Governors

The BFI is a registered charity, established by royal charter and governed by a board of up to 15 governors.

Jay Hunt OBE (Chair)

Jay Hunt OBE is Apple TV+ Creative Director for Europe. She is the only person to have led BBC One, Channel 5 and Channel 4. She started her career at BBC News working on Newsnight and Panorama before becoming editor of both the One O’clock and Six O’clock News. She was Controller of BBC Daytime and Director of Programmes at Channel 5, before returning to the BBC in 2008 to run BBC One. In 2011 she was made the first Chief Creative Officer of Channel 4. Over the next seven years, she led what was described as a “creative renaissance”. She has commissioned an array of global hits including Luther, Sherlock, Slow Horses, Black Mirror, Derry Girls and Gogglebox and in 2023 was named one of the 35 most powerful women in TV by the Hollywood Reporter. Jay was awarded an OBE in the King’s 2023 Birthday Honours for services to the arts.

Having been first appointed to the BFI Board of Governors in 2020, in January 2024 Jay was appointed as Chair for a four-year term commencing on 16 February 2024.

Michael Birshan

Michael is a Senior Partner at McKinsey & Company. He leads the firm’s Strategy & Corporate Finance Practice globally and serves on the council of the McKinsey Global Institute. Passionate about education, communication and creativity, Michael is a governor of the Royal College of Art and a former trustee of the Marshall Scholarships and the World Schools Debating Championships. Michael chairs the BFI’s Finance Committee.

Monica Chadha

Monica  is  an  experienced  board  advisor  with  over  25 years’  experience in  the  creative industries. She advises a number of organisations including the International Union of Cinemas (UNIC); British Association for Screen Entertainment (BASE); Digital Entertainment Group International (DEGI); and serves on the CMI President’s Advisory Council; the Bias in AI Research Group at Durham University; and the All Party Parliamentary Group for AI.

In 2018 Monica was appointed ambassador for Women on Boards and a ‘Super NED’. In 2019 she was one of the top 50 Women to Watch in the UK in the Female FTSE Board Report. She is also a long-term global coach for a multinational entertainment company; and a faculty member of the FT Board Director Programme.

Monica was previously CEO of MyMovies.Net Ltd, Vice Chair of Queen Mary University of London and Chair of Remuneration; Founder and Co-Chair of the Deloitte Higher Education Cyber Security Group; Chair of the British Independent Film Awards Advisory Board and the British Board of Film Classification Advisory Group; a member of the BAFTA Digital Communications Board and Non-Executive Director positions at British Video Association; Voddess Portal Ltd; and Obviously Creative Ltd. Early in her Monica career was Head of Operations for various film distributors and started out at Technicolor Distribution.

Anwen Griffiths

Anwen Griffiths is Head of Legal and Business Affairs at BBC Film. Anwen was previously a senior partner at a leading private practice firm for the media, technology and creative industries, advising on all legal and commercial aspects of production and finance across the screen sectors, including film, television and games.

With a background in film production, Anwen has also been heavily involved in supporting public funders in the growth of indigenous talent, having previously worked at the BFI and spent six years as a member (and subsequently vice-chair) of Ffilm Cymru Wales, the delegate for National Lottery funding in Wales, with specific focus on promoting a sustainable sector and culture.

Anwen is also a member of the British Screen Forum and serves on the BFI’s Audit, Risk and Governance Committee.

Elizabeth Karlsen

Elizabeth is an internationally renowned, award-winning producer. She co-founded the leading independent UK-based production company Number 9 Films in 2002 with partner Stephen Woolley, garnering 57 BAFTA nominations and wins and 23 Academy Award nominations and wins.

In February 2019, Elizabeth and Stephen jointly received the highly prestigious and coveted BAFTA Award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema. She has produced some of the most celebrated independent films in the US and Europe including: Todd Haynes’s Carol (nominated for six Academy Awards, six Golden Globe Awards, and nine BAFTA Awards); Mark Herman’s Little Voice (winner of a Golden Globe Award, nominated for one Academy Award, six Golden Globe Awards, and six BAFTA Awards); Neil Jordan’s The Crying Game (winner of an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award, and nominated for six Academy Awards); Made in Dagenham (nominated for three BAFTA Awards); Phyllis Nagy’s Mrs. Harris (nominated for 12 Emmy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards, and a PGA Award); Wash Westmoreland’s Colette (nominated for four BIFAs and an Independent Spirit Award); and Paolo Sorrentino’s Youth (nominated for one Academy Award and winner of three European Film Awards).

Elizabeth and Stephen’s latest feature Living – a reworking of Kurosawa’s classic Ikiru – received numerous accolades including three BAFTA Award nominations and two Academy Award nominations. Their upcoming projects include Fleur Fortuné’s The Assessment, starring Alicia Vikander and Elizabeth Olsen, and award-winning theatre director Marianne Elliott’s feature debut The Salt Path, starring Gillian Anderson and Jason Isaacs.

Declan Keeney

Declan Keeney PhD, FRSA is a Professor (Chair) of Screen Technologies & Innovation at Ulster University and Director of the Ulster Screen Academy. He is an expert advisor on the screen industry’s future workforce needs and in emerging screen technologies trends such as real-time VFX workflows. Declan co-founded Studio Ulster, in Northern Ireland, a £75m large scale commercial virtual production and real-time visual effects studio in partnership with Belfast Harbour Studios, Northern Ireland Screen and Ulster University.

Declan is a Fellow of The Royal Society of Arts and a member of the British Council’s Arts & the Creative Economy Advisory Group. His current research portfolio in support of the screen industries represents £91.5m worth of live grant-based research and development investments. Declan is an AHRC/DCMS Policy Fellow in the Future Observatory at the Design Museum in London exploring net zero and carbon reduction using emerging technologies for film production. He leads the CoSTAR Network Lab in NI, a £17m investment in a world class research lab and part of the largest research network for Virtual Production in Europe. Declan is a Co-investigator at Future Screens Northern Ireland and a Co-investigator on a an EPSRC Network+ project entitled ‘Virtual Production in a Digital Economy’. He has over 25 years of film and television production experience, including 13 years as staff at the BBC.

Laura Miele

Laura is a seasoned technology and media executive with 25+ years of leadership in development, marketing, commercial, and data/analytics in the operation and strategic guidance of interactive entertainment. As President of EA Entertainment & Technology, she leads EA’s portfolio of licensed and owed IP and oversees key development studios, alongside leading central technology and development services. Prior to this, Laura served as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Studios Officer of EA.

Laura is passionate about increasing the number of opportunities for women and underrepresented talent, leading EA’s efforts to advance representation across the company and its games. Laura founded the EA Women’s Ultimate Team Employee Resource Group to promote gender diversity and equality inside and outside the organization and an inclusion framework as part of the game development process leading to EA SPORTS FIFA 16 being the first AAA sports title to integrate female players — four years before it became the industry standard.

Laura is amongst AdAge’s “Women to Watch” list, San Francisco Business Times “Most Influential Women in Business,” and Variety’s Entertainment Gaming Leaders, a member of Fast Company’s Impact Council and a member of The Game Awards Advisory Board.

Dr Romana Ramzan

Dr Romana Ramzan is a producer at the BAFTA-winning No Code Studio in Glasgow, Scotland. Over the past decade, Romana has demonstrated a commitment and desire to drive forward changes in the industry to make it a safer and more welcoming space for people from underrepresented groups through her advocacy work. She has been at the forefront of driving innovative initiatives, within the industry and academia, that have demonstrated success nationally and internationally.

Romana was one of the main founders and organisers of Scottish Game Jam; she was previously a Director of the Global Game Jam and has also served on the BAFTA Scotland Committee for Games. She was one of Develop Magazine’s “30 Under 30”, and in March 2014 Romana was awarded the Asian Woman of the Future Award at the Scottish Asian Women’s Awards. Most recently, Romana was named as one of the Top 100 Women in Games in the UK by MCV.

Robin Saunders

Robin Saunders is Managing Partner of Clearbrook Capital Partners, a private investment and advisory group working with growth companies across a variety of sectors, including entertainment, business services, real estate, Fintech and asset management.

Prior to founding Clearbrook, Robin was a corporate banker leading global teams specialising in securitisation and principal finance within banks including Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, and WestLB. She has served on numerous boards in retail, entertainment, financial services, healthcare, consumer products and utilities sectors. She has also served on the board of the UK government’s industry regulator Office of Rail and Road.  

Robin is a Visiting Fellow of the Said Business School at the University of Oxford, a Commissioner of the US-UK Fulbright Commission and an enthusiastic supporter of arts and education organisations.

Andrew Smith OBE DL

Andrew M. Smith OBE DL joined the Pinewood Studios Group in June 2008 as Corporate Affairs Director. Synonymous with world class British and international productions, the Pinewood Studios Group is home to some of the most successful feature films and TV shows of all time, including James Bond and Star Wars.

Andrew is chair of the Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership; a member of BAFTA, the British Film Commission Advisory Board, the British Screen Forum, the Department of International Trade Creative Industries Trade Advisory Group and a governor of the British Film Institute. In June 2021 Andrew was made a Deputy Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire and in January 2022 was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 2022 New Year’s Honours for services to ‘Business and the British Film Industry’.

Phil Stokes

Phil Stokes was a partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers up until his retirement at the end of 2023. He has an extensive background in working with, auditing and advising film and media companies. He led PwC’s entertainment and media industry group in the UK for 12 years to 2017 and its EMEA Telecoms, Media and Technology practice from 2011 to 2015.

He founded and led the firm’s global Digital Transformation group, responding to the impact of new technologies and changing consumer behaviours across all industries. He advised companies and charities on financial controls, risk management, corporate governance and financial reporting. 

Phil is a partner in The Clive Barker Archive and has co-authored several books with and about the author, artist and filmmaker Clive Barker. He is a trustee of Groundwork London, a school governor, a commissioner on the Durham Commission and chairs the BFI’s Audit, Risk and Governance Committee. 

Scott Stuber

Scott Stuber served as Head of Global Films at Netflix between 2017 to 2024, overseeing the development, production and acquisition of the Netflix film slate.

Hits delivered under Scott’s supervision at Netflix include: Academy Award and BAFTA winning The Power of the Dog, Academy Award nominee Don’t Look Up, Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman, Academy Award winner Marriage Story, Red Notice, The Adam Project, and three-time Academy Award winner Roma. Prior to Netflix, he founded and ran Bluegrass Films, which produced such hits as Ted, Central Intelligence and Safe House.

A former Vice Chairman of worldwide production at Universal Studios, he was responsible for films including A Beautiful Mind, 8 Mile, Meet the Parents and its follow-up films, plus both the Bourne and Fast & Furious franchises. Scott is on the board and active with a variety of organisations, including the National Film Preservation Foundation, Charlotte + Gwenyth Gray Foundation, Baby2Baby and Chrysalis.

Nell Whitley

Eleanor (Nell) Whitley has a reputation for driving forward ambitious work in a variety of forms – live events, art installations & digital media – her collaborations with Marshmallow Laser Feast (where she is Executive Producer) demonstrate a unique vision for the future of creative experiences. She has produced the critically acclaimed In the Eyes of the Animal (Sundance New Frontier 2016, Wired Award for Innovation in Experience Design) and other mixed reality works, including; A Colossal Wave (SXSW 2018), Treehugger (Tribeca Film Festival Storyscapes Award 2017 & Best VR Film at Arles Festival) and We Live in an Ocean of Air which premiered at the Saatchi Gallery, London (2018-9).

Edgar Wright

Edgar Wright first gained worldwide recognition for his Three Flavours Cornetto film trilogy consisting of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End, each made with actors Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as well as producer Nira Park, all frequent collaborators. He worked with the same team while directing the late-1990s/early-2000s television series Spaced. Wright also co- wrote, produced and directed the 2010 film Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Along with Joe Cornish and Steven Moffat, he co-wrote Steven Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn in 2011.

He wrote and directed the 2017 action crime film Baby Driver, which went on to become a global box office hit, and in 2021 directed and co-wrote, with Krysty Wilson-Cairns, Last Night in Soho which starred Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith, and Dame Diana Rigg in her final film role. 2021 also saw the release of Wright’s first documentary film, The Sparks Brothers, covering the entire 50-year legacy of Ron and Russell Mael of California pop band Sparks, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival that year.