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The National Youth Film Academy (NYFA) have announced their Industry Advisory Board for 2020 ahead of its annual Emerging Brits Industry Showcase, taking place at the ODEON BFI IMAX on Wednesday 5th February 2020.

Actor Simon Bird (The Inbetweeners, Friday Night Dinner), Biannca Searle (Senior Sales Manager at Odeon Cinema), Matt Smith (Head of Distribution at Lionsgate Films) and Raindance Film Festival founder Elliot Grove are among those who have joined the NYFA board to support and elevate the opportunities the academy provides for young film members through their Emerging Brits programme and year round SetReady courses.

The full list of Advisory Board members for 2020 has been announced as:

  • Biannca Searle, Senior Sales Manager – Odeon Cinema

  • Grace Minns, Actor – National Youth Film Academy Student Board Rep.

  • John Brennan, CEO – ProCam

  • Joseph Archer, Filmmaker – National Youth Film Academy Student Board Rep.

  • Matt Smith, Head of Distribution – Lionsgate Films

  • Nathan Hannawin, Tutor – National Youth Film Academy

  • Rob Earnshaw, Founder – National Youth Film Academy

  • Simon Bird, Actor

  • Sue Jones, Casting Director & East 15 Drama School Industry Liaison Consultant

  • Susi Figgis, Casting Director

  • Bill Petrie, Agent – BWH Agency

  • Dean Smith, Actor – National Youth Film Academy Alumni

The National Youth Film Academy is bold and inspirational in developing new talent within the film industry. As a globally respected institution that builds career confidence and celebrates success, the National Youth Film Academy aims to locate, nurture and promote new talent by supporting their members through a year-long programme of career development.

Founder and Chief Executive of the National Youth Film Academy Rob Earnshaw said:

“It’s incredibly humbling to have such a strong industry advisory board for this year. The role of the NYFA is to bridge the gap between education and employment for all of our members and this board will absolutely support that objective through their powerful networks within film. We are a fiercely proud industry-led organisation, so all of our actions are accountable to the industry. The board means we have our finger on the pulse and can quickly adapt to the ever-changing nature of the film world. This is a huge step for us. The Emerging Brits Industry Showcase will highlight the opportunities we are creating for the next wave of young talent.”

The Emerging Brits programme launched by the NYFA was created to showcase the next generation of UK film talent between the ages of 16-25. Every three years the NYFA select their ‘Emerging Brits’; the next generation of British actors and filmmakers, supporting them with funding to create a short film which is showcased to industry.

The Emerging Brits Industry Showcase event on 5th February will premiere the work of the academy’s handpicked rising stars in the UK. The exclusive screening will premiere three short films, including Kindred – the latest work from Ali Kurr, the director behind the 2020 This Girl Can campaign – as well as Solvi, directed by Joseph Archer, and Rottweiler, directed by John Powell.


Directed by Joseph Archer, produced by Harry Allmark and written by Jack Price.

Vikings appear on the coast, reopening old wounds and shattering the harmony of the coexisting Christian and Pagan settlers. Will the villagers overcome their differences to save their home? r differences


Directed by John Powell, produced by Thomas Nejad and written by Jordan Gifford.

When Sophia’s boyfriend is released from prison with a violent debt over his head, she is forced to make a choice between love and freedom.


Directed by Ali Kurr, produced by Lissi Simpson-Watt and written by Amelia Simpson.

Upon returning home from a night shift, Alfie discovers his cousins have had a rave at their deceased grandmother’s house.

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