The Writer


Cinearts at Palo Alto Square Sat, Jul 23, 2016 4:30 PM
Castro Theatre Sun, Jul 31, 2016 5:30 PM
Roda Theatre Mon, Aug 1, 2016 6:15 PM
Smith Rafael Film Center Sat, Aug 6, 2016 12:15 PM
Film Info
Director(s):Shai Capon
Screenwriter(s):Sayed Kashua
Year of Production:2015
Running Time:71 min.
Language(s):Hebrew w/ English subtitles
Categories:TV Series
Premiere Status:US
Genre-Subject:Television Series
Israelis & Arabs


Co-Sponsored by Michael Bien and Jane Kahn and by Deborah Blank and made possible with a generous grant from the Fohs Foundation.

Critically acclaimed Israeli Arab journalist and writer Sayed Kashua (writer of the hit TV series Arab Labor, SFJFF 2008–13), sharpens his quill once more and delivers a masterfully nuanced dramatic series about Kateb (Yousef Sweid), a 40-year-old Israeli Arab writer, who is struggling with an identity crisis. Kateb faces many of the same challenges that Kashua has faced in real life: trying to achieve peaceful coexistence between secular and orthodox people, navigating the pleasures and pitfalls of a long-term marriage and the complexity of being a Palestinian who works in the media. Despite his success, Kateb finds himself butting up against the subtle racism of Israeli society and the TV industry. Chock full of funny moments and perceptive insights into Israeli culture, The Writer— a more mature series than Arab Labor—poses the question: What is left for a creative Israeli Arab writer after the success of a phenomenon like Kashua’s award-winning TV show Arab Labor? When Kateb tells Shai Kapon, the director, onscreen, “I want to do new things,” Kapon responds, “It won’t be easy for you to find something else.” Thankfully The Writer is exactly that; something very smart and new, a cross section of fallible characters who live and work, with grace and clumsiness, in Israel’s intricate and multifaceted society. —Nancy K. Fishman

Writer Sayed Kashua in person in San Francisco and Berkeley