The Howard Gilman Award for the Best Israeli Film


Rachel Leah Jones and Philippe Ballaiche

70,000 NIS Prize
Courtesy of Howard Gilman Israel Culture Foundation, supported by Glikson Camera Rental and Edit Studios
The Best Israeli Film is also eligible for a marketing grant, supported by and courtesy of the Israel Lottery Council for Culture & Arts of 150,000 NIS

Jury’s justification: The Best Israeli Documentary Film is a thought-provoking project that combines an important issue with high quality cinematic skills, particularly an innovative and clever use of animation. Just as importantly, the film profiles an unforgettable, powerful, and inspiring woman of deep conviction in all her complexity. For their ability to capture this exceptional figure, who sees hope where others find only futility, the Best Israeli Documentary Film Award goes to the film Advocate by Rachel Leah Jones and Philippe Ballaiche.

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The Yossi Kaufmann Award for Best Director

Leftover Women

Shosh Shlam and Hilla Medalia

25,000 NIS prize Courtesy of Makor Foundation for Israeli Films

Jury’s justification: A heartfelt and clever choice of characters combining emotion and humor with precise visual style, the directors depict an intimate portrait of their Leftover Women that creates a lasting impression.

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Special Jury Award

Once Upon a Boy

Uri Levi

20,000 NIS prize Courtesy of Harel Insurance Investments and Financial Services

Jury’s justification: The Special Jury Award goes to a film that skillfully captures the intimate dynamics of a family with a child who has special needs. Displaying great sensitivity, while also taking a remarkably honest approach, the filmmaker offers deep insight into all of the members of the family, the challenges they must address, and the sacrifices they make for the sake of all.

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The Mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo Award for Best Debut Film

Mussolini’s Sister

Juna Suleiman

30,000 NIS prize Courtesy of Mayor of Tel-Aviv Yafo

Jury’s justification: In a perfect balance of content and form, this film manages to show the human condition acted out on just a few square meters. In a film both heavy and light, the director shows a clear vision of how to frame a timeless character in a consistent and deliberate way.

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Best Cinematography Award

Mussolini’s Sister

Juna Suleiman

7,000 NIS prizeCourtesy of KAN – IPBC

Jury’s justification: Within the limitations of a given space, the cinematographer and director of this film manages to create sets, which serve as small theaters for the daily lives of the characters. In a sparse and functional manner, the unremarkable atmosphere is elevated to the cinematic space: at times plain and stifling, with an occasional ray of sunlight reaching the screen and the viewer.

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Best Editing Award

Leftover Women

Joel Alexis

7,000 NIS prize Courtesy of KAN – IPBC

Jury’s justification: With great pace and thoughtfulness, utilizing music and sound, the editing wisely juxtaposes three female character storylines to create an exceptional and complete narrative.

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Research Award

There are no Lions in Tel Aviv

Carmit Sapir Weitz and Galia Dror

7,000 NIS prize Courtesy of KAN – IPBC

Jury’s justification: For their skill in conducting an archaeological dig beneath the stones of the city to uncover the surprising and forgotten history of the Tel Aviv Zoo, and their role in bringing back to life its colorful characters and long-vanished animals.

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International Competition Winners

Best International Film Award


Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov

20,000 NIS prize Courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Sport – The Israeli Film Council

Jury’s justification: The Jury decided unanimously to award a film which depicts a community living on the margins of society. Thanks to staggering narrative and cinematography, the film goes far beyond being a social document and becomes a fascinating portrait of an extraordinary woman. The Jury was moved by the intimate meditation on the fragility of human existence in its profound connection to Nature.

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Special Mention

Midnight Traveler

Hassan Fazili

Jury’s justification: The jury decided to give a special mention to a film which manages to document from within the frightening journey of a persecuted family from Afghanistan, fighting for their liberty and dignity.

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Depth of Field Competition

Artistic Vision Award


María Silvia Esteve

10,000 NIS prize Courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Sport – The Israeli Film Council

Jury’s justification: Truly authentic and brave, the film shares personal archives utilizing an original cinematic device, questioning stylistic structures such as the commentary and the flashback. By using memory, the director created different views and experiences of an intimate reality, intertwining her position with that of her sisters. In doing so, the film succeeded in breaking several dichotomies, such as History with a capital H and personal histories, both private and public, what is meant to be universal, reaching the following conclusion: our deep intimate lives are in fact unmistakably shared by individuals far from us, whether geographically, generationally, or otherwise.

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Special Mention


Itay Marom

Jury’s justification: For its level of devotion to the medium of cinema, for the capability of presenting such a specific universe, that of opera singing, in a generous but also delicate manner that is never spectacular per se. Furthermore, the film focuses on the specific relationship between mentor and pupil, going beyond what is apparent, while revealing complex dynamics and interactions. Last but not least, the cinematography juxtaposes scenes dominated by human presence with moments in which the architecture plays a double role, as intermezzo, without renouncing the film to its own beauty.

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Shorts Competition Winner

Best Short Film Award


Martina Scarpelli

4,000 NIS prize Courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Sport – The Israeli Film Council

Jury’s justification: Armed with a finely crafted screenplay, razor-sharp content and sound design as detailed and as masterfully made as the imagery, the director traps us in a perfect, encapsulated cinematic world—a world that seduces and repulses, embraces and expels, its shape both circular and square. In this impressive feat of skill, she creates a language that successfully visualizes the struggle with and against self-harm.

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The winners of the Students Competition in Memory and Honor of Ruthi Gottesman

First Award

Shira Tama

Shir Hori Abu | Sapir College

10,000 NIS Prize Courtesy of Yoav Gottesman

Jury’s justification: Through the filmmaker’s access and point of view, she provides us with a unique perspective on a topic that is both timely and controversial. A sensitive coming of age story, which exposes the way ideology is passed on from generation to generation. The film is infused with compassion and criticism, while also allowing audiences to form their own opinions. In her smart cinematic approach, the director implies the unbearable similarity that exists between extremist groups.

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Second Award

The Silhouette of Braids

Rotem Dimand | The Jerusalem Sam Spiegel Film School

6,000 NIS Prize Courtesy of Yoav Gottesman

Jury’s justification: A moving and multilayered documentary about love, motherhood and the construction of memories. The filmmaker uses a clever cinematic structure to tell an intimate story about three generations of women. While the footage shows us an almost ideal and nostalgic family life, the voiceover creates an impression of listening in on a private conversation that reflects on the memories that remain.

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Third Award


Neta Shaked | The Jerusalem Sam Spiegel Film School

4,000 NIS Prize Courtesy of Yoav Gottesman

Jury’s justification: The film allows us to witness a location that’s constantly filled with loss from a very clean and elegant perspective. The static cinematography brings us closer to the experience of people who deal with grief on a daily basis. An accurate look on the circle of life.

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Student Scholarship for Excellence in the name of Moshe Lev in the field of Cinematography

Little World

Elina Mitelman | The NB Haifa School of Design

7,500 NIS Prize Courtesy of Dafna Lev

Jury’s justification: The cinematographer gives us a glimpse of a microcosm that exists inside a small apartment in a lesser-known area of Israel. Spiritual ceremonies, music, fantasy and broken dreams are all framed in one location and presented with great compassion and love.

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Student Scholarship for Excellence in the name of Moshe Lev in the field of Editing

Phantom Chairs

Maya Klar | The Steve Tisch School of Film and Television, Tel Aviv University

7,500 NIS Prize Courtesy of Dafna Lev

Jury’s justification: Smart editing that perfectly mixes archival material, animation and funny documentary scenes. A witty history lesson on how great social ideas become commodities for the few who can afford it. With only steel objects as protagonists, the editing keeps on taking new turns and surprising the audience.

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