Friends of the BFI

US taxpayers may be interested in supporting the Friends of the British Film Institute (BFI).

About friends of the British Film Institute

The Friends of the BFI is a California-based US 501(c)(3) non-profit organisation that supports the work of the BFI in the UK and the US. Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

The Friends of the BFI grants essential funding in support of the BFI National Archive, one of the greatest collections of film in the world. With over one million film and television titles from 1895 to today, its collections include the original camera negatives of some of Britain’s best loved films, including Alfred Hitchcock’s Blackmail (1929), and Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s The Red Shoes (1948). With more than 20,000 silent films, it is also one of the most extensive archives of early cinema, and the largest collection of American silent films outside the US.

Film is an extremely fragile medium and the BFI spends over $14m a year just to maintain the collections, which require expensive specialist care and optimum storage conditions. Additionally, each year, our film restoration program brings back to life films that would otherwise not be seen, from Hitchcock’s nine surviving silent films to The Epic of Everest, the original documentary of Mallory and Irvine’s 1924 British expedition to Mount Everest. The BFI is also committed to digitising 10,000 archive titles to bring our collections to new audiences in cinemas, on television, on DVD and online.

US event programme

The Friends of the BFI hosts regular events in the US, currently in San Francisco, but with a view to expansion to the East Coast in 2017. We launched the Friends of the BFI patron programme in late 2014 with an exclusive preview of Mr. Turner (Dir. Mike Leigh. UK 2014), attended by the film’s Oscar-nominated lead, Timothy Spall.

More recent event highlights have included a preview of Suffragette (Dir. Sarah Gavron. UK 2015) with a Q&A with the film’s producer, Alison Owen, and a screening with live musical accompaniment of the BFI National Archive’s restoration of the 1928 silent film Shooting Stars (Dirs. Anthony Asquith, AV Bramble. UK 1928) at the magnificent Castro Theatre, in partnership with the San Francisco Silent Film Festival.

Our US Patrons also receive an invitation to our annual Patrons’ Gala at the BFI London Film Festival, an amazing opportunity to walk the red carpet at one of world’s leading film festivals. At last year’s LFF, Patrons were treated to the UK premiere of the hugely acclaimed La La Land (Dir. Damien Chazelle. USA 2016) with members of the cast and crew in attendance.

Join as a patron

For a minimum donation of $2,000 you can enjoy a package of Patron benefits that includes:

  • Invitations for you and a guest to 2 Friends of the BFI events per year in the US
  • Invitation for you and a guest to a red carpet Gala during the BFI London Film Festival
  • Invitation to purchase BFI London Film Festival package (extra costs apply)
  • Invitation to join the BFI’s annual trip(s) to international film festivals (extra costs apply)
  • Regular updates from the Friends of the BFI
  • Acknowledgment of your support

Download a donation form

For more information, or to find other ways you can support the Friends of the BFI, please contact Claire Alfrey:

Claire Alfrey
+44 (0) 20 7815 1400

Friends of the British Film Institute is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Donations to it are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. EIN: 95-4334449.

  • BFI Patron

    BFI Patron

    Enjoy a tailor-made programme of events throughout the year while providing vital support to our core charitable work. From £1500 a year.

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