Coming To America: BAFTA LA Expands Newcomers Program To International Talent & Biz

BAFTA Film Awards
Thomas Alexander/BAFTA/REX/Shutterstock

BAFTA LA is expanding its longstanding Newcomers Program for Brit arrivals in the city to include talent and industry professionals from international territories.

In its first year of expansion the support program will welcome professionals from Poland, South Africa, Australia, Israel, Korea, France, Turkey and Hong Kong. A full list of participants can be found below.

Each participant receives access to BAFTA membership events and initiatives aimed at supporting career development and the transition to living and working in the U.S.

This year’s 55 participants include 19 actors, 15 directors, nine producers, three screenwriters, two art directors, two executives, two composers, one cinematographer, one production designer, one agent and one publicist.

“As BAFTA extends its helping hand globally, we are thrilled that after 10 successful years supporting British talent in Los Angeles, the Newcomers Program now expands to include international talent,” said New Talent Committee Chairs, Sandro Monetti and Peter Morris.

“As our industry becomes increasingly global, it is more vital than ever that emerging talent has access to an international network of peers and mentors. We hope to provide just that to these Newcomers in Los Angeles.”


  1. Waseem Abbas, Actor
  2. Sheena Bhattessa, Actor
  3. Lucian Collier, Actor
  4. Sasha Collington, Director
  5. Pete Cooksley, Producer
  6. Leo Draper, VP International Creative Advertising
  7. Michael Driscoll, Director
  8. Tina Gharavi, Director
  9. Denise Hoey, Actor
  10. Mark Jackson, Actor
  11. Allison McGourty, Screenwriter, Producer
  12. Nita Mistry, Actor
  13. Rochelle Neil, Actor
  14. Mark Prendergast, Actor
  15. Monroe Robertson, Actor, Producer, Director
  16. David Saunders, Composer
  17. Sam Lucas Smith, Actor, Screenwriter (Correction: Smith is in fact from Ireland)
  18. Hanna Stanbridge, Actor, Screenwriter
  19. Sammy Sultan, Screenwriter, Director
  20. Catherine Taylor, Director
  21. Samuel Washington, Director, Screenwriter


  1. Felicity Abbott, Production Designer – Australia
  2. Asligul Armagan, Screenwriter, Director – Turkey
  3. Christel Chaudet, Video Producer – France
  4. Leah de Niese, Actor – Australia
  5. Daniel Jansen, Segment Producer – South Africa
  6. Muriel Naim, Director – Israel
  7. Sarah Oh, Producer – South Korea
  8. Angie Polkovich, Director, Screenwriter – Poland
  9. Wan-Yi Sweeting, Creative Accounts Executive at Tongal – Hong Kong
  10. Roi Vissel, Cinematographer – Israel


  1. Abby Ajayi, Screenwriter
  2. Sisi Cronin, Publicist
  3. Nicholas Horton, Development Producer
  4. Louise Houghton, TV Presenter, Journalist, Actress
  5. Kitty Kaletsky, Producer
  6. Sohm Kapila, Actor
  7. Peter Lam, Composer
  8. Adam Linzey, Director
  9. Luca Malacrino, Actor
  10. James McNamara, Screenwriter
  11. Alicia Sadler, Filmmaker, Artist
  12. Fagun Thakrar, Actor, Director, Producer
  13. Iesh Thapar, Director
  14. Emma Weston, Art Director


  1. Andy Blackburn, Director
  2. Marcus Chan, Screenwriter, Director
  3. Menik Gooneratne, Actor, Screenwriter
  4. Ben Gutteridge, Screenwriter, Director
  5. Heather Harris, Director
  6. Ruaraidh Hunter, Agent
  7. James Longman, Producer
  8. Alex Polunin, Producer
  9. Nicola Posener, Actor
  10. Emma West, Actor

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