Israel fest kicks off

Rothman, Kishon receive kudos

The Los Angeles portion of the 17th Israel Film Festival kicked off Tuesday at the Egyptian Theatre with tributes and award presentations to Tom Rothman, chairman of Fox Filmed Entertainment, and Israeli writer-director Ephraim Kishon.

“I’m clearly deeply flattered. I haven’t decided whether I should be insulted or not, too,” the 46-year-old Rothman joked in his acceptance of the Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to him by Cameron Diaz. “I know Hollywood is a young man’s game, but I thought I had a little left in me.”

Kishon, whose films “Sallah” (1963) and “The Policemen” (1972) were nominated in Oscar’s foreign-lingo category, said he was a lot happier to receive his Lifetime Visionary Award than a potential Oscar.

The tributes were followed by the screening of “Time of Favor,” winner of six Israeli Academy Awards including picture, actor and actress.

Pic’s award-winning stars, Aki Avni and Tinkerbell, were present at the gala along with director Joseph Cedar; Arnon Milchan, honorary chairman of IsraFest Foundation Inc.; Meir Fenigstein, executive director of IsraFest; and thesps Mili Avital and David Schwimmer.

The 17th Israel Film Festival will screen more than 35 feature films, documentaries, miniseries, television dramas and student films at Laemmle’s Music Hall Theatre in Beverly Hills and at Laemmle’s Town Center 5 in Encino through April 5.

For more information, contact IsraFest at (877) 966-5566, or visit www.israelfilmfestival.com.

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