Jewish National Fund-USA launches fund to boost Israeli TV and film storytelling

In partnership with Israeli TV veteran Nati Dinnar, an initiative is set to be Israel's largest fund dedicated to supporting TV and film production in communities hardest hit on Oct. 7.

Film camera. Credit: Jacqueline Macou/Pixabay.
Film camera. Credit: Jacqueline Macou/Pixabay.

Jewish National Fund-USA has unveiled a groundbreaking fund anticipated to reach $3 million that will be dedicated to bolstering and showcasing Israeli television and film storytelling in partnership with Israeli TV veteran Nati Dinnar. Highlighting its commitment to the Otef Israel “Israel Envelope” region, which was hardest hit on Oct. 7, the fund will prioritize productions centered in this area, filmed within its borders, or employing crew members from the local community.

This initiative stands as Israel’s largest fund dedicated to supporting both TV and film productions, representing a significant investment in the Israeli entertainment industry and offering a global platform for authentic, dynamic and diverse narratives from Israel.

Managed in collaboration with Dinnar, the co-founder & CEO of IZZY, the fund aims to empower Israeli creators by removing financial barriers to filming productions. Through this initiative, Jewish National Fund-USA will progress its strategic vision for Israel’s southern frontier communities by fostering economic and creative advancements while engaging local talent and enterprises.

With an initial investment commitment from Jewish National Fund-USA, the fund will operate on a dollar-for-dollar matching basis with local TV operators and producers, ensuring an anticipated minimum of $6 million worth of top-tier content per year. This content will be distributed both domestically and internationally.

Future funds are being explored with other philanthropic partners, focusing on different themes, genres, locations and subject matters.

The initiative seeks to establish a self-sustaining cycle of investment, production and reinvestment, ensuring enduring support for Israeli content creation. By backing diverse projects, it aims to showcase authentic Israeli stories on a global stage, resonating with international audiences through active involvement in the distribution process.

Russell Robinson, CEO of Jewish National Fund-USA, said “this initiative complements our unparalleled philanthropic investments in Israel’s frontier regions. It represents a transformative venture that will shed light on Israel’s authentic spirit and narratives to audiences worldwide. We are proud to be part of this groundbreaking project, which we believe will significantly influence global perceptions by showcasing the ‘positive Israel’ we all know and appreciate. We are delighted to partner with Nati, who brings a wealth of experience in Israeli TV and is an avid advocate for Israel.”

Nati Dinnar, interim managing director and CEO of IZZY, said, “Israel possesses a wealth of talented storytellers and a rich mosaic of cultures and stories. However, global perceptions of Israel often reflect filtered views shaped by news, religion, conflict and stereotypes. Presently, governmental cultural funds in Israel primarily cater to film, leaving television creators with limited support.

“The launch of this fund is therefore a monumental step for Israeli storytelling,” he continues. “This fund provides an exciting opportunity to share our unique narratives with international audiences, breaking down barriers and fostering a deeper understanding of Israel’s culture and diversity. I am honored to partner with Jewish National Fund-USA on this initiative fully aligned with my role and mission as IZZY CEO. Jewish National Fund-USA support will be instrumental in achieving this vision.”

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Jewish National Fund-USA builds a strong, vibrant future for the land and people of Israel through bold initiatives and Zionist education. As a leading philanthropic movement, the organization supports critical environmental and nation-building activities in Israel’s north and south as it develops new communities in the Negev and Galilee, connects the next generation to Israel, and creates infrastructure and programs that support ecology, people with disabilities, and heritage site preservation, all while running a fully accredited study abroad experience through its Alexander Muss High School in Israel.
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