‘Asia,’ ‘Here We Are’ among Ophir nominees

Sixty films were considered for awards in 18 categories.

 (photo credit: DANIELLA NOWITZ)
(photo credit: DANIELLA NOWITZ)
Normally, the Israeli Academy of Film and Television would be holding the Ophir Awards ceremony for the best films about now, but nothing is normal this year due to the pandemic, and on Tuesday, the academy announced its nominees for the 2020 prizes.
The date and format of the awards ceremony has not yet been decided.
Sixty films were considered for awards in 18 categories. The winner of the Best Picture Award will go on to become Israel’s official selection for consideration for a Best International Feature Oscar.
The five films nominated for the Ophir Award for Best Picture are Africa by Oren Gerner, which tells the story of an ailing father and his son, which won three awards at the Haifa International Film Festival in 2019, including Best Film; Aspiration for Life by Matan Guggenheim and Assaf Aviri, about an elderly man placed in a nursing home against his will who gets involved in crime and medical cannabis; Nir Bergman’s Here We Are, a drama about a father and his autistic son on a road trip, which was accepted into the Cannes Film Festival this year; Ruthy Pribar’s Asia, about a complicated mother-daughter relationship, which won several prizes at the Tribeca Film Festival; and Ram Loevy’s The Dead of Jaffa, about an Arab family haunted by the past.
The nominees for Best Actor are Shlomo Bar-Aba for Aspiration for Life; Shai Avivi for Here We Are; Yussuf Abu-Warda for The Dead of Jaffa; Meir Gerner for Africa; and Shadi Mar’i, who starred on Fauda, for This Night.
The nominees for Best Actress are Alena Yiv for Asia; Joy Rieger for Aspiration for Life; Nelly Tagar for Paris Boutique; Naama Preis for God of the Piano; and Ruba Blal Asfour for The Dead of Jaffa.
Shira Haas, who was just nominated for an Emmy for the television series Unorthodox, and who won the Best Actress Award at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival for her performance in Asia, was nominated in the supporting actress Ophir category for that film.