Ben Roberts has been appointed Chief Executive of the BFI. The appointment was made by BFI Chair Josh Berger on behalf of the BFI’s Board of Governors.
Roberts will lead the BFI’s next five year strategic plan (2022- 2027) and build on the BFI’s relationships with the wider screen industries, promoting diversity and inclusion across the organisation, broadening the BFI’s audience and relationships with talent, and developing the BFI’s financial sustainability, brand and commercial strength. He starts his role in mid-February 2020.
Since joining the BFI as Director of the BFI Film Fund in 2012, then promoted to Deputy CEO in October 2018, he has been one of the key architects in launching the BFI Diversity Standards, devised a new template for inclusive training with Lucasfilm and Disney for the BFI Film Academy, and has been instrumental in setting inclusion targets across all BFI National Lottery funding.
He has helmed the BFI NETWORK UK-wide talent development programme, developed the BFI’s Production, Development and Audience Funds and developed the BFI Film Audience Network. In the last year he also launched the new Government backed £57m Young Audiences Content Fund aimed at delivering new original UK television content for young audiences.
BFI Chair Josh Berger said “I’m absolutely thrilled to appoint Ben Roberts, on behalf of the BFI Board, as the BFI’s new Chief Executive. Ben is a rare talent, with broad experience and understanding of the complexities of our screen industries; from the cultural landscape and developing new voices to growing UK independent film; from the challenges facing the UK film industry to what drives the UK’s success as a global destination for filmmakers. Ben is a passionate advocate for inclusion and has already done much to steer our industry towards better representation and accessibility. Going forward, the BFI has an important role in shaping the exciting cultural and commercial opportunities presented by the broader screen industries and Ben is the person to lead this.
I want to thank Amanda Nevill for her brilliant 17 years transforming the BFI into the great organisation it has become and I’m delighted to find someone who can build on Amanda’s incredible legacy and take us to even greater heights in the future.”
Culture Secretary Nicky Morgan said: "Ben Roberts will do an incredible job as the BFI’s new Chief Executive, building on the fantastic achievements of Amanda Nevill, and will continue to take the organisation from strength to strength. I look forward to working with him to ensure the ongoing success of the British film industry, with a renewed focus on skills, diversity and inclusion."
Ben Roberts, Chief Executive, BFI said “I’m eternally grateful to Amanda for bringing me into the BFI, and to Josh and the board for supporting my vision for its future. Film is egalitarian, and I want everyone to see the BFI as their home, to see themselves in our programmes, and feel welcome in our industry. We need all the diversity of voice, thought and talent to maximise the potential of the UK’s growing screen industries. My 22 year old self used the BFI library to help me find my first job in film, and so my 44 year old self is immensely proud to lead our brilliant teams through this next chapter.”
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