Directors Nicholas Hytner and Jude Kelly look set to be the strongest candidates for the National Theatre directorship, which becomes vacant next year with Trevor Nunn's departure. Although a shortlist of five (probably including Max Stafford-Clark, John Caird and Howard Davies) has apparently been compiled, the tide of opinion is swinging the way of Hytner and Kelly. Whilst her experience has been largely confined to major success at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Kelly has not denied interest in the position and has support on the NT's board. Hytner, a popular innovator for both stage and screen, has never actually commanded a theatre before but has a wide range of productions to his credit. An interesting aside for the debate concerns the comedian Ken Campbell, who was interviewed by the NT's chairman Christopher Hogg recently. Although unlikely to be selected, Campbell nevertheless apparently made suggestions ranging from Ken Dodd shows to car boot sales to improve the NT.