Sportfilm Festival: Haifa Cinematheque August 15 – 18 2012

Pink Skies

Calling all Sports Fans!!! The Haifa Cinematheque will present the SPORTFILM – the Israeli International Sports Film Festival from August 15 – 18, 2012. Feature and documentary films will be accompanied by lectures and panel discussions, providing insight into the world of sports – on the playing fieldand behind the scenes.  The festival is produced with the cooperation of the FICTS (Federation International Cinema Television Sportifs) and will include films on diverse branches of sports, including: football, surfing, sky diving, rugby, boxing and baseball.

If you are not a sports fan, the fascinating array of films and events at the festival may change your mind, or at least provide some food for thought as well as entertainment. Sports are an integral part of our culture, permeating all aspects of our lives with action, excitement, and inspiration. The love of a sport, playing on the same team or rooting for the same team can create an instant bond between strangers, while rivalry and competitiveness can also have their darker downside.

The Best Coach in the World – Jose Mourinho

Opening night on Wednesday, August 15, 2012 will feature a panel discussion on “The Culture of Sport and the Will to Excell,” moderated by Moran Barak, chief editor of the Sports News on the Sports Channel; with Yankale Shahar, owner of Maccabi Haifa, Adv. Uri Shilo, CEO of the Football Association; International Referee Liran Liani; Itamar Tsizik, CEO of the Maccabi Haifa Club; and Efraim Gabay, CEO of HaPoel Haifa. The discussion will be followed by a screening of “The Best Coach in the World – Jose Mourinho,” telling the story of the legendary football coach of Real Madrid.

Discussions on Thursday, August 16th will address the issue of “Achievements” with the participation of leading Israeli football players and an Olympic panel on the topic of “Medals and National Morale” with the Heads of the Israeli Olympic Committee and Olympic athletes. On Friday, August 17th leading Israeli Sports Commentator Avi Meller will talk about football fever – on the field and on the screen.

The full program of exciting sports films is available on the festival site in English and check for updates on the Sportfilm facebook page.  Some highlights:

Munich 72

Munich 72 – Moshe Laniado Peleg’s film documenting the return of seven survivors return as a delegation to the grounds where 11 Israeli athletes were slain at the 1972 Munich Olympics, will be screened in the presence of the director.

Le Nid (2010) – A docu-fiction film telling the story of St. Hilaire de Touvet, a village where flying is as natural as breathing. Directed by Antoine Boisselier, Christopher Tong Viet, Nicolas Assael, produced by Seven Doc – Parateam.

Miguel’s Haka – an inspiring documentary about Miguel, a 15 year old boy with autism who plays rugby for Grupo Desportivo do Direito; directed by Jaime Cravo, produced by Fernando Vaz.

Pink Skies (2011) – a film about sports & empowerment, directed by Gulcin Gilbert – 181 women from 31 countries “jumped for the cause,” creating a World Record All-Women’s Skydiving Formation and raising almost a million dollars in the process!

God Went Surfing with the Devil (2011) – a documentary directed by Alexander Klein, looking at the interactions between Israelis, Arab-Israelis, and Palestinians, connecting – despite the conflict – through their shared love of surfing.

Admission to the films is 10 NIS. Haifa Cinematheque, 142 Hanassi Boulevard, Haifa, 04-8353529.

The Sportfilm Festival is a co-production of the Haifa Cinematheque and Dan Shiray, festival founder and director. Haifa Cinematheque Director: Avishai Kfir; CreativeDirector: Tomer Mann; Ethos Marketing: Ori Dror. Partners in the project include: The Israeli Olympic Committee, Ethos, The Football Association, The Sports Channel, The Israel Volleyball Association, The Ministry of Culture and Sport, The Haifa Municipality, The Haifa Municipal Authority for Sport and Leisure, The Haifa Immigration Absorption Authority.


  1. […] As one might expect in Israel, football is prominently featured, but the festival boasts a diverse line-up of films focusing on several different branches of sport, including surfing, boxing, sky-diving, baseball, basketball and more. The full list of films is available in English on the festival site. In addition to films, there will be panel discussions and lectures on topics relating sports to culture, as well as outdoor activities for the entire family organized by the Haifa Municipality. The festival will take place at the Haifa Cinematheque from August 15 – 18, 2012. Read more about the festival here. […]

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