In the early 1970’s Nik Powell set up Virgin Records with Richard Branson and in the space of ten years the pair turned a small mail-order record operation into a multi-million pound conglomerate.
In 1982 Powell went into partnership with Stephen Woolley. Together they formed Palace Video, followed by Palace Pictures, and then Palace Productions, soon establishing each as highly regarded entities within the film distribution and production industry. Powell has acted as Executive Producer on all of Palace’s productions including Neil Jordan’s COMPANY OF WOLVES, OSCAR NOMINATED MONA LISA, Michael Caton-Jones’ SCANDAL, and Neil Jordan’s multi Oscar nominated and winning THE CRYING GAME.
Nik and Stephen Woolley’s new company Scala produced Iain Softley’s BACKBEAT, Terence Davies’ THE NEON BIBLE, Shane Meadows’ TWENTYFOUR: SEVEN, Mark Herman’s Oscar and Golden Globe nominated LITTLE VOICE, Fred Schepsi’s LAST ORDERS starring Michael Caine, Bob Hoskins, Tom Courtenay, Helen Mirren, David Hemmings and Ray Winstone, Charles Dance’s LADIES IN LAVENDER, starring Dame Judi Dench, Dame Maggie Smith, Miriam Margolis. Nik also executive produced CALENDAR GIRLS and more recently in 2016 the 10m Euro Dutch film Brimstone starring Guy Pierce and Dakota Fanning.
Nik was appointed Director of the National Film and Television School in 2003 and stepped down as Director at the end of August 2017 after 14 years at the helm. Under his leadership, the NFTS grew from 150 students to over 500 students with a wider, deeper and more diverse portfolio of courses with over £30 million of hugely expanded and modernised facilities.
He is now focusing on his role as Co-Chairman of Scala Productions.
Other roles included:
- Awarded OBE in 2018 New Year’s honours
- Chevalier dans l’ordre des arts et lettres
- Chairman and Deputy Chairman and member of the board of the European Film Academy and host of the European Awards 1996 to 2013
- Chairman of the Bafta Film committee and member of the Bafta Board of Trustees 2010-2016
- Vice Chairman of the GEECT (association of European Film Schools) Board 2004 to 2014
- Member of the US academy: AMPAS (Association of Motion Picture Arts and Science)
- Trustee of the board of the Northern Ireland Film and TV Commission and Chairman of its Film Investment Fund Committee 2003 to 2007
- Member of British Screen Advisory Council (overall umbrella body for UK media)
- Member of board of the European Producers Club
- Member of the Academy of the Asia Pacific Screen Awards
- Vice President of the National Society for Epilepsy
- Jury member and chair of numerous festival and awards juries
- Honorary Doctorate New Bucks University
- Trustee and chair of the Fundraising Committee of Tomorrow’s People charity