Tel Aviv's 13th annual Docaviv film festival will open this year with a foreign rather than Israeli film, for the first time in a decade. The festival will kick off May 12 with "Life in a Day," a composite of clips filmed by users of the video-sharing website YouTube, who all captured a day in their life on the same day. The documentary was directed by Kevin MacDonald and produced by Ridley Scott.
"This year, as every year, Israeli documentaries are at the core of the festival," said Sinai Avet, who five months ago replaced festival founder Ilana Tsur as artistic director. "But we wanted to draw special attention to the thrilling innovations in documentary filmmaking and 'Life in a Day' is a wonderful example. We believe this is the kind of project that can draw new audiences to the genre."
Another foreign film that will be screened at this year's festival is "Exit Through the Gift Shop," directed by the British street artist known as Banksy, who has concealed his true identity for years.
Banksy points the camera at Thierry Guetta, who has for years documented the street art scene and is the only one who has ever managed to capture Banksy on film. The movie presents Guetta's story, alongside the story of street art.
Docaviv, Israel's premier documentary film festival, is held every spring at the Tel Aviv Cinematheque. It hosts several competitions, including among Israeli documentaries, foreign films, student films and high school films. The festival also includes provides audiences an opportunity to meet documentary filmmakers, as well as professional meetings between filmmakers.
The first festival, held in 1999, screened 46 films, lasted for four and a half days, and drew 5,000 viewers. Today the festival lasts 10 days, screens some 80 films, and has spread from the cinematheque to the Tel Aviv Museum, the ZOA house and the Tel Aviv Port. Some 30,000 people attended Docaviv last year.
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