Funded! This project was successfully funded on May 21, 2012.

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A place where beauty becomes a metaphor for much more

This film brings to the screen the diverse voices of women on the periphery of Israeli society. Eight such women – thrown together during the course of a school year at Tel Aviv’s oldest beauty academy -- are spotlighted is this 75-minute documentary.

Eva, the head teacher and driving force at the academy, represents the generation of refugees and survivors who immigrated to Israel after the Holocaust and were often shunned by the native-born Sabras. 

Nigerian-born Debby, an outstanding student at the academy, embodies the story of tens of thousands of other African refugees who have made their way to Israel in recent years, many of them living under constant threat of deportation.

The experiences of Irena, a cleaning woman who sees in this profession a step up in life, are typical of many other Russians who immigrated to Israel with great hopes over the past two decades only to become disillusioned soon after by the limited prospects in their new homeland.

Adina, airlifted to Israel as a baby from Addis Ababa, represents a generation of young Ethiopian Jews who successfully acclimated to life in their new homeland but are burdened by the responsibility of caring for parents greatly challenged by modern society.

Vietnamese-born Linh symbolizes the many non-Jewish women who have fallen in love with Israeli men over the years and left their homes and families to follow their hearts only to discover that their adopted homeland was not at all eager to embrace them.

Bubbly Zehava, a grandmother seeking new direction in life after surviving breast cancer, typifies the Sephardi working-class woman in her directness and warmth. Her teacher and confidante, Anna, an immigrant from Kazakhstan, is also recuperating from breast cancer, but as a newcomer to Israel, lacks the support system Zehava enjoys.

Raheli, a young single mother whose husband was killed in a terror attack, represents the many Israeli women whose lives have been directly touched by the Middle East conflict but, after being initially embraced by society, are left behind to pick up the pieces on their own. The stories of all these women come to light as they meet and interact at the beauty academy, a microcosm of modern Israeli society.

It is a place where women find their strength and empower one another and where beauty becomes a metaphor for much more.

So how can you help us, and where will your contributions go?

The shooting of our film is completed, but in order to finish post-production and get the film out there to the public, we need about $7,500 in funding. Your donations will allow us to purchase the rights to the broadcast news clips that are critical to providing context to several of the stories in the film and will enable us to pay for color correction work, sound mixing and subtitling.

Should we succeed in raising more than our goal of $7,500, we would use that extra money to finance our marketing and distribution activities -- all aimed at reaching the international audiences we believe are out there for this film. These activities include creating a website for the film, producing DVDs and setting aside a budget for film festival submissions and travel.

Based on initial feedback from professionals, we have good reason to believe this film will resonate with audiences around the world, as it tells a story of coexistence – one that plays out in a rather unusual, quirky setting – in a part of the world more often associated with conflict and violence. “From the Black You Make Color” presents a slice of life in Israel that will not only surprise general audiences, inclined to view Israel as a very homogeneous society, but will also come as news to many in the country, who have never seen from the inside a place where coexistence comes as naturally and where politics does not step foot.

The universal appeal of this film also lies in its focus on experiences shared by people around the world, whether they be war widows, cancer survivors, or migrants and refugees forced to leave behind their loved ones. The stories of the specific characters spotlighted here, all struggling women who learn pick up the pieces and move on when life challenges them, are particularly compelling and inspiring.

Your donations will help us tell these stories that might otherwise not be heard.

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