The Critics Circle


Anna Smith is named Chair, and six critics join the Film Section at its annual general meeting

Rich Cline

Published: 09/10/2014

After six years of service as Chair of the Critics’ Circle Film Section, Jason Solomons has stepped down from the role. Anna Smith has been elected Chair of the Film Section, while Rich Cline was voted in as Vice Chair and Karen Krizanovich as Hon Secretary. Anna is the Film Section's first female Chair since Dilys Powell stepped down in 1976 to become President of the Circle.

Meanwhile, six new members have been invited to join the Critics' Circle at the Film Section's Annual General Meeting on 1 October. They are Jason Best (What’s On TV), Stephen Dalton (The Hollywood Reporter), Emma Dibdin (Total Film), Deborah Ross (The Spectator), Francesca Steele (The Economist) and Matthew Turner (The List).

Anna Smith is film critic and broadcaster who began her career as a magazine editor before going freelance in 2000. Currently Metro’s acting film editor, she is also a regular critic for Sky News Sunrise, BBC News, BBC Radio, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Sight & Sound, Empire, Elle, Time Out, Heat and more. She regularly interviews actors on stage, on screen and in print. Anna joined the Critics’ Circle in 2007 and became Vice Chair of the Film Section in 2009, also spending five years on the awards committee. She was a member of the Cannes Fipresci jury in 2011 and a judge at last year’s Screen Awards.

Rich Cline also chairs the Critics' Circle Film Awards. He has been a Critics' Circle member since 2003, and joined the awards organising committee in 2005, becoming awards chair in 2012. He hosted this year's ceremony at the May Fair Hotel. Rich launched the UK's first film ezine in 1995 with Shadows on the Wall, a printed newsletter since 1985, and has worked as a freelance critic for the BBC, Heat, Film4, Contactmusic and various print, radio and TV outlets. He also served for five years as Hon Secretary of the Film Section, and is a member of Fipresci, the Online Film Critics Society and Galeca.

Karen Krizanovich is a writer and broadcaster whose TV appearances include CNN, Newsnight and The Review Show. Her writing has been published in Financial Times, The Guardian and The Telegraph, among many others, and she is a regular reviewer for Monocle Radio and Radio Times. A researcher for film and television, Karen is also the author of Infographic Guide to the Movies (2013), available from Amazon. She joined the Critics' Circle in 1991 and is also a member of Fipresci.

Established in 1913, The Critics' Circle is the oldest organisation of its kind in the world, with more than 400 members who work in the UK media as critics of drama, art and architecture, music, film and dance. The Film Section membership is made up of more than 140 UK film critics, broadcasters and writers, including Guardian critic Peter Bradshaw, the BBC’s Mark Kermode and Sight & Sound Editor Nick James, and has presented its awards annually since 1980.

The Critics' Circle Film Awards, a major event in the cinema calendar, are voted for annually by the members of the Film Section. The 35th London Critics' Circle Film Awards will be held on Sunday, 18 January 2015 at the May Fair Hotel. Nominations will be announced on 16 December.


Enquiries about the Critics' Circle should be made to the Hon Gen Sec Rick Jones by email or telephone 020 8698 2460.