(photo credit: Courtesy)
Renowned US film producer Steven Tisch donated $10 million to Tel Aviv University, it was announced on Thursday.
Tisch, best known for producing critically acclaimed films such as Forrest Gump, American History X and Snatch, made the donation to the university’s Film and Television department.
“Storytelling is critical to promoting dialogue and understanding – things that the world needs most,” said Tisch. “Tel Aviv University is at the forefront of this and it nurtures and develops the most creative and talented students, with diverse voices from all over Israel and the region.”
The funds aim to help increase the scope of the department’s activities and will be used towards upgrading the school’s curriculum, renovations of school facilities and purchasing state-of-the-art equipment. In addition, the donation will allow the department to offer fellowships enabling students to produce films on an unprecedented scale in an effort to help enhance the impact of Israel on film and television around the world.
University president Joseph Klafter said the contribution comes at a time of “unprecedented flourishing” of the film and television industry in Israel, which he credits to the creative graduates of the university’s department. He said the donation would help further revolutionize the school, to be named after Tisch, and will enhance its status worldwide.
“The commitment of Steve Tisch to the school provides a tremendous vote of confidence in the talent of our students and our faculty,” said Klafter.
“The school will greatly promote the training and academic knowledge in the field and moreover will strengthen the influence of Israel on film and television arts throughout the world,” he said.
Yaron Bloch, head of the Film and Television department, added that the film and television industry has undergone drastic changes in recent years with regards to the production, distribution, and viewing consumption.
“Our students, alumni and faculty are at the forefront of creation and research of these new trends. Steve Tisch’s contribution will allow us to deepen their impact and success on a local level and also on an international level,” he said.