Anthony Minghella, the director who chairs of the British Film Institute (BFI), has launched a wide-ranging internal review of the venerable film body to develop a blueprint for the future of the organisation.

The strategic review may well lead to an overhaul or even a scaling back at the National Film and Television Archive, seen by many as an almost holy part of the body's work.

With the BFI stretched financially, the review will consider the scale of the collections, currently seven million items, and any future acquisitions against the BFI's ability to manage, preserve and make the material accessible.

"The BFI is a public service which broadens opportunities for access, knowledge and inspiration about film and television," Minghella said. "In a period where there is increasing difficulty for audiences to enjoy world cinema and important films from the past in an informed context, the BFI's advocacy is a critical one. We want this review to help us formulate a plan to deliver our full potential, reaching out to the widest audiences across the UK."

Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell highlighted the BFI's assets and expertise but said that "this invaluable national resource could be enjoyed by many more".

"I welcome this review," she said. "I am confident that, following it, Anthony Minghella's impassioned leadership will enable the Institute to reach its full potential."

Other core areas of investigation include the role of the BFI as a UK-wide agency and how its role compared to support super body Film Council and the Government.

With the Film Council launching its own distribution support strategy, the BFI controversially recently scaled back its support for regional arthouses.

"The review is a wonderful opportunity for an incoming director to take a quick but thorough look at the BFI - with the aim of creating a vibrant, exciting and ambitious vision for the future," said Amanda Nevill, who takes up the role of director on June 1.

The expectations of new and existing BFI audiences will be examined, as will how the body can best deliver its services for maximum impact. Also on the agenda are improvements in organisational structure, performance and value for money.