1920s to contemporary 3-D cinema. She has published in the journals Film History, Camera Obscura, Modernism and Modernity, Aura, and in a number of anthologies. Ross’s course offerings including Women in Film, Film History, Narrative Video Production and Screenwriting. She has been teaching film studies and production at Sacred Heart since 2006.


“Asta the Screwball Dog: Gender, Class and Hollywood’s Canine Sidekick” Cinematic Canines: Dogs and Their Work in the Fiction Film, Under Contract, 2013, Co-authored with Jim Castonguay,

“Invitation to the Voyage: The Flight Sequence in Contemporary 3D Cinema”, Film History, (vol. 24, no. 2), 2012,

“Screening the Modern Girl: Intermediality in the Adaptation of Flaming Youth”, Modernism and Modernity (vol. 17, no. 2), 2010,

“1922 – Movies and the Perilous Future”, American Cinema of the 1920s: Themes and Variations, 2009, Lucy Fischer, editor, Rutgers University Press

“The Americanization of Tsuru Aoki: Orientalism, Melodrama, Star Image and the New Woman”, Camera Obscura 60 (vol. 20, no. 3), 2005, Duke University Press

“‘Good Little Bad Girls’: Silent Comediennes and the Performance of Girlish Sexuality”, Film History, (vol. 13, no. 4), 2001, Lea Jacobs, editor, Indiana University Press

“Early Experiments with the Cinematic Flapper,”Aura, (vol. 6, no. 2), 2000, Kristin Thompson, editor.

“The Hollywood Flapper and the Culture of Media Consumption,” Hollywood Goes Shopping: American Cinema and Consumer Culture, David Desser and Garth Jowett, editors, University of Minnesota Press, 2000.

David Fierro is an actor best known for his starring role as Health Inspector Jacob Speight, a coarse man who’s not above taking a bribe to steer a patient to a particular hospital, in the period drama television series The Knick.
His series work includes Blue Bloods, The Following and Person of Interest; his films include Birdman, Side Effects and Il Giorno in Piu; and his New York theatre credits include the off-Broadway productions of Ethel Sings, As You Like It, Love’s Labor’s Lost, Three Sisters, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Good Person of Szechwan. His regional credits include The Comedy of Errors, Argonautika, The Pillowman and Mother Courage.

Damon Maulucci received his MFA in Screenwriting at Columbia University. He wrote, directed and produced the feature film, DETONATOR, now available on iTunes, Amazon and Hulu. Damon also served as a producer on the feature documentary, PAUL WILLIAMS STILL ALIVE, now airing on Showtime Networks. His films have screened all over the world including Toronto International Film Festival, SXSW, Cinequest, Cork Film Festival, Brooklyn Film Festival and Indie Memphis. Damon Maulucci lives in Brooklyn, NY and teaches as a Visiting Professor in the Film and Television Master’s Program at Sacred Heart University.

Brandon is Brooklyn based and Cincinnati bred, he is  contributing editor at Filmmaker magazine and the director of RedLegs, a New York Times critic’s pick.  He makes a mean brunch on Sunday Morning.

A graduate of Columbia University’s MFA program, Jessica produced Electrick Children which premiered at Berlin and SXSW 2012 and was distributed by Phase 4 films in Spring 2013. Her short film work has premiered at Sundance, Telluride and Tribeca. In 2013 she co-founded Wheelhouse Pictures with Andrew Hauser. Jessica recently wrapped production on Stephen Elliott’s Happy Baby. She is currently in production on Deb Shoval’s AWOL based on the Sundance award-winning short. She is represented by Paradigm Talent Agency.