Israel Film Fest in L.A., the largest showcase of Israeli cinema and television in North America is celebrating its 35th year, unspooling May 5 to May 26 in theaters and virtually. The opening night film on May 5, coinciding with Israel Independence Day, is Avi Nesher’s “Image of Victory,” screening at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills.
This year’s edition includes five U.S. premieres with a total of 30 features, docs and shorts. Ahead of the festival, Henry Winkler will be honored with the Career Achievement Award and philanthropist David Weiner will be honored with the Humanitarian Award at the festival’s sponsor luncheon on April 29.
“I’m thrilled that the Israel Film Festival in Los Angeles is fully back for audiences to celebrate and support Israeli movies and their talented filmmakers. We hope that this 35th edition will be a new, exciting beginning towards continuing to bring the very best of Israeli culture to Los Angeles,” noted founder and exec director Meir Fenigstein.
Other films screening include comedy “Saving Shuli,” Ophir doc winner “Summer Nights” and Ophir-winning film “Here We Are.”
Other screenings will take place at Lumiere Cinemas Music Hall Theater in Beverly Hills and the Laemmle Town Center 5 in Encino. Find the full schedule and ticket information here.
Martin Scorsese Launches The Film Foundation Restoration Screening Room
The Film Foundation, the non-profit organization created in 1990 by Martin Scorsese, is launching The Film Foundation Restoration Screening Room to showcase films restored with support from the foundation and its partners. The Film Foundation Restoration Screening Room will be available free of charge, starting on May 9, with additional feature presentations debuting on the second Monday of each month. The first presentation will be “I Know Where I’m Going” (1945, directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger), restored by The Film Foundation and BFI National Archive.
“We’re looking forward to making these beautiful restorations available to a wide audience,” said Scorsese. “Many of these presentations will feature restorations that are rarely seen, with myself and other filmmakers sharing why these films are important, how they have impacted our lives, and why it’s crucial that they be preserved.”
Kevin Bacon Joins Netflix’s ‘Leave the World Behind’
Kevin Bacon and Farrah Mackenzie have joined Netflix’s “Leave the World Behind,” joining Julia Roberts, Mahershala Ali, Ethan Hawke and Myha’la Herrold in the film based on the bestselling novel by Rumaan Alam.
The story revolves around a couple vacationing in a rental house on Long Island, who are surprised when the homeowners arrive bearing news of a mysterious blackout.
Sam Esmail writes and directs, and the Obamas’ production Higher Ground recently came on as an executive producer. The novel was a finalist for the National Book Award.
‘High Noon,’ Gary Cooper to Be Honored at USC
USC’s School of Cinematic Arts is partnering with the Gary Cooper estate for the 70th anniversary of Oscar-nominated Western “High Noon.” On Sunday, April 24, events will include a special screening and panel, book signing and opening of the Gary Cooper Exhibition.
The exhibition will feature Cooper’s Oscars, personal and film fashion, photos with family and friends including Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso and more. The exhibition will be on display in the School of Cinematic Arts lobby to Sept. 30.
Former Hockey Player Miles Koules Launches Koulest Productions
Retired professional hockey player Miles Koules has launched Koulest Productions and teamed with his father, legendary producer Oren Koules, co-founder of Evolution Entertainment/Twisted Pictures who produced the blockbuster horror franchise “Saw” for Lionsgate as well as the CBS Television series “Two and a Half Men” to option bestselling, award-winning young adult survival thriller, “Ski Weekend.”
“I am so excited to be able to partner with my son and pass the torch to Miles!” said Oren Koules. “I can’t wait to impart my 30-plus years experience and expertise and shepherd a new generation of talent into the producing world. I have known Rektok Ross for over 13 years and her drive to create characters and tell stories is second to none. Miles has chosen the right first project for Koulest in ‘Ski Weekend.'”
“Being a professional athlete has helped me hone my drive and dedication to success, but my passion has always been in discovering excellent storytelling. I’m so excited to begin this journey, grateful for the support, expertise, and guidance of my family along the way,” said Miles Koules. “When I first started my production company I knew Ski Weekend’ was the type of project I wanted to work on right away. With many other potential films and shows on my slate, my father and I agreed that this was an obvious choice for our first project as Rektok Ross is a force to be reckoned with and is known for her exciting storytelling with strong female leads at the forefront. In ‘Ski Weekend,’ Rektok has crafted a timely, fast-paced survival story that keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very end, wondering what you would do to survive. But even more than that is her framing of the important issues of today with layered, diverse teen characters navigating questions of life, death, and everything in between. It’s not often you stumble upon a thriller with this level of depth, and I knew upon reading the book that it needed to be brought to the screen. I can’t wait to show everyone what we have been working on!”
Ross said. “As a teen once myself and now a mother to three stepchildren, it was important to me to tell a story that’s accessible to kids and adults alike about the harm of stereotyping and prejudging one another—especially in today’s current climate. I’m so excited to be working with Oren and Miles as they are true visionaries who understood the heart of this book from the very start.”
Casting Society Collaborates With Easterseals Disability Film Challenge
Easterseals Disability Film Challenge (EDFC) and Casting Society are collaborating on two events – ”Intro To Casting” and a “CSA Member Networking Event” – to create visibility and opportunity for the disabled entertainment professional community. The goal of these events is to affect concrete change in how actors in historically underrepresented communities are afforded access to job opportunities.
The “Intro to Casting” panel, held virtually on April 23, at 10:00 AM PT / 1:00 PM ET, will include an in-depth discussion to forge actionable change in the field of accessible and inclusive casting. Panelists include esteemed casting professionals and established trailblazers in the field of inclusive casting including Deborah Aquila, Russell Boast, April Caputi, Zora DeHorter, Elizabeth Hay, Rosalie Joseph, Marci Phillips and Michael Sanford. The panel will be hosted by Danielle Pretsfelder Demchick, with opening remarks from Nic Novicki, EDFC Founder. The goal of the panel is to both enlighten and educate up and coming disabled filmmakers about the role of casting within the filmmaking process and also introduce casting as a potential field to aspiring filmmakers who are participating in the challenge.
On May 9, the “CSA Member Networking Event,” at 5:00 PM PT / 8:00 PM ET, is an opportunity for the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge Festival’s finalists to meet with CSA members with a focus on creating meaningful collaborations for future endeavors.
ADG Announces Election Results; Chuck Parker Re-Elected as Executive Director
The Art Directors Guild have re-elected National Executive Director Chuck Parker, it was announced today. Joel Cohen, currently a business representative, was elected as Associate National Executive Director, replacing dooner. Both will serve a three-year term.
National President Nelson Coates said, “I am pleased ADG 800 members have recognized the accomplishments and leadership of National Executive Director Chuck Parker in this election. I look forward to continuing our work together on behalf of our 3,100 members to build an even stronger Guild. I also wish to thank outgoing Associate National Executive Director dooner for his years of service and welcome incoming Associate National Executive Director Joel Cohen to the ADG staff.”
In other election news from the ADG, Evan Rohde, AD Council Chair and Board member, Susan Bolles, Council Vice Chair, Nikki Rudloff, Council Secretary, Oana B. Miller, Treasurer; and Mark Worthington and Dina Lipton, ADG Board members, and Korey Washington and Michele Yu as Council members, were named to serve on the Art Directors Council.
‘Invaders From Mars’ New 4K Restoration by Ignite Films to screen at TCM Festival
The classic “Invaders From Mars” has been restored by Scott MacQueen for the upcoming 4K UHD release by Ignite Films. The newly restored film will be seen by the public for the first time at the Turner Classics Festival on April 23 in Hollywood.
The star of the film, Jimmy Hunt, who was a child actor in 1953 will be in attendance at the screening, as will MacQueen. “Invaders from Mars” is a sci-fi tale told from a pre-adolescent boy’s point of view, as he alone witnesses the invasion of aliens who capture and brainwash residents of an average small town.
Bonus features include newly commissioned artwork including an exclusive poster by graphic artist Laz Marquez, a featurette of interviews with Hunt, William Cameron Menzies’ biographer James Curtis, Restoration Supervisor Scott MacQueen and recollections of Menzies’ eldest granddaughter Pamela Lauesen, and before/after clips of restoration – original negative and archival film elements.