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Israel boycotts film festival over Foxtrot screening

Israel boycotts film festival over Foxtrot screening
From Al Jazeera - February 13, 2018

Israel is boycotting a film festival in Paris which plans to screen "Foxtrot", an acclaimed drama which depicts the Israeli army covering up the deaths of Palestinian teenagers.

Israel's embassy in France will not attend the March 13 opening ceremony of the Israeli Film Festival, when director Samuel Maoz's movie will be screened, because organisers ignored advice to find a "more suitable" picture for the event "which will include an audience of Jewish donors", Israel's foreign ministry said.

According to The Times of Israel, the statement said: "The festival's management, due to its own considerations, chose not to accept the recommendation. Therefore, the foreign ministry ordered the ambassador not to be present at the opening ceremony."

In an interview with Haaretz on Monday, festival director Helene Schoumann said: "I really love the movie. I do not see anything against Israel whatever ... So I wo not cancel it. Of course not."

Foxtrot wasnominated to represent Israel in the foreign-language Oscar race, won the Grand Jury Prize Silver Lion at the Venice International Film Festival in 2017 and has a score of 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie review website.

Miri Regev, Israel's cultural minister, has targeted the film several times in statements and interviews, saying Foxtrot was "boosting BDS and Israel's enemies" and showed "Israeli army soldiers in a deceptive manner as murderers and harms the good name of the Israel Defence Forces."

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