Film distributor who through Artificial Eye brought the riches of world cinema to UK audiences
Pamela Engel, who has died aged 82, is owed a huge debt by film-makers from all over the world and by those of us who enjoy their work. As co-owner of the film distributors Artificial Eye, with her first husband, Andi Engel, and latterly New Wave Films, in which she was partnered by her second husband, Robert Beeson, she brought to London arthouse riches few others would have dared to contemplate. Some made money, some did not. But for Pam that was a minor detail.
For several decades Pam influenced critics and customers alike. Her taste was fiercely strict but, when she admired a film, famously enthusiastic. As critic for the Guardian during much of her halcyon days, I seldom disagreed with her. Which was just as well, since I got severely ticked off when I did.