The Jerusalem Foundation Awards Prizes at the 34th Annual Jerusalem Film Festival

The Jerusalem Foundation Awards Prizes
Credit: Dor Credit
The Jerusalem Foundation Awards Prizes at the 34th Annual Jerusalem Film Festival

On Thursday, July 21, the Jerusalem Foundation awarded a wide array of prizes to film-makers from Jerusalem and around the world.

The Alex Bernstein Student Documentary Film Production Prize

In partnership with the Gesher Multi-Cultural Film Fund this prize is made possible by a generous gift from the Bernstein Family.

The first prize, of 40,000 NIS went to Maya Yavin, a student at the Bezalel Academy in Jerusalem, for “Malkah, Malkah,” a story about how her grandmother, Malkah, deals with the loss of her son and of her husband. The judges noted, “The film expresses an ability to tell a tragic story with a smile and with humor. We congratulate the film-maker on her choice to focus on her brave and charismatic grandmother.”

The second prize of 25,000 NIS went to Lina Tsivian, also a student at the Bezalel Academy, for her film “I Am Not a Robot,” which uses animation and found footage to explore alienation in modern society. The judges praised the film’s “innovation with a smile, creativity, strength and grace…a true search for meaning, in a non-standard way.”

The winning films will be screened at next year’s festival.


The Haggiag Family Awards for Israeli Cinema

These awards were dedicated in memory of Robert Nissim Haggiag, the famous Italian producer whose films include the Barefoot Contessa and Lolita. Simone Haggiag was there to present the awards on behalf of his family.

The The Haggiag Award for Best Feature Film, in the sum of 100,000 NIS went to Scaffolding, directed by Matan Yair and produced by Gal Greenspan, Roi Kurland, Stanisław Dziedzic, Moshe Edery, and Leon Edery.

The judges commended the production, "For a film that combines the reality of a group of teenagers and the will of questioning cinema and the role of filmmaking. For its capacity of capturing the tenderness sometimes behind these kids' violence, their capacity for love, their surprising imagination, in a society that places them in a marginal role forever."

The Haggiag Award for Best Actor went Asher Lax for his performance in Scaffolding, with honorary mention for Adar Hazazi for his performance in Doubtful.

The Haggiag Award for Best Actress went to Samira Saraya for her performance in Death of a Poetess, marking the first time that an Israel Arab actress won the award.

The Aaron Emanuel Award for Best Cinematography went to Shai Goldman for Doubtful, with Honorary Mention of Bartosz Bieniek for Scaffolding

The Jerusalem Foundation Award for Best Editing went to Michal Openheim for The Cakemaker.

The Jerusalem Foundation Award for Best Original Score went to Daphna Keenan for Family.


The Jewish Experience Awards - Courtesy of Michaela and Leon Constantiner

The Lia Award in honor of Lia van Leer for films dealing with Jewish heritage went to The Cakemaker by Ofir Raul Graizer.

The Avner Shalev - Yad Vashem Chairman’s Award for Artistic Achievement in Holocaust-related Film went to 1945 by Ferenc Török


The International Competition: Wilf Family Foundation Award

The Wilf Family Foundation Award, in the sum of 20,000 USD, went to On the Beach at Night Alone by Hong Sang-soo, who was praied for “Using the simplest of cinematic tools, Hong Sang-soo creates a mysterious magic, rooted in the heart of daily life…one of the deepest descriptions of a human being we’ve seen in cinema in recent years."

There were also two Honorary Mentions: Western by Valeska Grisebach and A Man of Integrity by Mohammad Rasoulof.

The Jerusalem Foundation would like to congratulate all of the Jerusalem Film Festival award-winners of 2017 and is proud to be a part of fostering the next generation of cinematic talent, in Jerusalem and beyond.