Home News Dancing Arabs will Launch 23rd TJFF

Dancing Arabs will Launch 23rd TJFF

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(April 15, 2015 – Toronto, ON) The 23rd annual Toronto Jewish Film Festival gets underway on the last day of April with Toronto Premiere of the Israel-France-Germany coproduction, Dancing Arabs. The film is celebrated director Eran Riklis’ (The Syrian Bride, Lemon Tree) adaptation of Sayed Kashua’s acclaimed semi-autobiographical novel. We meet the young Eyad who tries to navigate the complexities of being an Arab-Israeli citizen attending an Israeli preparatory school. He experiences an intense romance with an Israeli girl, and develops a friendship with Jonathan, a boy suffering from muscular dystrophy.

Struggling to retain a sense of identity while making his way through the rungs of Israeli society, Eyad learns a profound and unexpected lesson. Co-starring Yaël Abecassis, Marlene Bajali, Tawfeek Barhum and Razi Gabareen, Variety said this was… “Riklis’ strongest film in several years.” Of special interest is the attendance of the director for this screening.

Two special presentations at the film festival had their roots on the smaller screen. On May 2nd in a free screening, organizers offer up a chance to revisit three episodes of the series that made Al Waxman into a Canadian icon. Considered a milestone in Canadian television, King of Kensington was the first TV comedy that honoured the country’s ethnic diversity. The heart of the show was Waxman`s portrayal of the affable everyman, Larry King, a working class Jewish convenience;Al Waxman, King of Kensington; store owner who lives with his mother in the multi-ethnic community of Toronto’s Kensington Market. Over the course of five years, the show went through various casting changes while it introduced a memorable series of regulars including Helene Winstone, Fiona Reid, Peter Boretski, Rosemary Radcliffe and Jayne Eastwood. In addition to these television episodes there will also be screenings of three films that starred Al Waxman. They are, The DowrySun In My Eyes and The Winnings Of Frankie Walls.

Another tribute to The Box, is a look at the career of one of the medium`s most popular and most influential creators, Rod Serling. Serling`s iconic image is strongly associated with the legendary TV anthology show, The Twilight Zone. As a writer, he was committed to using television as a forum for social protest, bringing stories dealing with racism, war, conformity and even the Holocaust to mainstream American audiences. Frustrated by the networks diluting many of his most politically-engaged scripts, Serling created The Twilight Zone as a way to confront the problems he observed in America—by setting them in other-worldly realms in order to evade censorship. Programmers at TJFF have selected some of his most rarely-screened works, which will be introduced by Rod Serling`s daughter, the writer Anne Serling, who will also offer a more personal portrait of the celebrated writer. Screenings include, In The Presence Of Mine Enemies, The Loner: The Homecoming of Lemuel Stove, The Man in the Funny Suit, Requiem For A Heavyweight which was directed by Ralph Nelson from a script by Serling, A Storm in Summer and an episode from the series, Twilight Zone: Walking Distance. On Sunday, May 2nd Anne Serling will give a free talk at the ROM Theatre titled Rod Serling: The Boy, The Man, The Writer, The Father.For more information about the full TJFF schedule and tickets, click here for a link to the Toronto Jewish Film Festival and other festivals in late April and all of May.esence Of Mine Enemies, The Loner: The Homecoming of Lemuel Stove, The Man in the Funny Suit, Requiem For A Heavyweight which was directed by Ralph Nelson from a script by Serling, A Storm in Summer and an episode from the series, Twilight Zone: Walking Distance. On Sunday, May 2nd Anne Serling will give a free talk at the ROM Theatre titled Rod Serling: The Boy, The Man, The Writer, The Father.

For more information about the full TJFF schedule and tickets, click here for a link to the Toronto Jewish Film Festival and other festivals in late April and all of May.