LFA Team

LFA Team

Daisy Gili - Joint Principal & Founder

Daisy is from a family of artists, writers and filmmakers, and grew up spending as much time as possible in cinemas, cutting rooms and dubbing theatres. Although a maths graduate, Daisy decided not to pursue a career in numbers but to enter the film & TV industry. She finds that her grounding in mathematical thought, which combines form and pattern with logic, has enhanced her own approach to filmmaking.

After working for four years in production on a leading series for Channel 4, then briefly on Richard Eyre’s film 'Iris', Daisy decided to return to being a student, this time of filmmaking. Unable to find a course that met her expectations and requirements, Daisy co-founded the LFA. In addition to co-running one of the most innovative and dynamic filmmaking schools in the UK, Daisy has produced and directed three short films, including 'The Summer House' (starring Robert Pattinson and Talulah Riley).

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Anna MacDonald - Joint Principal & Founder

Anna keeps the wheels at LFA turning, ensuring that the Academy remains innovative, inspiring and cutting edge. Whether dealing with the Academy’s day-to-day running, business development or the distribution of films made by LFA students, graduates and partners, Anna is always looking for the best ways to grow the work LFA produce. Alongside her role as LFA’s Joint Principal she has produced and executive produced hundreds of motion pictures including 'The Summer House' (starring Robert Pattinson and Talulah Riley, which was no.1 on the iTunes sales charts in UK, USA and Canada and within first 10 in France and Germany on its first day) - list of credits on IMDB.

Anna is the mastermind behind the extraordinary number of special events, masterclasses and educational programmes that LFA conducts at film festivals and schools worldwide.  She was named one of the 30 prominent Londoners with Polish roots featured in the ‘London Creatives: Polish Roots’ exhibition at the Museum of London (October 2009), celebrating the role that Londoners of Polish origin have played in the capital's cultural scene (presented by the Polish Cultural Institute). Before founding LFA she worked as a Creative and Publishing  Consultant.

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Simon Flynn - Vice Principal

Whether you’re looking to specialise in screenwriting, documentary, directing or filmmaking, Simon’s here to help you make the best decisions for your career. As Vice Principal, Simon leads our outstanding Diploma Courses, working closely with the Joint-Principals, tutors and students managing course content and delivery to guide you through your time at LFA.   

Our Diplomas are designed to enable you to find your own voice in a collaborative and nurturing environment. Looking after these very intense and practical programmes, Simon can draw upon his experience of exec producing short films and advising and supporting emerging film talent to help you get to where you want to go.

Simon moved into the film industry working with First Light and Screen West Midlands where he looked after a number of filmmaking initiatives and talent schemes. In his time looking after these schemes, he commissioned and produced a number of award-winning shorts and animation projects as well as nurturing a host of emerging filmmakers who have since progressed to direct and produce successful features and primetime television shows.  In his previous role at Creative England, Simon project managed Film Nation Shorts - a leading filmmaking initiative of the Cultural Olympiad - which encouraged young people aged 16-25 across the UK to make short films, the best of which were screened at venues across London in 2012.

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Lincoln Ascott - Course Leader: Filmmaking Certificate

Lincoln leads our Filmmaking Certificate and will be your point of contact for any questions, queries or requests related to this course. He has a wealth of technical and creative knowledge that he shares with his students to enhance their filmmaking journey. The Filmmaking Certificate provides the perfect launchpad for your career into the film industry, giving you an invaluable grounding in the basic principles of filmmaking.

Lincoln joined LFA following a degree in Fine Art, a postgraduate Diploma in Cinematography and a Masters degree in Cinematography from the National School of Film and Television. He has shot many documentaries and promotional videos and has worked on a range of award-winning shorts. As Director of Photography his first feature film 'Sugar Sugar' won the best newcomer award at the Raindance Film Festival.

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Matthew Wake - Course Leader: Diplomas

As the Coordinator of our multi-disciplinary Diploma Courses, Matthew ensures that you are getting the most out of your time with us at LFA. Matthew works closely alongside the Diploma Course Leader and is a key contact for any student considering the diploma courses making sure you pick the right course for you. His ability to bring his film theory knowledge into the practical environment of the academy to support future filmmakers provides students a great start to their filmmaking career.

Matthew joined us in September 2013 after graduating with a degree in Film and Sociology and an MA in Film Studies. The epitome of a film enthusiast, Matthew avidly consumes a number of films on a weekly basis and is always eager to discuss his recent watches.

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Tom Rowson - Post-Production Leader

As our Post-Production Leader Tom collaborates with LFA students across all of our courses, assisting with the post-production on a range of films. Tom is on hand to give you technical advice and answer any of your questions before, during and post production. He’ll support you through your learning at the Academy, ensuring you’re equipped with the essential skills required to make shooting and editing run smoothly from start to finish.

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Samantha Hazlehurst - Marketing Leader

Samantha is at the helm of LFA’s marketing, keeping the school on the pulse of all things website, online, or social media related.

As our Marketing Leader, Samantha ensures that LFA’s profile remains high and visible. From the website to social media, publicity, events and advertising, Samantha makes sure that the work of the LFA and their students is shared with the world. Promoting our activities, special events and new opportunities, she ensures that you’re always up-to-date with what’s going on at the academy.

Samantha joined us after a number of years in the gallery and museum world and is a passionate film and theatre buff.

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Salome Penteado - Admissions & Front of House Leader

Here to welcome you with a smile as soon as you step through our doors, Salome personifies our vision to provide a personable and friendly experience during your time at the academy. As Admissions and Front of House Leader she is likely to be your first point of contact with the LFA, whether on the phone, by email or in person. Salome will be on hand to answer any questions and point you in the right direction to find a course that suits your ambitions. 

Salome has come to us from a international school where she supported and advised hundreds of students on how to reach their dreams. Having always been a film enthusiast, she has joined LFA to return to her early passion for cinema and to continue on her journey of helping even more students achieve their goals.

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Anna Torvaldsen - Admissions & Short Course Coordinator

Here to welcome you with a smile as soon as you step through our doors, Anna personifies our vision to provide a personable and friendly experience during your time at the academy. As Admissions and Front of House Coordinator she is likely to be your first point of contact with the LFA, whether through phone, email or in-person enquiry. Anna is on hand to answer any questions and point you in the right direction to find a course that suits your ambitions. 

She’s always happy to meet with prospective students and provide them with a guided tour to find out everything the academy has to offer. Anna is as passionate about your time here as her own, and would love to hear all about your activities and projects.

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Joanna Bateson-Hill - Course and Academy Administrator

Assisting Matthew Wake in the Diploma office, Joanna ensures that the Diplomas run as smoothly as possible. Offering academic and administrative assistance, Joanna ensures that you are well supported and cared for during your time at LFA.  With a degree in Theatre and Performance from Leeds University, Joanna is passionate about everything performance based whether onstage or behind a camera. In her spare time she can often be found at Peckham Plex Cinema or in the standing pit at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre.  


Before joining LFA Joanna worked in television and film on a freelance basis. Her favourite projects include Channel 4’s ‘Music Nation’ and styling an advert for NikeXFootball. 

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Alastair Train - Equipment Coordinator

Alastair is a former diploma graduate from the London Film Academy, since finishing the course Alastair has been working as a freelance filmmaking making video commercials for various companies, along with recently writing and directing his own project “Osteopathy”, he returns to LFA to offer support and guidance to the newer diplomas. 



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