How to Reference a Movie in the Body of Text in APA Format

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Few media both capture and transmit our popular culture the way movies do. If you use movies in your research, cite them using guidelines similar to those for conventional print sources. The APA style guide, 6th edition, provides rules and examples for referencing these sources within the body of your paper.


When referencing a movie, follow the citation with the producer’s surname and the director's surname with an ampersand and the movie’s date, after by a comma; enclose the entire citation within parentheses. If the film has two producers, give both surnames. If there are three to five producers, list them all on the first reference, but on subsequent references, list only the first one, followed by et al. If the film has six or more producers, use the first listed producer and et al. on all references.


A citation for “Throne of Blood,” which has two producers, one of whom is also the director, would look like this: (Kurosawa & Motoki, 1957). A citation for “The Secret of Kells,” however, would look like this, because the film has seven producers, including the director: (Brunner et al., 2009). If the director is also a producer, you do not have to list that name twice.


About the Author

Jennifer Spirko has been writing professionally for more than 20 years, starting at "The Knoxville Journal." She has written for "MetroPulse," "Maryville-Alcoa Daily Times" and "Some" monthly. She has taught writing at North Carolina State University and the University of Tennessee. Spirko holds a Master of Arts from the Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-on-Avon, England.

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