WATCH: Finding Abraham is a film’ that will defy viewers’ expectations
April 14, 2022
A multi-award-winning documentary executively produced by Jewish News is finally unveiled today.
An award-winning “acid trip” of a film exploring the historic Abraham Accords – and executive produced by Jewish News – will finally be unveiled today.
Finding Abraham follows young Emiratis, Bahrainis, Moroccans and Egyptians on their first visit to Israel last summer – with the film’s director Malcolm Green promising far more than an exercise “in handshakes and high fives”.
The 30-minute documentary explores the potential and durability of the agreements between the Jewish state and her neighbours, giving voice to sceptics alongside advocates, including Palestinian market stallholders, football coaches bridging the Jewish-Arab divide, Ethiopian immigrants and members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
During the journey organised by non-political non-governmental organisation Israel-is, the visitors and their Israeli counterparts immerse themselves in yeshiva life, visit the Peres Centre for Peace, witness coexistence between students at Bar Ilan’s Dangoor Centre and even take part in an ambulance shift.
Green said it was not a “conventional observational” film. “I wanted the film to defy expectations,” said the adman, who has worked for brands including Walkers and Halifax, governments including Tony Blair’s Labour and, most recently, a series of commercials for Dubai Expo.
“The end product is a loud, crazy, in-your-face acid trip through the chaos and complexity of conflict and identity in one of the most contentious regions on earth. Ultimately, it’s all about people and why it’s our diversity, quirks and differences that make human beings so interesting.
“In order to make something visually and sonically edgy, provocative and somewhat weird, I had to collaborate with people who shared the same vision. That’s why my ‘parters-in-weirdness’ are Jewish News, who are no strangers to fearlessly zigging where others zag.”
For the documentary, Jewish News followed in the footsteps of a small number of media outlets including the Guardian and New York Times in producing films of its own.
The film – initiated by this newspaper 15 months ago and featuring original music composed by Kevin Pollard – has already received prizes at film festivals around the globe, including the Paris Cinema Awards, Cannes World film Festival and New York Independent Cinema Awardsl. A screening at the UN in New York was postponed amid the crisis in Ukraine.
Finding Abraham is the first project from new film development company Jacob Films set up by Green and Jewish News. It is dedicated to “making content that challenges, entertains and surprises as well as giving a face and voice to those who are often unseen”.
Jewish News co-publisher Justin Cohen, who was co-executive producer on the film, said: “Following hot on the heels of our photography project with the Duchess of Cambridge and several landmark interfaith projects, this is the latest innovative avenue through which JN is becoming far more than just a newspaper.”
He added: “A huge thanks to Israel-is, the cast, the incredibly dedicated crew in the UK and Israel, our social media agency 8Original and all those who made this project a reality.”
To stream the film, book a screening or find out more, visit www.findingabraham.com. Download the soundtrack Peace and Love on Spotify.