Program Highlight: Jerusalem Film Workshop
Green Productions and Onward Israel partner to bring international student filmmakers to Israel to experience the country and create powerful documentaries about the magical city of Jerusalem.
Israel’s quality filmmakers are increasingly in the international spotlight, garnering a host of prestigious awards.
Two of these producers, Gal Greenspan and Roi Kurland of Green Productions, partnered with Onward Israel to found the Jerusalem Film Workshop (JFW). The program is a realization of their vision to bring young filmmakers to Israel to tell unique stories through the medium of film.
The six-week summer program offers students, aged 19-27, from around the world the opportunity to live and learn in Jerusalem. They develop their passion and knowledge of filmmaking in this complex international ancient/contemporary city.
“The JFW brings young people from diverse countries to engage with issues that are relevant to Jerusalem. Some of them have no prior connection to Israel and through filmmaking they get to learn about the country and its stories,” says Greenspan.
Participants develop and advance their cinematography, producing, editing, and directing skills. They enjoy hands-on film education and production, taught by top industry professionals. Each student creates a 10-minute documentary which is screened at the prestigious International Film Festival in Jerusalem.
The students then take their work and screen them throughout the year at Jewish Film Festivals in their home states and countries. The 2017 cohort films, under the title Travelers, were screened worldwide. This included impressive showings at the Austin, Hong Kong, UK, Budapest, Vienna, Warsaw, Miami, Atlanta, Savannah, Kansas and San Francisco Jewish Film Festivals.
The JFW participants spoke at the festivals. They shared their experiences creating the films in Jerusalem, including their impressions of Israel and the strong personal and professional relationships they developed.