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9th Seattle Jewish Film Festival

2004 Seattle Jewish Film Festival
March 13-21

The ninth annual Seattle Jewish Film Festival (SJFF) will be held March 13-21, 2004 at the Cinerama and Pacific Place Theatres in downtown Seattle. SJFF has developed from modest beginnings in 1995 to attract an annual audience of over 10,000 people, establishing itself as one of the countries premiere Jewish Film Festivals.

A weeklong celebration of film and culture, the Seattle Jewish Film Festival will feature over 20 films from all over the world. Presented by the American Jewish Committee, SJFF sets the scene for all members of the greater Seattle community to come together and share in the richness and diversity of Jewish culture.

SJFF prides itself on presenting not only the best Jewish-themed films, but insightful programming as well. Panel discussions and film forums take place throughout the festival hosted by visiting filmmakers and local community educators and leaders. It is this type of programming that has made SJFF the largest Jewish annual cultural event in the Northwest.

This year’s film line-up promises to be entertaining and enlightening. SJFF will be showing films from around the world, from France to Uganda, Ireland to Israel, Australia to Sweden. SJFF provides programming that emphasizes the vitality of the Jewish experience in every corner of the earth. As always we will be showing thought-provoking films intended to encourage the dialogue necessary to confront challenging issues. Some examples from this year’s line-up are Decryptage, Hiding and Seeking, and Forget Baghdad.

Of particular interest to this year’s festival is the fact that 2004 marks the 350th anniversary of the first Jewish settlement in America. To celebrate this milestone, filmmaker and curator Gregg Lachow has instituted SJFF’s Trailer Project, to capture the stories of some of the people in our community who represent the history and progress of Jewish communities in the United States. Each one to two minute film will be shown before a different festival screening, and will paint a small portrait of what it means to be Jewish in America.

As always, we will celebrate with an Opening Night Gala at the Cinerama, following our screening of The First Israeli in Space. This wonderful film highlights the life of Colonel Ilan Ramon, Israel’s first astronaut. The film does not focus on the Challenger accident, but rather on Ramon’s career as a hero and a leader in Israel and his motivation to go into space. The screening will be followed by a dessert and champagne reception catered by Dolce Europa Desserts. The First Israeli in Space will be repeated on Wednesday March 17 at the Pacific Place at 2:00 for our Free-for-Seniors matinee.

For Sunday’s VIP Night celebration, SJFF will host a VIP reception sponsored by Il Fornaio at the Pacific Place. The March 14th reception will be followed by the screening of Almost Peaceful, a film that tells the story of a group of WWII survivors working together in a tailor shop in Paris. This charming, gentle drama is one of the highlights of this year’s festival.

SJFF will host a Woody Allen Look-Alike contest before our screening of Broadway Danny Rose, arguably Allen’s best film, on Tuesday March 16th at 8:00 at Pacific Place. The fun will continue with our annual Bagel and Film Brunch at the Cinerama on Sunday March 21st. The films My Four Children and Welcome to the Waks Family will be preceded by a delicious catered brunch by Zatz Bagels, Matzoh Mama’s, Starbuck’s, and Catering by Phyllis.

Sunday’s Bagel Brunch films are both family oriented, and round out our Family Day theme with the help of our afternoon screening of Fiddler on the Roof. In keeping with tradition, Fiddler will be accompanied by a rousing sing-along, which has always been one of SJFF’s most popular events. Fiddler on the Roof is sponsored by Glazer’s Camera and Tree of Life Judaica and Books.

To close out this weeklong celebration of film and culture, SJFF will be showing the original film version of The Producers on Sunday March 21 at 7:00 at the Cinerama. In honor of this film, which laid the groundwork for one of Broadway’s biggest hits, one lucky audience member will win a Broadway-inspired night on the town for 2, complete with dinner, luxury hotel accommodations, and tickets to a touring Broadway show.

These are just some of the special events that will distinguish and define the 2004 Seattle Jewish Film Festival. Please stay tuned for more details regarding films, special guests, and panel discussions.


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