Jim Cook, who died on Saturday August 31st 2019 after some years of illness, taught part-time in the Department in the late-1990s/early-2000s. Students taught by Jim always remembered what a good time they had in classes, how thoughtful and interesting their fellow students turned out to be, and how very much he knew, and they learned, about cinema. Jim loved the cinema – all cinema – but particularly Hollywood cinema. He was a significant figure in the development of Film Studies in this country, working for many years in the Education Department of the British Film Institute to develop the teaching of film before GCSEs, A Levels, and degrees in film existed. The BFI ran an annual residential summer school from which many early Film Studies syllabuses were developed, and Jim was a key contributor to planning and teaching these schools. He was also central to their social life, and that around the London University/BFI’s film evening classes. That is perhaps how many will best remember Jim: laughing and drinking and arguing about some minor character actor in a Hollywood film.
Our condolences to those close to Jim, and particularly his partner Ulli Sieglohr and his daughter Sam.