Funds scrapped for pro-Palestinian film

Support frozen after revised script compares W. Bank occupation to Holocaust.

jonathan sagall lipstikka 311 (photo credit: Screenshot)
jonathan sagall lipstikka 311
(photo credit: Screenshot)
The Israel Film Fund on Tuesday decided tosuspend funding for a film by an Israeli director that reportedlycompares the occupation of the West Bank to the Holocaust.

The decision came as Israeli leaders were heading to Europe on the eve of International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

The film Lipstikkawas created by Israeli actor and director Jonathan Sagall to portrayhis mother's experience in the Holocaust. Sagall, who starred in thepopular 1978 Israeli film Eskimo Limon, received funding forthe project five years ago and later decided to transport his mother'stale to Ramallah, where instead of the Nazis, two girls struggleagainst the Israeli occupation.
The controversial treatment first came to light after Israeli columnist Yair Lapid wrote an article in last Friday's Yediot Aharonot in which he quoted a passage from a brochure he had received, advertising Lipstikka:
"Ittook a lot to convince the Israel Film Fund that the occupation isworse than Israel has ever admitted to and that it is possible tocompare the occupation to the Holocaust."
After Lapid's column was published, the IFFannounced that it was freezing its support of the film, which had beenslated to receive NIS 1.3 million in state funds, NIS 850,000 of whichhad already been invested in the production.

Israel Radioreported Tuesday that the decision to suspend funding came following adirect request from Minister of Culture and Sports Limor Livnat.

TheIFF has also denied any connection to the brochure and its wording. TheIFF further said that when it had approved the funding, the script ithad received had not presented the same comparisons as those describedin the brochure.

An article from last year on described the movie as"a psychological thriller about the lifelong emotional and sexual bondbetween two Palestinian women."