Helena Bonham Carter, Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan Make List of Top 50 Female British Power Players

Helena Bonham Carter
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“I’m so used to losing that it feels slightly strange to win. It feels very nice actually -- but children, if you’re listening, it’s not about the winning.”

No place for several high-profile talent such as Emma Watson, Emily Blunt or Rachel Weisz on list dominated by high-powered execs.

LONDON – A list of the 50 female British female power players boasts 11 names from front of camera including Helena Bonham Carter, Keira Knightley, Carey Mulligan, Kate Winslet, Maggie Smith and Tilda Swinton.

Also making the list in the talent category is Sky News correspondent Alex Crawford, the latest James Bond girl Naomie Harris, comedian and tv writer Miranda Hart, TV presenter, writer and comedian Sue Perkins and TV journalist and presenter Kirsty Wark.

Emma Watson, best known for playing Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies, and recently cast to star in Sofia Coppola’s latest pictureThe Bling Ring, is arguably one of the few glaring omissions from a list of the top 50 most powerful British women working in film and television.

And there is also no room for actress Kate Beckinsale, Emily Watson, Rachel Weisz, Gemma Arterton, Anna Friel, Rosamund Pike or Emily Blunt on the list.

Britain’s Women in Film and TV industry organization published the list as part of International Women’s Day Thursday March 8 with the aim of celebrating women who have impacted the film and tv industries in the U.K.

To get on the list, a spokesperson for WFTV said the list, draw up with the help of two U.K. trade publications Broadcast and Screen International, included such elements as power to get a project greenlit, impact on the viewing habits of the public in the U.K. and abroad, influence on broadcast or film culture, and even financial success.

The list of 50 names places 21 executives, 14 producers/directors and four screenwriters alongside the 11 names from in front of the camera.

From the executives, Christine Langan, creative director of BBC Films, Channel 4 film and drama chief Tessa Ross, Elisabeth Murdoch founder & chief executive, Shine Group and Denise O'Donaghue, managing director, ITV Studios all appear on the list having also made it onto THR’s own list of international female power players last year.

BBC executives occupy five of the 50 spots with Caroline Thomson, chief executive officer, Helen Boaden, head of BBC News, BBC2 controller Janice Hadlow, Jana Bennett, president BBC Worldwide networks and global iPlayer appearing on the list alongside the Beeb’s Langan.

Film producers including Nira Park, Debra Hayward, Elizabeth Karlsen and Alison Owen also secure a spot alongside filmmakers Andrea Arnold (Wuthering Heights) and Phyllida Lloyd (The Iron Lady).

Full list:

U.K. Women in Film and Television Top 50 Powerlist 2012


Elaine Bedell, director of comedy and entertainment ITV
Jana Bennett, president of worldwide networks and global iPlayer, BBC Worldwide
Amanda Berry, chief executive officer, Bafta
Helen Boaden, director, BBC News
Barbara Broccoli, producer, EON Productions
Dinah Caine, chief executive officer, Skillset
Eileen Gallagher, chief executive, Shed Productions
Sara Geater, chief executive officer, Freemantle Media UK
Janice Hadlow, controller, BBC2
Jay Hunt, chief creative officer, C4
Christine Langan, creative director, BBC Films
Lucy Lumsden, head of comedy, Sky
Laura Mackie, director of drama, ITV
Elisabeth Murdoch founder & chief executive, Shine Group
Amanda Nevill, chief executive officer, BFI
Denise O'Donaghue, managing director, ITV Studios
Jane Root, chief executive, Nutopia
Tessa Ross, controller, Film 4 and C4 Drama
Lisbeth Savill, head of Film & TV, Olswang
Caroline Thomson chief operating officer, BBC
Sophie Turner Laing, managing director of Entertainment & News, Sky

Producers/ directors

Andrea Arnold, film director – Wuthering Heights
Vanessa Berlowitz, series producer, Frozen Planet, BBC Natural History Unit
SJ Clarkson, TV director – Dexter
Finola Dwyer Film Producer – Quartet (post-production)
Debra Hayward, film producer, founder — Monumental Pictures
Elizabeth Karlsen, film producer – Great Expectations, Byzantium (both in post-production)
Phyllida Lloyd, film director – The Iron Lady
Alison Owen Producer (Ruby Films) – Jane Eyre
Nira Park Producer (Big Talk Productions) – Attack the Block
Norma Percy, TV documentary producer – Putin, Russia and the West
Lynne Ramsay, film director – We Need to Talk About Kevin
Moira Ross, TV producer – Head of Entertainment, Wall to Wall
Nicola Shindler, founder (Red Productions), executive producer – Scott and Bailey, Exile, Bedlam
Sue Vertue, producer (Hartswood Films) — Sherlock


Helena Bonham Carter, actress
Alex Crawford, Sky News correspondent
Naomie Harris, actress
Miranda Hart, actress/performer
Keira Knightley, actress
Carey Mulligan, actress
Sue Perkins, TV presenter
Dame Maggie Smith, actress
Tilda Swinton, actress
Kirsty Wark, journalist/ TV presenter
Kate Winslet, actress


Moira Buffini, writer – Jane Eyre, Byzantium (post-production)
Jane Goldman, writer – The Woman in Black
Abi Morgan, writer – Shame, The Iron Lady
Heidi Thomas, writer – Upstairs Downstairs