Course Tutors

The following are some of the regular tutors for the MA Filmmaking course. There are also a wide range of visiting lecturers, guest speakers and panellists.

Roger Hyams


Roger is on his third career. Having worked as an actor for twelve years with some of the UK's most prestigious theatre companies (including the RSC and The Traverse), he moved into television drama development at the BBC. There he worked with Tessa Ross (now Head of Film Four) developing series, serials and features such as Patrick Keiller's ROBINSON IN SPACE and the Amber Collective's THE SCAR.

He left the BBC to become Head of Drama Development at TalkBack Productions, and then made the shift to writing his own work. He is currently working on a feature screenplay and a novel. He has written the original book and lyrics for a musical, CARNIVAL OF THE ANIMALS, which will open at the Riverside Studios in July 2013. He is about to complete the follow-up to his short film SUNDAY. SUNDAY, featuring a voice-over by Bill Nighy, was screened for an extended run at the Renoir Cinema in London, and was selected for the 2010 London Short Film Festival. In 2012 he was script editor for KELLY + VICTOR.

Roger continues to work as a freelance script consultant and is a visiting tutor on the London Film School's MA Screenwriting and MA Filmmaking programmes.

Helena Appio


Helena Appio is an award winning freelance director/producer and has had a successful career in television, including 18 years at the BBC where she became a Commissioning Executive in BBC Factual Entertainment and Documentaries.  

Helena has directed a wide variety of films and programmes including Modern Times, 40 Minutes, Inside Story, Picture This and Children's Hospital amongst others. She also runs her own production company and has made films for C4 and The Arts Council.  

As Commissioning Executive for Docs and Contemporary Factual, Helena has been commissioned and worked as Executive Producer on many series including, Changing Rooms, Ground Force, The Reclaimers, Get A New Life, Dealing With Dickenson and The Queens Cavalry.  

She has extensive experience in television, ranging from researching, programme making, directing and executive producing, as well as holding positions as a senior lecturer, professional trainer and coach.

Jamie Leonard

Production Designer

Jamie Leonard studied 3D Design, discovered theatre, worked at the Royal Court Theatre and Glyndebourne Opera, before studying at the Motley Theatre Design Course. He went on to the Royal College of Art, and has since designed extensively for films and commercials. Ascendancy won the Golden Bear in Berlin, and he continued to design, often with first time directors, experimental and main-stream films, collaborating with director Alan Clarke on Made in Britain, designing Neil Jordan’s Mona Lisa, and Laughterhouse with Richard Eyre.

Creating for film and television has also fed his passion for music and travel. He designed Alan Clarke’s unorthodox musical Billy the Kid… and Harry Hook’s African story, The Kitchen Toto. Designing commercials has taken him round the World. With Harry Hook he also designed Lord of the Flies. Two period films followed, We Think the World of You, and Tom & Viv. His first film in Ireland was Fools of Fortune, with Pat O’Connor, then working once more with Mike Newell on Into the West.  

Also two further Irish projects - Suri Krishnama’s A Man of No Importance and Divine Rapture; and in Scotland - Complicity, with Gavin Millar. His work on Jens Jonsson’s short A Changed Man led him to design Duane Hopkins’s debut feature, Better Things. His latest projects were Desert Flower and artist Gillian Wearing’s feature debut Self Made.

Jamie Leonard's website

Christie Jennings


Christie trained as an actress at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and has had a varied career in theatre and television. For the last ten years she has worked in the corporate sector as a communication skills trainer. She has had extensive experience as a facilitator, role player and coach working on a huge range of development programmes in UK, Europe and USA. She co-founded Frank Associates in 2007 with John Hoggarth.

Christie is also a theatre director. In 2008 she was Associate Director on the national tour of Crown Matrimonial starring Patricia Routledge. She is an Associate Artist of the National Youth Theatre and has directed several productions for the company as well as running courses and workshops. She is part of the Shakespeare for Schools Project developed by the National Theatre.

Jim Gillespie


Jim Gillespie was born in Scotland. He directed numerous documentaries and television dramas in the UK before writing and directing his acclaimed short JOYRIDE. This brought him to the attention of Hollywood where his debut feature I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER opened in the number one slot and stayed in that position for three consecutive weeks. The film went on to enormous financial success throughout the rest of the world and spawned two sequels. He has directed features for Universal, Dimension and a television pilot for Jerry Bruckheimer Television.

The combined world-wide revenue for his three feature films is in excess of $300 million. He is currently in early preparation on Clever for Crab Apple Films and Cheyenne Enterprises. 

View Jim Gillespie on IMDb

Neil Hunter


Neil Hunter has co-written and directed three feature films: BOYFRIENDS, THE LAWLESS HEART and SPARKLE. Based on improvisation, they have won numerous awards and wide distribution. He is currently developing an adaptation of WOMAN’S WORLD, a graphic novel by Graham Rawle, and pursing projects with several co-writers. He has also taught screenwriting for the Arvon Foundation, and mentored for Moonstone.

View Neil Hunter on IMDb

Paul Kirby

Production Designer

Paul Kirby graduated in Production Design from The National Film and Television School in London. He started his film career working on Sir Richard Attenborough’s CHAPLIN starring Robert Downey Jr. Working on over thirty film projects, Paul has progressed through the art department, working on such films as SHADOWLANDS, THE FIFTH ELEMENT, and three BOND movies. 

Kirby was Art Director on BATMAN BEGINS, PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, THE FOUR FEATHERS, and Captain America. He has been Production Designer on Lee Tamahori’s THE DEVIL’S DOUBLE, and CAPTAIN PHILLIPS, the Paul Greengrass film starring Tom Hanks.

Paul has earned three nominations for The Art Director’s Guild in ‘Excellence in Production Design’ for his work on BATMAND BEGINS, PHANTOM OF THE OPERA and Captain America.

Paul Kirby's website

Michael Houldey

Documentary Producer

Michael is an experienced television series producer, producer and director whose credits include prime time documentary series and single documentary, drama, music and arts films. He has always worked as a freelance, has run his own independent company and as series producer and mentor he has encouraged and nurtured the work of young film makers. Michael’s work has been recognised through the Royal Television Society award, three BAFTA nominations and other awards. He has also worked as a visiting lecturer at NFTS, DV Talent and BBC Elstree.

Alice Normington

Production Designer

Graduated with First Class Honours Degree in Theatre Design, from the Wimbledon School of Art, Alice Normington has worked in films across the globe. Her extensive production design portfolio spans not only film but television, theatre and commercials. Feature and television titles include NOWHERE BOY, LOVE AND OTHER DISASTERS, THE SECRET WORLD OF MICHAEL FRY and GREAT EXPECTATIONS as well as companies such as L’Oreal, Boots, BBC, Tesco and H&M to name a few.

Alice Normington's website

Folasade Oyeleye

Editing Consultant

Folasade Oyeleye is an editor with a background in feature films and television drama and documentaries.  Her feature credits include Loop and Boogie Woogie and for television CasualtyMissing and Hollyoaks. She has been involved in film training at the LFS, NFTS, LCC and UCA and most recently the Central Film school. She was also part of the film industry panel for Creative Skillset is passionate about editing and passing on those skills she has learned over the years.

Graham Walker

Editing Consultant

A graduate of the London Film School and professional film editor with many years experience in the Film and TV industry. Graham Walker has been a supervising drama editor with the BBC for several years, editing many of their classic series: Shoestring, Bergerac, Miss Marple etc.

He has also worked on a freelance basis since the 90's with feature films and TV drama in Hollywood for HBO, Orion, Fox, Paramount etc. and in the UK for Rank, Channel 4, ITV, Carlton, Anglia, BBC.

Graham has, over a  5 year period, worked as a visiting lecturer and as Head of Editing at The National Film and Television School.

View Graham Walker on IMDb

Terry Hopkins

Head of Cinematography

Terry is a member of the International Cinematographers Guild and began shooting 16mm documentaries in New York in the late 1970s. His work appeared on America's PBS, Britain's BBC and Channel 4. The trend toward incorporating dramatic recreations into documentaries provided Terry with a means of linking his love of documentaries with lighting for drama. This led to his work as Camera Operator and 2nd unit DP on 35mm feature films.
Three programmes or series Terry has filmed have won Emmy Awards and two have been nominated for Academy Awards (Oscars). His last project before turning to full-time teaching was a documentary on The Rolling Stones directed by Michael Apted, a two-camera shoot on which he worked with Seamus McGarvey ASC, BSC.

Les Blair

Term Three and Five Course Tutor

After a degree in Economics and a spell as an advertising copywriter Les Blair enrolled as a student at the London Film School. In 1969 he spent six months in Prague as an exchange student at FAMU where he made a short documentary about life under the Soviet bloc invasion which was shown by the BBC before being snatched back by the Czech authorities. On returning to London he produced and edited Mike Leigh’s first film Bleak Moments before launching his own career as a director with a string of films made for television which he wrote and directed after extended improvised rehearsal with the actors. He also directed the work of other writers, most notoriously G.F.Newman’s Law and Order which secured a place in television history with its portrayal of endemic corruption in the police and judicial system. His TV films News Hounds and The Accountant both won BAFTA’s for Best Single Drama. He has written and directed feature films for the Cinema including Bad Behaviour which won the Evening Standard Peter Sellers award for comedy. His work for the theatre includes Becket’s Waiting for Godot and two plays of his own.

View Les Blair on IMDb

Wojciech Wrzesniewski

Acting Head of Sound Department

Studied Electrical Engineering, after graduating worked for a number of years as a service engineer and industrial product designer. Sound recordist on a number of factual, educational and documentary strands for BBC and Channel 4 such as Inside Tracks, On the Record, Panorama, Breaking the Fear (independent feature) and shorts You're In There Ltd. and Konfident.

Richard Kwietniowski

Writer-Director and LFS 6th Term Tutor

Writer-director, born in London to Anglo-Polish parents. After studying literature then film at University of Kent at Canterbury, became Visiting Research Scholar in Film at University of California at Berkeley before returning to the UK to work in the independent film sector and higher education. Short films including Alfalfa and Flames of Passion were distributed internationally. Work as a director for British TV received Royal Television Society and D&AD (Gold and Best of Year) awards and a Prix Italia nomination. Feature-films Love and Death on Long Island (John Hurt and Jason Priestley), and Owning Mahowny (Philip Seymour Hoffman and Minnie Driver) both made Best of Year critics’ lists. Awards include prizes from Cannes Film Festival, Berlin Film Festival, New York Film Critics Circle, US National Board of Review, and BAFTA. He teaches directing, screenwriting and acting-to-camera at a range of institutions in the UK and beyond, and has contributed to many European initiatives in feature film development. His LFS directing workshop for film students and actors has just celebrated its 300th edition. His name is easier to pronounce than it looks: Kfee-etnee- ov-skee.