Our credits tell the story.

Top film and television people teach at the School - Stephen Frears (The Queen), Brian Tufano (Trainspotting), David G. Croft (Shooting Stars, Crystal Maze), Lynda Myles (The Commitments) and Nik Powell (Ladies in Lavender, The Crying Game, Little Voice) to name but five. For more information about our Heads of Department please see below:

Heads of Department

Ian Stubbs Course Leader - Cameras, Sound and Vision Mixing for Television Production

Ian Stubbs joined the BBC in 1974 as a Trainee Camera Assistant. Following three months at the BBC’s Engineering Training Centre at Wood Norton he moved to BBC Television Centre in west London and spent nine years learning and practicing the craft of TV Cameraman on shows as diverse as The Good Life, Question Time, Top of the Pops, Parkinson, The Morcambe and Wise Show, The Two Ronnies and I, Claudius.

In 1983 he joined BBC Television Presentation as an Assistant Producer making trailers for BBC One and BBC Two and directing the channels themselves as a Network Director. In 1985 he launched ‘in-vision’ presentation of CBBC (on BBC One) with Phillip Schofield in the ‘Broom Cupboard’, as Continuity suite 1 became known to millions of children.

In 1987 Ian joined Children’s TV where he directed several shows, again working with Phillip Schofield and other Children’s favourites of the time including The Chuckle Brothers. Returning to Presentation to produce holiday programming for children and daytime programmes for both BBC One and BBC Two, some of which he also directed and vision mixed live.

Returning to promotion making Ian won two awards for a trailer for a Radio Four called ‘Hearing is Believing’. (This was the first BBC promotion to be run in cinemas and was shot at Shepperton Studios on 35mm film.) He also ran several major launch campaigns for new schedules for channel controllers of BBC One and BBC Two.

Ian then moved on and became a ‘Presentation Editor’ responsible for running the BBC TV channels on a moment by moment basis. He was on duty the night that Diana, Princess of Wales died in a car crash in Paris and managed the BBC TV channels responses, including BBC World, as the nation awoke to the news.

Promoted to Managing Editor he managed the build and introduction of the Digital Transmission Area for the launch of BBC Choice (now BBC Three), BBC Knowledge (now BBC Four), CBBC and CBeebies using new multi-channel play out systems for the latter.

Following the launch of the BBC’s digital services in 1998 Ian was promoted to Head of Playout and led the Presentation teams through a two year change management programme and then into a new state-of-the-art Broadcast Centre at White City. More than 50 TV channels were moved over a period of 18 months.

As the facility developed Ian became Head of Operational Strategy and then Head of Technology Operations, finally leaving the organisation, which had become Red Bee Media by then, in July 2009 to take some time out and set up his own corporate video and training company.

Since then Ian has delivered many courses in Apple’s Final Cut Pro, Motion and Colour and is an Apple Certified Master Trainer. He has consulted for the BBC and he has shot and edited a number of corporate videos for companies large and small. He is delighted to have joined the NFTS in December 2012 to teach and guide students starting out on their media career in TV studios.

Oliver Stapleton Co-Head of Cinematography

Oliver is a graduate of the NFTS and started out with music videos for legendary artists such as David Bowie and the Rolling Stones and won the MTV award for best cinematography for A-Ha’s The Sun always Shines on TV. He has worked on a wide range of films including My Beautiful Laundrette, The Grifters, Cider House Rules and The Proposal.

Stuart Harris Co-Head of Cinematography / Course Leader - Directing Commercials

Stuart Harris began his career at Elstree Studios. He worked on many productions before working on films including Stanley Kubrick’s 2001, Ken Russell’s The Boyfriend and Peter Hall’s Three Into Two Won’t Go. He became an award winning cinematographer photographing David Hare’s Wetherby which won him the coveted Golden Bear Award at the Berlin Film Festival. Stuart then went on to win many awards for his creative work on commercials and music videos throughout the world. He is particularly proud of his work with the late legendary Storm Thorgerson for Pink Floyd.

John Keane Acting Head of Composing

John Keane is a British BAFTA and BFI Award-winning film and television composer. He has been nominated for two British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) awards, for A Very British Coup in 1989 and Hornblower: The Even Chance in 1999.

John's many credits include the 1993 miniseries Tales of the City, the 1998 film Hideous Kinky and multiple instalments of Hornblower between 1998 and 2003.

His first television commission was for the highly acclaimed serial A Very British Coup for director Mick Jackson. The serial received a BAFTA Nomination for Best Music, Since then John has written the music for a host of high-profile television drama, including Tales From The City, Hearts and Minds, Kavanagh QC, Far From The Madding Crowd, Wives and Daughters, The Last of the Blonde Bombshells, Anna Karenina, The Russian Bride, Gunpowder Treason & Plot, Mansfield Park, the Emmy Award-winning Hornblower and Heroes and Villains: "Shogun and Cortes"

John has written music for a number of award-winning documentary series, including Molly Dineen's BBC The Ark, winner of a BAFTA Award, and The House, about London's Royal Opera House. He has also written music for a number of feature films, including four films directed by Gilles McKinnon – Small Faces, Trojan Eddie, Hideous Kinky starring Kate Winslet, and Tara Road. His more recent works include Inspector George Gently and Case Histories.

Tim Wright Co-Course Leader - Creative Producing for Digital Platforms

Tim Wright is a digital writer and cross platform writer with more than 20 years’ experience of devising, developing and deploying cutting-edge interactive experiences.

For four years, he was a director of NoHo Digital, one of the UK’s most successful independent digital agencies of the 1990s where he was also lead writer on the team which won the first BAFTA ever awarded for interactive comedy. He went on to co-found XPT, the ground-breaking digital entertainment company, where he co-devised and scripted the world’s first webcam+email drama, the BAFTA-winning ‘Online Caroline’. Since 2006, Tim has continued to experiment with storytelling, interactivity and the web, winning awards and working on projects such as ‘In Search of Oldton’ and ‘The Telectroscope’. He’s also helped to develop major programmes, crossplatform campaigns, websites and digital strategies for big media & cultural organisations such as the BBC, CBBC, Channel 4, 4iP, The Science Museum, The RSC, Royal Opera House, Orange and Sony.

His most recent productions include a John Cage Centenary ‘MusicWalk’, BBC’s interactive drama-documentary ‘Footballers United’, and the Web StoryBox installation within the Information Age gallery at the Science Museum, featuring Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Josie Long.

Kim Plowright Co-Course Leader - Creative Producing for Digital Platforms

Kim Plowright produces and helps design interesting digital and cross-platform experiences. She has been working on projects where the internet, high culture, games and 'old' media fight like excitable kittens in a sack since 2000. She enjoys collaborative problem solving, and bridging the gaps between creative vision, user needs, experience design and technical implementation. As freelancer she's produced and project managed projects like D-Day: As It Happens http://channel4.com/dday7 and Pepys Road http://www.pepysrd.com/ along with Alternate Reality games, big corporate website re-designs, small R&D projects and culture hack days.

Before this she was a Product Manager for http://www.moo.com/ and spent 8 years doing internet things around drama, comedy and product development at the BBC. She was once billed as the BBC’s Bagpuss expert, was briefly producer of Doctor Who before it was cool again, and she suspects she's one of the few people in the world who has converted a 20 year old corrupted Amiga word processing file in to an ebook, by hand. 9 Diploma – Creative Producing For Digital Platforms Course Handbook 2017 She has a BAFTA and an Emmy on her mantlepiece, next to a bronze statue of an orc riding a wolf she was awarded for playing World of Warcraft for an entire decade.

John Rowe Head of Digital Effects

With 30 years’ experience in film & TV production, post-production and education, from editing to visual effects and film & video production to software development, with a heavy bias towards training applications to post-producers worldwide. John has worked with a broad range of broadcasters (BBC, BskyB, ITV, Channel 4, MTV), most of the major film & TV post facilities and international equipment manufacturers. Since 2003, John and the DFX students have successfully delivered over 350 NFTS film & TV projects, including hundreds of festival and award-winners (including BAFTAs and Oscars).

Peter Dale Co-Head of Documentary

Peter started as a television film editor and directed his first documentary for BBC One in 1980. He went on to produce and direct documentaries at the BBC for the next 18 years. In 1998 he went to Channel 4 to become Head of Documentaries where he took the opportunity to commission a good number of NFTS graduates, including Kim Longinotto, Nick Broomfield and Molly Dineen. In 2005 he conceived and launched More4, Channel 4’s third digital channel. And in September 2008 set up his own independent production company, Rare Day, dedicated to producing quality documentary and drama for broadcasters and other distributors.

Dick Fontaine Co-Head of Documentary

Dick has directed over forty films for television and the independent media, has recently had retrospectives in New York, Paris, Barcelona and Sao Paulo and was nominated last year for a Grierson Award for his latest film.

Chris Auty Head of Producing

Chris Auty read English at King’s College Cambridge before becoming film editor of Time Out, a contributor to the Guardian and the BBC, and European Editor of The Hollywood Reporter.

After seven years as a film journalist he launched a start-up UK film distribution company, before also acquiring and re-launching two of Britain’s best-known art house cinemas (the Gate in London, and Cameo in Edinburgh) and co-financing and selling Peter Greenaway’s The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover around the world.

He then became Managing Director of Jeremy Thomas’ production company RPC (1991-1999) and served as a producer on numerous films (Stealing Beauty, Blood and Wine, Crash), as well as creating the company’s international sales offshoot, Hanway Films, which has gone on to become a leading player in international film sales. During this period he was heavily involved in the financing, world sales, and US/UK release deals and marketing strategy (both with US majors and leading independents) for all of the RPC output.

In 1998, following his role in the Film Policy Review Group, he was appointed a founder Board Member of the UK Film Council (whose functions were merged into the BFI in 2011).

In 1999 he left RPC to became ceo of the Virgin-backed film finance company The Film Consortium, where he executive produced many of the 20+ films financed by the company (including BAFTA-winning My Summer of Love, Berlin Golden Bear winner In This World, and Cannes competitor 24 Hour Party People). He led the business to create the publicly listed Works Media Group plc. At The Works he developed a significant international sales business, and a successful new UK distribution business underpinned by a DVD output deal with Universal. Chris remained on the board of The Works until the spring of 2011, at which time the lead shareholder bought the company back into private ownership.

During 2009-2010 Chris also worked extensively on developing an online distribution business around the Raindance Film Festival and sister organisation BIFA (British Independent Film Awards). He is the chairman of Raindance.tv and has sat on the advisory board of the BIFA awards since inception.

In 2010 Chris struck a financing deal with two leading entrepreneurs from the green technology sector, to develop film projects - including a big-budget thriller entitled The Gunseller, from the novel by Hugh Laurie; and a low budget comedy entitled Being Frank.

Chris was appointed head of the producing department at the UK’s NFTS (National Film and TV School) in January 2011. He also sits on the governing board of the European Film Academy.

David G. Croft Head of Television Entertainment

David G. Croft is an award winning television director who has directed some of the best known entertainment programmes of the last 25 years. He joined the BBC as a Trainee Assistant Producer in 1982 after two years working in documentaries as an assistant film editor. Prior to this he gained an MA in Film & TV Studies from the Royal College of Art, following a BA Honours degree in Sociology from Liverpool University.

He began directing multi-camera studio programmes and outside broadcasts including a wide range of Arts & Entertainment programmes such as Riverside, Whistle Test, Wogan and Acting which he also co-produced with actress and writer Maria Aitken. The first series of Acting included the highly regarded Acting in Film with Michael Caine.

David also specialised in directing rock music - Pop Carnival, Sight and Sound in Concert and major rock events including Live Aid which won a BAFTA, The Prince’s Trust and The Free Nelson Mandela Concert all from Wembley Stadium. David also directed a trilogy of one-hour documentary specials for BBC2 on Bryan Ferry, Mick Jagger and Paul McCartney. His final project for the BBC was to produce and direct the acclaimed music documentary series That Was Then This Is Now.

David went freelance in 1988 and continued to direct and produce a huge range of entertainment programmes. In comedy Jo Brand’s Hot Potatoes, Bremner Bird & Fortune (BAFTA Nomination), It’s Only TV But I Like It, Shooting Stars and Reeves & Mortimer’s Christmas Special (Silver Rose of Montreaux Award) In situation comedy he directed the cult-hit series Give My Head Peace (2000) for BBC Northern Ireland and several episodes of The Baddiel Syndrome (2002) sit-com for Sky.

He also produced and directed all six series of Channel 4’s highly acclaimed action adventure show Crystal Maze (Two BAFTA Nominations) and was also instrumental in developing the format. Other action adventure credits include Shock Treatment for Sky, Crossfire for C4 and Inside Clyde for Disney which was nominated for a Broadcast Award. In the late 90’s he regularly directed Top of the Pops and in July 2000 Michael Flatley’s Feet of Flames in the Olympic Stadium in Hungary before a crowd of 80,000 people

He has directed magic series with Paul Zennon and John Lenehan and the one hour documentary for ITV Extreme Magic Extreme Danger. Documentary drama productions include The Situation Room shot in Washington DC and two full length dramas shot at the Edinburgh Festival, The House with the Green Shutters and Variety.

In 2006 he joined the National Film & Television School as the Head of Department. He continues to direct and recent credits include Style On Trial hosted by Stuart Maconie & Lauren Lavern and the World Cinema Awards 2011 hosted by Jonathan Ross

Caroline Amies Head of Production Design  

Caroline initially followed her passion for theatre and worked for many companies including Hampstead Theatre, Michael Codron, The Young Vic, English National Opera and Royal Opera House doing graphics, scene painting and prop making, while also designing shows on the London Fringe including The Gate, Hull Truck, Royal Court & The Bubble Theatre. She studied History of Art at Warwick University and realizing she was a practitioner she then did post graduate Theatre Design at the Motley School. Since 1983 she has worked mostly designing for film, opting back to theatre to design The Blues Brothers which opened at the Whitehall Theatre the day Beirut hostage, John McCarthy was released.

Her film credits include In the Name of the Father, Carrington, The Secret Agent, Land Girls, Last September, Ladies in Lavender, Copying Beethoven. She is currently in early pre-production on a film version of Miss Julie

Brian Ward Head of Screenwriting

Born in Glasgow, Brian studied drawing and painting at Glasgow School of Art, then writing and directing at the NFTS, and between 1984 and ‘94 directed more than 60 music videos for artists as diverse as Sade, AC/DC, Art Garfunkel, The Alarm and The Pretenders

With many years’ experience as a screenwriter in film and TV, his credits include: The Interpreter, starring Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn, directed by the late Sydney Pollack; Death Defying Acts, starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Guy Pearce and Saoirse Ronan; Tabloid, starring Matthew Rhys, John Hurt, David Soul and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio; and the award-winning Shoebox Zoo, a CGI/live-action BBC TV series starring Peter Mullan, Jason Connery and the voice talents of Alan Cumming, Simon Callow, Siobhan Redmond & Rik Mayall.

His recent screenplays include: Comrades in Arms, a Vietnam-set action thriller; Red, White & Blue, the epic story of a Native American prodigal son; Christmas Lights, an animated musical; Little Lucky, a modern fairytale; Angel of Leningrad, a metaphysical thriller; and a live-action/CGI TV series, Kingdom of the Wolves.

He’s just completed a rewrite on My Camino, a Canadian/Spanish co-pro based on Sue Kenney’s best-seller, is adapting A Kind of Eden by Amanda Smyth, and writing TV pilot Playing With Fire. He’s in development with King of Diamonds, a family saga about the diamond business in 1960’s London, written with longtime collaborator Martin Stellman (Quadrophenia, Defense of the Realm) for Daybreak producers David Aukin and Hal Vogel and Ingenious Finance.

Brian himself is attached to direct Indian Summer, from his own script, starring Sean Bean, Ashley Jensen and Chaske Spencer, which shoots in Scotland in 2015. He is Executive Producer on Beating the Drum, in development with BBC Films and Creative Scotland, is currently writing 9 Lives, a psychological thriller, and developing Rewind, a thriller set at the Cannes Film Festival.

Senior visiting tutor at the NFTS since 2005, he has also a taught at the London International and Met Film Schools, the Polish National Film School, the Netherlands Film Academy, the Univsitat Ramon Llul in Barcelona and the German Film & Television Academy in Berlin. In addition, he has been a mentor on the Passion to Market and ScripTeast pan-European script development programmes.

Sandra Hebron Head of Screen Arts

Sandra Hebron has worked in independent film since the late 1980s, with roles in funding, production, theatrical exhibition and festivals, Key roles include those of Cinemas Director at Manchester Cornerhouse (1991-1997), and Head of Festivals at the British Film Institute/Artistic Director of the London Film Festival (2003-2011). She has also programmed and worked in an advisory capacity for a range of other UK and international festivals, including the Rome International Film Festival (2012-2014). She is currently providing programming and development advice to emerging festivals in China.

Her other work includes writing and broadcasting about  films and the wider culture for a range of outlets, including BBC radio (The Film Programme, Nightwaves, Front Row) and Sight & Sound. She hosts industry debates, masterclasses and Q&As with contemporary British and international filmmakers for organisations such as BAFTA, The British Council, Curzon Cinemas, Picturehouse Cinemas and Everyman. She has been a guest lecturer at The London Film School, the Met Film School, Oxford Brookes University and Birmingham City University, and delivered papers and keynote speeches for agencies including Europa Cinema, Creative Skillset and the International Film Festival Forum.

She has been an advisory board member for several film and cultural organisations including Lux Artists Moving Image, where she was Chair between 2003-2007 . She is an industry mentor with Guiding Lights, and a qualified counsellor. She has served on international film festival juries in San Sebastian, Istanbul and Nashville, as well as juries for BAFTA, BIFA and Rushes Short Film Festival. She has honorary doctorates from Edge Hill University and Oxford Brookes University, was awarded the Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et de Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture in 2010, and in 2012 was the recipient of the British Independent Film Awards Special Jury Prize for services to independent cinema.

Bex Hopkins Head of Production Management for Film & TV

Having started out as a runner in 1999, Bex then worked as assistant producer on a variety of television programmes including cookery shows, documentaries, sport and outside broadcast productions. She moved her way up the production ladder on commercials and award winning short films to production manager and producer. Her credits include the Turner Classic Movie winner and BAFTA nominated Nits, TCM Specially Commended film Cross My Heart, BAFTA nominated short film Lucky and feature film Mad, Sad & Bad which premiered at EIFF 2009. Bex became the Production Management course tutor in January 2010 and Head of Production Management in September 2013.

Simon Clark Head of Production Sound

Simon Clark is a BAFTA-winning and RTS-nominated Sound Recordist whose impressive work in over 25 years in the field includes credits on Wolf Hall, Mr. Selfridge, Secret State, Line of Duty, Skins, and Waking The Dead.