Photo of Professor Linda Ruth Williams
Professor Linda Ruth Williams

Prof Linda Ruth Williams is the Co-Investigator of Calling the Shots: Women and Contemporary Film Culture in the UK, 2000-2015.

She was Professor of Film at the University of Southampton until 2017, when she moved to the University of Exeter, where she is now head of film. In 2019 she is Visiting Fellow at Corpus Christi College Cambridge, and an Affiliate of the Centre for Film and Screen.

Linda’s research is most focused on contemporary British and American film; she has published widely on gender in cinema, sexuality and censorship, the relationship between film and contemporary art, and genre cinema. She is author of five books, including The Erotic Thriller in Contemporary Cinema (2005) and the forthcoming Steven Spielberg’s Children, as well as co-editor of Contemporary American Cinema (2006).

She is writing a monograph as part of the Calling the Shots project, with a working-title of Women writer-directors in contemporary British cinema, which draws on the original interview material generated by the project and maps out the work of key female filmmakers working in Britain this century.

Linda is actively involved in exhibition and wider outreach events around contemporary film. Since 2007 she has co-curated Screenplay, the Shetland Film Festival, which takes place every September. Connected with this she was also part of the team that mounted the nationwide touring film event (which was part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad), A Hansel of Film, funded by the Olympic Lottery Fund and Creative Scotland. She was also one of the initiators of the New Forest Film Festival.

In October-November 2004 she co-curated, with film critic Mark Kermode, a major History of the Horror Film at the National Film Theatre in London, and in 2014 she chaired the Short Film Jury at the Edinburgh International Film Festival, and has since served on festival juries in the USA and Canada. Linda regularly writes articles and reviews for the BFI journal, Sight and Sound, and also has written for The IndependentThe Guardian and The Independent on Sunday.

She contributes to TV and radio programmes on film issues when she can, having appeared on Newsnight Review in BBC2, and Woman’s Hour and The Film Programme, both on BBC Radio 4. She has an ongoing interest in ageing and cinema, particularly gender and women in US and UK cinema since 2000.

Read Linda’s university profile