The Schmooze

Israeli Films Get an International Platform Online

On July 1, the Israel Film Center — housed at The JCC in Manhattan — launched the Israeli Film Database for public access. Conceived two years ago, the database has served primarily as a tool for Israeli film professionals to document and market their work. Now, anyone can view profiles for over 3000 Israeli films from the early 1960s to the present day.

While many of the titles will be unfamiliar even to those with an extensive knowledge of Israeli film (late 1990’s student films, anyone?), displaying the country’s cinematic history is just the point, said IFC director Isaac Zablocki, who also served as a filmmaker in the Israel Defense Forces. The Arty Semite contributor Josh Tapper spoke with Zablocki about IFC’s ambition to create a platform that will jointly serve industry types and boost Israeli cinema’s American profile.

Josh Tapper: Why create the Israeli Film Database?

Isaac Zablocki: We felt there was a need. A lot of people were trying to access Israeli films and it wasn’t always easy. We wanted to create a tool that would connect the community with the industry. There is no one platform for Israeli cinema. Many industries — Germany, for example — have programs for their films that promote them to the world. Before us, the official place to go was the Israeli consulate. But a national film resource shouldn’t be a government-run organization. The Israeli Film Database will be that international platform for Israeli films. Anybody looking for great world cinema will see this as an access point.

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Israeli Films Get an International Platform Online

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