The London Film School (LFS) has appointed Gisli Snaer as it new School Director with immediate effect.

Filmmaker and teacher Snaer joined LFS in 2016 as Head of Studies from the Puttnam School of Film, LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore. His filmmaker credits include Greenland-set drama Ikíngut (2000) which played at Flanders International Film Festival and Chicago International Children’s Film Festival and 1995 family-drama Benjamin, The Dove.

A graduate of French film school La Fémis in Paris, Snaer is a member of the European Film Academy, the Royal Television Society, the Directors Guild of Iceland, and the Federation of European Film Directors. His academic research interests include novel-to-screen adaptation, ambiguity and subtext in visual media and the evolution of story, storymaking and storytelling.

Greg Dyke, the former Director General of the BBC, replaced director Mike Leigh as Chairman of the school earlier this year. It remains a time of flux at the prestigious venue, whose alumni include Ridley Scott, Michael Mann, Duncan Jones, Tak Fujimoto and Leigh himself. The LFS, founded in 1956, has been trying to relocate from its Covent Garden home for some time.

Former school director Jane Roscoe left the institution last summer after a turbulent three-year stint which included curriculum modernisation but also pockets of agitation among students frustrated by a high turnover of staff. Last year saw the publication of multiple online petitions from disgruntled alumni over conditions at the school.

Commenting on his appointment, Snaer said: “I am tremendously honoured to be appointed and delighted to lead the superb team of the UK’s first film school. LFS benefits from a diverse filmmaking community with an international reputation. The School has always been proud of its students and wants to play a more significant part in the UK with support from industry and government. I look forward to building on this as LFS develops, working with staff and students to achieve further success regionally, nationally and internationally.”

Dyke added: “I am delighted that Gisli has taken on the role of Director of the London Film School. He is an outstanding film maker and teacher and has done a great job in the 10 months he has been Acting Director of the School. This is an exciting time of change for the School and Gisli is the ideal person to lead that change.”