Thursday, January 10, 2008
A Wide Spectrum of Filmmakers and Artists Attend NYJFF Opening Night Reception
Stimuated by the opening night screening of the engrossing Israeli documentary A Hebrew Lesson, the filmmakers, artists and curators attending the evening's reception were in the mood to discuss their responses to the film as well as the projects on which they are currently working. William Phuan, program director of the Asian American International Film Festival, originally from Singapore, identified with the immigrants' struggle to adapt to a new country as depicted in the opening night film: He thought their stories will appeal to a broad global audience. Jean Tsien, film editor on Please Vote for Me and Shut Up and Sing, reflected on the pace of A Hebrew Lesson while comparing it to the cutting in most American films. Filmmaker Danae Elon (Another Road Home, NYJFF 2005) talked about one of her current projects, a romantic comedy about circumcision. Another filmmaker in attendance, Tanaz Eshaghian (Love Iranian-American Style, NYJFF 2006), just completed the online edit on her new film about transgender people in Iran.
Four of the filmmakers whose work is being shown in this year's festival: (from l to r) Jason Hutt, director of Orthodox Stance; Elinor Kowarsky, producer of A Hebrew Lesson; Mark Podwal, executive producer of House of Life; Noah Harlan, co-producer of Tehilim. (Photo: John Aquino)
Filmmaker Danae Elon (Another Road Home, NYJFF 2005)
(from l to r) Andrew Ingall, Assistant Curator for The Jewish Museum and NYJFF programmer; Stuart Hands, NYJFF blogger; and Abe Lebovic who appears in this year's Goyta. (Photo: John Aquino)
(from l to r) Rachel Chanoff, Independent Curator and NYJFF programmer; Aviva Weintraub, NYJFF Director and Associate Curator, The Jewish Museum; and Ilana Trachtman, director of this year's Praying with Lior.
The two Avivas: Aviva Weintrab and Aviva Kempner, director of The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg and the upcoming Yoo-hoo, Mrs. Goldberg.