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Controversial documentary, ‘Advocate,’ nominated for two Emmy awards

CM 28/07/2021 1

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Advocate, a film by Rachel Leah Jones and Philippe Bellaiche about controversial lawyer Lea Tsemel, who has defended terrorists, was nominated for two categories of News and Documentary Emmy Awards, which were announced on Wednesday: Best Documentary and Outstanding Politics and Government Documentary.

The film was broadcast on US television by POV, the independent documentary showcase that presents films on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). 
The film has repeatedly been the focus of controversy in Israel. In 2019, it won the top prize in the Israeli competition at Docaviv, the Tel Aviv International Documentary Festival. Following the win, Mifal Hapais announced it would reconsider funding future prizes at Docaviv after bereaved families of terror victims protested.
The film was set to be screened at the Docaviv Galilee festival in 2019 at a municipal auditorium in Ma’alot Tarshiha, but then-mayor Arkady Pomeranets canceled the screening. The move was applauded by former culture and sports minister Miri Regev. The film, however, was still screened at the festival but in a different auditorium.
While families of terror victims have repeatedly protested the film, others have pointed out it shows that in the Israeli justice system, even those accused of terrorism are entitled to be defended.

The Emmy Awards ceremony for News and Documentary content will take place on September 28 and September 29 will be broadcast live around the world.
Jones and Bellaiche, said in a statement released by Hot 8, which broadcast the film in Israel: “It is a great honor for us as international filmmakers to receive such recognition from our colleagues in the United States, following the broadcast of the American version of the film as part of the leading documentary series of the Public Broadcasting Corporation. Thanks to them, the film, and especially its content, reached 200 million screens across North America.”

Source: Jerusalem Post

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