Tel Aviv International Student Film Festival 2022

Night Stroll/Photo: May Abadi Grebler

The 24th edition of the Tel Aviv International Student Film Festival (TISFF) will take place from June 12 – 18, 2022. Guests of honor at the festival are some of the industry’s most intriguing filmmakers, including: Academy Award winning Chilean director Sebastián Lelio (A Fantastic Woman, Gloria), French director Mia Hansen-Løve (Bergman’s Island, Things to Come), Catalan director Albert Serra (Freedom, The Death of Louis XIV), Georgian writer and director Nana Ekvtimishvili (My Happy Family, In Bloom), German director Angela Schanelec (Marseille, I Was Home, But), the Turkish cinematographer Gökhan Tiryaki known for his work with Nuri Bilge Ceylan (Once Upon a Time in Anatolia), and musician Para One (Jean-Baptiste de Laubier), who composed the scores for the films of Céline Sciamma. 85 films from 21 countries will participate in the festival’s competitions, including, for the first time, a student film from Iran which will participate in the International Competition. The festival is an all-volunteer effort, produced and run by students of The Steve Tisch School of Film & Television at Tel Aviv University.

Sebastián Lelio /Photo: Nicolás Abalo

The festival will open on June 12th at Gan HaPisga in Yafo with screenings of three short films – all winners of the pitching competitions from the last two festivals. All three focus on themes of sexual abuse, each from a different perspective. The opening ceremonies will be hosted by actor Netta Garty. The films are:

Love has nothing to do with it, written and directed by Yotam Knispel, starring Hannah Azoulay Hasfari. The film was developed in the context of the 2021 Shorts on the Way project, a joint initiative of TISFF and the Gesher Multicultural Film Fund. Synopsis: Rina can’t look into the eyes of her son, Dean. She has until tomorrow to decide if she will remain on his side. Today, she will have to look in his eyes and hear the truth.

Pleasures of the Flesh in the Sun/Photo: Maayan Toledano

Pleasures of the flesh in the sun, written and directed by Oshri Zeituni. The film was developed in the context of the 2021 Shorts on the Way project. Synopsis: In a nature preserve on the Mediterranean coast, 16-year-old Odelya floats, wearing a gold bathing suit that is too big for her. The sound of boys singing catches her attention, as if it was a promise to comfort her loneliness. A tender and stormy portrait of youth in which Odelya learns that she has only herself in the world.

Your Bad Animals, an animated film by Ido Shapira and Amit Cohen. The film was developed in the 2020 Short Animation pitching event, an initiative of TISFF in collaboration with the Makor Foundation for Israeli Film and Television. Synopsis: Rachel, a young, rebellious mouse who lives with her depressed mother in an underground tunnel, starts dating the most dangerous animals in town.

The Tel Aviv International Student Film Festival and the Tel Aviv Municipality will present the “Creating Streets” project. Over the past year, the municipality has inaugurated 9 streets and new institutions named after great women in Israeli culture – actors, singers, directors and other creative artists. The honorees are: Ahuva Ozeri, Shoshana Damari, Hannah Maron, Ofra Haza, Anda Amir, Ronit Elkabetz, Zaharira Harifai, Yaffa Yarkoni, and Dvora Omer. At the start of 2022, 9 young filmmakers were invited to embark on a cinematic journey. They researched their subjects with the artistic guidance of filmmaker Batel Moseri, and created short, 2 – 4-minute films inspired by these cultural heroines. The resulting 9 films include features, documentaries, and one animated film.

The Fourth Wall/Photo: Mahboobeh Kalaee

The festival will hold five competitions: the Israeli Competition, the International Competition, the Short Independent Film Competition, the Experimental Film & Video Competition and the International Digital Media Competition. The films of 29 students from 8 different film schools have been selected to participate in the Israeli Film Competition. 36 films from 19 different countries have been selected to participate in the International Competition. Among them is The Fourth Wall, directed by Mahboobeh Kalaee, marking the first time that a student film from Iran will participate in the festival. 12 films will participate in the Short Independent Film Competition, and 9 in the International Digital Media Competition.

This year, the festival will host a special event on the topic of Sex in the Cinema. Directing sex scenes raises many questions, not only for students learning their craft, but for experienced directors as well. How does one protect the actors, who are so exposed in front of the camera, while retaining fidelity to the film’s vision? What are the different artistic approaches to directing intimate and sexual scenes? What are the boundaries? An open discussion on these topics will take place with the participation of screenwriter and director Hagar Ben Asher (The Slut, The Burglar), screenwriter and director Hagai Levi (In Treatment, Scenes from a Marriage) and the first Intimacy Coordinator in Israel – Erga Yaari. The discussion will be moderated by Ori Aharon.

Updates and additional information on the upcoming festival will be available from Midnight East, and on the TISFF website: