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HEARAT SHULAYIM (FOOTNOTE), Joseph and Shlomo speak.


PRESS CONFERENCE at 64th Cannes Film Festival for: HEARAT SHULAYIM (FOOTNOTE, Israel, 2011) By director Joseph Cedar…

SUMMARY: “The story of a great rivalry between a father and son, both eccentric professors in the Talmud department of Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The son has an addictive dependency on the embrace and accolades that the establishment provides, while his father is a stubborn purist with a fear and profound revulsion for what the establishment stands for, yet beneath his contempt lies a desperate thirst for some kind of recognition. The Israel Prize, Israel's most prestigious national award, is the jewel that brings these two to a final, bitter confrontation.” Summary by Anonymous.

JOSEPH: This film was hard to make as it is a celebration of the next world. This movie does not deal with our national conflict. It is a very private story. It reflects how much we desire normality in our lives in Israel. My grandfather was a big researcher of Talmud who was survivor of Holocaust. Talmud teaches compassion. We lack compassion where we come from but we are hopeful it will come back. Usually the father is traditional and sons rebel. For this film the Kirah is a symbol and he is against symbols. He is looking for truth. For the father, the Talmud symbolizes deep religiosity and the son likes the spirituality. There is a big eye of difference between the two characters.

QUESTION: How complicated is it to make a movie in Israel?

JOSEPH: It is difficult to get a movie on the screen, regardless where it is filmed.

QUESTION: Why do you think the question of Truth is so important?

JOSEPH: What's more important than truth? There are things more important but my personal feeling is that there is nothing more important.

QUESTION: How important was the music in the film?

JOSEPH: Music was major part of the film. There exists a harmonious soundtrack to the characters. A big chunk of the film is without music but when it's there it's very important.

QUESTION: To Shlomo, how have people reacted to your role in the film?

SHLOMO: Many people didn't recognize me after screening and this is biggest compliment an actor can have. As an actor, you look for biggest change. In this film, there weren’t any filters. I could see myself in the characters that I play. I had to change body wise and vocally, etc. I hope I can have more roles like that. Normally I am a comedian, so to be an actor without masks is the energy I came to Cannes.

QUESTION: Can you speak about the journey and the meaning of ‘the word’ of the film?

JOSEPH: A big issue in film is whether a film can rely on a written word. A common assumption is that you should avoid written word in film. Being a doctor I realize that my audience is seeing my films only through the written word,however. So, I realized that we can use that as a tool to tell our story. Thus, we develop that aesthetic as a tool we can use.

QUESTION: Why the open ending? Why no resolution?

JOSEPH: in my mind there is a resolution but not necessarily on the father and son. In the broad sense the tension between fathers and sons is never resolved, its what makes society move forward. That part of the story has to stay unresolved, between one generation to another there has to be a gap that pushes one thing forward and result in progress.

SHLOMO: I need to just add one thing to what Joseph just said…For me, message of this movie is go reconcile with your parents while they are alive because if not it will haunt you for the rest of your life...

A footnote for FOOTNOTE... 

To that touching 'footnote' of the press conference by actor Shlomo, a few of the members of press broke into tears. A very touching moment in the conference room...


written by Vanessa McMahon, May 18, 2011

read more about film here:

HEARAT SHULAYIM, Joseph and Shlomo speak.: press conference

director Joseph Cedar: Hearat Shulayim

HeaRAT SHULAYIM, Joseph and Shlomo speak. 

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