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About the Durham BFI Partnership

The Durham University BFI (British Film Institute) partnership is a creative collaboration giving students the unique opportunity to learn from industry experts and gain access to landmark independent films on the BFI Player streaming service.

The partnership began in late 2021 and has enjoyed great success in BFI Careers Week, student placements at the BFI, support for Durham Film Festival, Chinese Film Week and Queer Film Week, and the Year Abroad film competition. Since its inception the range of activities have grown to include research talks, community events and a university wide student film making competition.
Durham BFI Partnership
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BFI Player

The BFI is the UK’s leading organisation for film and the moving image and is home to the world’s largest film and television archive. As part of the collaboration, students and staff have free access to BFI Player – a streaming service showing critically acclaimed classic, cult and archive films available for research purposes, and to enjoy at leisure. Students and staff can search collections including LGBTQIA+, visionary directors and black stories.

How to access the BFI player



University student
“Access to BFI Player opens up wonderful opportunities for students to engage with film, as part of their formal programme of study and as part of the wider student experience that we offer. Working with the BFI on key projects will allow us to enhance the quality of our education and research in the field of visual and film studies, to develop students’ employability within the cultural sector, and to offer workplace experience with a vibrant, world-class organisation.”

Professor Janet Stewart
Executive Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities

Featured Student and Staff Blogs

Find out how the partnership is enhancing students' employability and learn more about our work in the community

Working as a content creator and training with the BFI

Amy Nugent writes about her part-time job as a Content Creator for the University and training with BFI.
A view of Durham from across the river

Three surprising things I learned about the BFI during my placement

Isabella French talks about her work experience placement, which she landed as a result of our partnership with BFI.
The BFI offices

Shakespeare's First Folio Celebrations

Professor Jonathan Long, School of Modern Languages and Cultures and Co-Director, Centre for Visual Arts and Culture shares his experience of the celebrations
Play On

Past events

Have a look at the events that have been hosted as part of our partnership with the BFI.
Check out our past events
A still from the film, Malcolm X, showing a man speaking into a microphone against the backdrop of a face in the background
British Film Institute logo

British Film Institute

Learn more about the British Film Institute (BFI).

Visit the BFI website



“An understanding and appreciation of the moving image continues to grow in importance, with visual storytelling a powerful engine of change, education and shared understanding. We are delighted to support students across Durham University to engage directly with the cultural and practical aspects of filmmaking, embedding the role and value of film and film-making across the student experience.”

Simone Pyne
Senior Business Development Manager, BFI