Discover how to be a film critic with our Speakers for Schools panel

15 Nov 2022

4 mins
Both part of a 2022 Film Critics Speakers for Schools session
Both part of a 2022 Film Critics Speakers for Schools session

On Wednesday 2 November 2022, we were delighted to have two leading film critics - Anna Smith and Wendy Ide - join us for our fifth live broadcast in partnership with Speakers for Schools.

It was free to attend, available for all UK secondary schools and was aimed specifically at KS3-5/S1-6. Discover more about the session below and listen out for news on our future Speakers for Schools guests! You can also watch a full recording of the session here.

It was great for the students to get insight into how to organise yourself as a critic, how to analyse and critique film, and to understand the pros & cons of the career/industry.


Both guests shared their experiences of working as a film critic, providing insight and top tips of how to get into the industry. The audience were also able to send their questions over to Anna and Wendy during the Q&A session. 

The event was a huge success, with 26 schools registering and 497 young people attending from across the UK. 

It's always a pleasure to work with Into Film and to speak to the next generation of writers - I really enjoyed hearing their questions. Best of luck to anyone who decides to take the plunge as a film critic!

Film critic, Anna Smith

Anna Smith is a film critic, broadcaster and host of the popular podcast Girls On Film, a fun feminist film show that shines a light on female filmmakers and film critics. Anna is contributor to Deadline Hollywood, Time Out, Metro and The Guardian, and appears regularly on Radio 4, Sky TV and BBC News Channel. Anna is also the former President of the UK Critics' Circle. 

Wendy Ide is a film critic and commentator who writes for The Observer, Screen International and The Financial Times among others. Previously, she served as a film critic for The Times and The Sunday Herald. She programmed the short film strand for the London Film Festival for four years, was a program advisor for Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival and has served on the juries of numerous film festivals around the world. 

If your pupils are keen to put all they learned from Anna and Wendy to the test, our Into Film Festival review writing competition asks them to write 300 words on any film they've seen at this year's Festival. Prizes include £200 of vouchers and the chance to appear on Fun Kids Radio.

Meanwhile, explore our other Speakers for Schools sessions below, which provide crucial insight into the huge range of careers available in the screen industries.

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