U.K. Film Council boss steps down

John Woodward to leave in early November

LONDON -- John Woodward said Monday he is standing down as the U.K. Film Council's CEO after over a decade at the helm.

Woodward's exit comes as the organization begins talks with the British government about the future support structures for U.K. film in the wake of the decision in July this year to shut down the U.K. Film Council by 2012.

Woodward said he will leave in "early November" this year and "will announce his future plans in due course."

Woodward said: "By choosing to make my position clear now, I can be objective and unconflicted throughout that process [of talking to the government]. It should then, rightly, be for others to take the new system forward and write the next chapter for U.K. film."

Woodward said he had enjoyed every minute of his 10 year-plus tenure "up until 5.35pm on 24 July this year," when he learned of the government's decision to close the Council.

U.K. Film Council chairman Tim Bevan, accepting Woodward's exit, said: "In the weeks ahead, John, the Board and I will continue to stress the need for the key functions and expertise that currently sit inside the U.K. Film Council to be retained in one coherent structure."

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport is expected to set out it plans for the support structures for film sometime in October.

Tim Cagney, currently U.K. Partnerships chief at the U.K. Film Council, will assume the role of managing director, working with COO Alan Bushell and the U.K.FC's senior management team to transition the U.K. Film Council into the new support system over the coming months.