We are excited to open the third edition of the Jerusalem Women's Film Festival!
We have pledged to promote social agendas while maintaining uncompromising quality: this is the opportunity to watch films made by the best filmmakers from Israel and abroad in a celebration of female-driven, original and diverse cinema! We seek to celebrate this together - making quality films accessible to all, integrating Jerusalem’s diverse groups and populations and, of course, celebrating excellent films directed by women.
The four-day event promises a fascinating, packed schedule with screenings of feature-length films from Israel and abroad, conversations with groundbreaking Israeli filmmakers, a panel discussion on Haredi feminism and special screenings in both East and West Jerusalem. This year, for the first time, we are holding an event called “Focus on our Neighbors” – Israeli premiers of films made by women filmmakers from Turkey, Kosovo, Macedonia and Albania. Through these films, we will be exposed to the familiar yet strange worlds of our neighbors who, just like us here in Jerusalem, are preoccupied with the fine line between the old and the new, tradition and progress. We will also screen “Solidarity”, a celebrated Ukrainian film on the hardships of war and the plight of refugees, made long before the current war in Ukraine broke out.
As women who live, create and love this city, with all its complexities and nuances, we feel that Jerusalem is the best place to host this festival. As women who share common experiences with women everywhere – Jewish women and Arab women, secular women and religious women – we have found that the language of film is the best way to express the things that unite us, especially in such complicated, crazy, amazing city such as Jerusalem.
Why do we need this, anyway? Even today, in 2022, female directors are still blatantly under-represented. Around the world, we are witnessing a gradual change for the better, as major film festivals have begun to insist on complete gender parity, with at least half of the films directed by women. Unfortunately, this progress is yet to reach Israel. During the last Israeli Cinema Day, 32 new films were screened – only two of which directed by women. While half of film school graduates in Israel are women, this gender parity loses steam later on, and many talented women do not pursue a career in filmmaking. This is why we find it so important to put a spotlight on films made by women. We believe that equal representation can lead to an equal world.
We are delighted to invite you to celebrate films made by women, on women, for everyone!
Lihi Sabad and Shira Meishar, Festival Directors
Founded by the Jerusalem Filmmakers Guild in collaboration with and support of the Jerusalem Municipality, the Jerusalem Women's Film Festival is organized by the Women in the Frame Association.