Mike Leigh has launched a £7 million ($14 million) appeal to raise funds for the expansion of the London Film School.
Leigh, an alumnus of the school, is chairman of the governors. The appeal is backed by 13 patrons of the school, including producers Jeremy Thomas and Iain Smith, actress Tilda Swinton and director Franc Roddam.
The money will be used to create a new site for the school in London’s West End. It has occupied its current premises in Covent Garden for the past 40 years.
Leigh commented, “The London Film School is going to create a permanent center, which will bring together film students, graduates, industry professionals and others who are generally passionate about film culture from all over the world.”
LFS director Ben Gibson said, “In tune with the school’s spirit of innovation, we are seeking not only to build a better home but also to re-invent what film school can be. Yes, we want a safe place for experiment by people on full-time postgraduate degrees, as we’ve always had. But we also want to house all that in a space which welcomes enthusiasts for screenings and presentations, working craft professionals taking workshops or organizing meetings.”