Palm Beach Jewish Film Fes­ti­val pre­pares for 24th sea­son

Sun Sentinel Palm Beach Edition - Society Scene - Palm Beach - - Scene & Be Seen -

The Don­ald M. Ephraim Palm Beach Jewish Film Fes­ti­val, the largest Jewish film fes­ti­val in Florida, an­nounced the line-up for its 24th sea­son, which will run Jan. 16-26.

The fes­ti­val, which cel­e­brates Jewish cul­ture, his­tory, re­li­gion and so­ciopo­lit­i­cal is­sues, will fea­ture 58 screen­ings of 39 films, doc­u­men­taries and shorts in four venues across Palm Beach County. Venues in­clude the Cobb The­ater at Down­town at the Gar­dens in Palm Beach Gar­dens; Frank The­atres at the Del­ray Mar­ket­place in Del­ray Beach; TheNor­ton Mu­seum of Art in West Palm Beach; and The Kravis Center for the Per­form­ing Arts in West Palm Beach.

Re­cently re­named for the fes­ti­val’s long­time sup­porter, the fes­ti­val will be chaired by San­dra and Bernie Meyer and di­rected by newly ap­pointed vet­eran pro­ducer Ellen Wed­ner who takes the lead with more than 35 years of ex­pe­ri­ence. This sea­son, au­di­ences will be treated to an im­pres­sive list of award-win­ning films mak­ing their Florida and South Florida premiers, in­clud­ing Is­raeli Academy Award win­ner “The Bal­lad of the Weep­ing Spring,” the of­fi­cial Tribeca Film Fes­ti­val se­lec­tion “Danc­ing in Jaffa” and the United States pre­mier of “Ki­don,” an Is­raeli spy thriller based on a true story.

Ki­don, co-star­ring Is­raeli supermodel Bar Re­faeli, ex­plores the Jan­uary 2010 death of Mah­moud al Mab­houh, found dead in his ho­tel room in Dubai. The lo­cal po­lice ac­cused the Mos­sad and re­leased se­cu­rity cam­era footage show­ing sup­posed Is­raeli agents caught on tape in the prepa­ra­tion and ex­e­cu­tion of the mur­der. This made world head­lines but no one was as shocked as the Mos­sad it­self, who knew that three men and one woman on the ho­tel se­cu­rity tapes did not work for Mos­sad.

On Jan. 16, the fes­ti­val will open at the Kravis Center for the Per­form­ing Arts with a spe­cial trib­ute to Don Ephraim, who cre­ated a legacy for the fes­ti­val. The fea­tured doc­u­men­tary is “When Com­e­dyWent to School,” a nos­tal­gic look at the birth of stand-up com­edy from the golden era of the Borscht Belt, up­state New York’s Catskills Moun­tain. Nar­rated by co­me­dian Robert Klein, the film fea­tures in­ter­views and clips from comics in­clud­ing Jerry Lewis, Sid Cae­sar, Jackie Ma­son, Mort Sahl and Jerry Stiller. Film guests in­clude co­me­dian Dick Capri.

In a ca­reer that has spanned two con­ti­nents, Capri has played ev­ery ma­jor en­ter­tain­ment medium in­clud­ing night­clubs, re­sorts, are­nas and the­aters. Capri made his Broad­way de­but in 1991 at the Lunt-Fon­tanne The­ater, co-star­ring in the crit­i­cally ac­claimed “Catskills On Broad­way.” Join­ing him will be Arnold Gra­ham, a tal­ent agent and pro­ducer credited for shows on and off Broad­way such as “TheWorld Ac­cord­ing to Me,” “My Mother’s Ital­ian My Fa­ther’s Jewish,” “I’m in Ther­apy” and the com­edy “A La Carte.”

Gen­eral ad­mis­sion to open­ing night is $20.

For more in­for­ma­tion, call 561-740-9000, ext. 227 or visit www.pb­jff.org.

Sol Hitzig, left, and Joyce Salt­man

Ellen L. Wed­ner, left, and DonaldM. Ephraim

Bernie Meyer, front, and Carol Reinoso

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