Israel stares at Locarno
by David González
- The First Look on Israeli Cinema initiative takes six films in post-production to the festival, while Tikkun will compete for the Golden Leopard
This year, the 68th Locarno International Film Festival has decided to shine a spotlight on one of the most vibrant film industries in the Middle East. The festival organisers, headed by artistic director Carlo Chatrian, have assembled a selection of Israeli films currently in post-production, presented for the first time to an audience of professionals so they can secure the financing they need for completion. Formerly known as Carte Blanche, the First Look on Israeli Cinema section will screen six titles hailing from the country: Eitan Anner’s A Quiet Heart (“Lev Shaket”), produced by GreenProductions; Haim Tabakman’s Ewa, produced by Metro Communication and Plan B; Miya Hatav’s Hope (“Amal”), produced by Daroma Productions; Meni Yaesh’s Our Father (“Avinu”), produced by Transfax Films Production; Elite Texer’s Sand Storm (“Sufat Chol”), produced by 2-Team Productions; and Eyal Halfon’s The 90 Minute War (“Milhemet 90 Hadakot”), produced by Norma Productions and Gringo Films GmbH. On August 10, a jury will award a prize of €60,000 for post-production services and another €5,500 for advertising.
Israel will also be present outside the festival’s industry events. Tikkun, by writer, director, visual artist and author Avishai Sivan, will vie for the Golden Leopard in the international competition section. The film tells the story of Haim-Aaron, an ultra-Orthodox religious scholar from Jerusalem- whose talent and devotion are envied by all- who, one evening, following a self-imposed fast, collapses and loses consciousness. After the event, his life takes an extremely dramatic turn. The film, starring Aharon Traitel and shot in black and white, is being produced by Plan B Productions, The Mouth Agape and United King Films.
Lastly, the Pardi di domani section will screen Osi Wald’s animated short film, Shikuf, and the I film delle giurie (Films from the Jury) section will screen Nadav Lapid’s The Kindergarten Teacher [+see also:
film profile] and Lama?, as he is a juror for the international competition.