2022 SJFF Festival Live Zoom Chats

The Fourth Window Q&A

The Fourth Window poster

This event has been completed. You can view the recording of the February 9 @ 8:30 am Zoom chat regarding the film The Fourth Window by clicking the player to the right. 

Zoom chat regarding the late author Amos Oz, an Israeli writer, novelist, journalist, and intellectual, and the subject of the film “The Fourth Window“.

Date: Wednesday February 9, 2022
Time: 8:30 am PST

Panel Members:

Yair Qedar, Filmmaker. Israeli filmmaker and civil-rights activist Yair Qedar has directed over 20 films including The Hebrews — a documentary project on the Hebrew and Jewish literary canon, centered on filmic portraits of Hebrew writers from the 17th century to recent days.

Adar Cohen, Chair of the Teacher Education department at the Seymour Fox school of Education in The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Cohen is currently visit

Watch the recorded Zoom Chat by clicking below. You can enlarge the player to full screen by clicking on the square in the bottom right hand corner of the video.

Glickman Q&A

Glickman poster
Join us for a Zoom chat regarding the film Glickman. Date: Wednesday, March 2, 2022 Time: 12:00 pm. PST The film is an illuminating portrait of Marty Glickman, who overcame prejudice to forge a remarkable career in sports, setting the gold standard for athletes and sports broadcasters past, present, and future. Panel Members:
  • James L. Freedman, Filmmaker
  • Mike Luery, Moderator
James L. Freedman –  While a senior in high school,  James L. Freedman produced Marty Glickman’s late night radio program on WNEW in New York.  It was one of the first all sports call-in shows in the nation.  Mr. Freedman went on to produce UNICEF commercials before becoming a working writer in Hollywood for over 25 years.  In addition, he’s penned over one dozen pilots for CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX and UPN –- as well as feature scripts for Warner Brothers and 20th Century Fox.  Freedman was also the filmmaker for the film Carl Laemmle, shown by the SJFF in 2020. Mike Luery  – Retired award-winning reporter with 35 years of broadcasting experience, specializing in political, investigative, enterprise and sports reporting. Multi-media expertise in reporting for broadcast, Web and social media platforms. Author of the book Baseball Between Us: 16 Years. 32 Ballparks. 43,000 Miles. A Road Map to a Winning.

Watch the recorded Zoom Chat by clicking below. You can enlarge the player to full screen by clicking on the square in the bottom right hand corner of the video.

United States of Elie Tahari Q&A

The United States of Elie Tahari poster
Join us for a Zoom chat regarding the fashion designer Elie Tahari and the film “The United States of Elie Tahari“. Date: TBD Time: TBD The United States of Elie Tahari is a documentary about fashion designer and mogul Elie Tahari and his “American dream” story. This documentary tells Tahari’s whole journey from his move to America to his achievements and work process, featuring important fashion personalities. Panel Members:
  • David Serero, Filmmaker
  • Elie Tahari, Fashion Designer
  • Doris Pittell, Moderator
David Serero is a critically acclaimed and award-winning opera singer, actor, director, and producer. He has performed more than 2,500 performances in more than 45 countries, directed and produced nearly 100 theatrical productions, starred in over 100 films and TV series, recorded and produced over 100 albums and, played more than 50 lead and title roles (in several languages) from the opera, theatre, and musical repertoire. Elie Tahari began designing women’s fashion inspired by the New York City nightclub scene. After he succeeded in popularizing the tube top, Tahari began designing his eponymous label Tahari in 1973. From these humble beginnings, the globally-recognized brand now has a footprint on five continents across the world and is available in over 600 shops in over 40 countries. The brand has grown to include women’s clothing, shoes and cosmetics, and menswear, and has come to reflect chic style influenced by the designers with collections of understated beauty and elegance. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg proclaimed September 4, 2013, to be “Elie Tahari Day” in commemoration of his 40 years of business. Doris Pittell – While shopping for a “cocktail” dress at Hale’s Department Store, she was offered a part-time job in the department that had Morton Myles and Junior Sophisticate. After a few years, she dropped out of college and moved to Sacramento where her parents had moved. Pittell worked at Hale’s in Sacramento for a few years. In 1977, she and a friend began a clothing business called the Brown House, where they sold discount clothing. Eventually, it became a retail store and moved to various locations over the years. Pittell has carried Elie Tahari fashions. The Brown House is now celebrating its 45th anniversary.

With No Land

With No Land poster

Join us for a Zoom chat regarding the film “With No Land“.

Date: Tuesday, March 8, 2022
Time: 12:00 pm. PST

Panel Members:

  • Aalam-Warqe Davidian, Director/Producer
  • Kobi Davidian, Director/Producer
  • Beejhy Barhany, Entrepreneur and Activist
  • Darrell Steinberg, Mayor of Sacramento

Award winning script writer and director, born in 1979 in Awash, Ethiopia, Aalam-Warqe Davidian immigrated to Israel in 1991. She graduated from Sam Spiegel Film & Television School. In 2012 Aalam-Warqe along with Kobi Davidian co-funded Black and White films. In 2016 her short fiction film FACING THE WALL won Best Short Film at the 33rd Jerusalem International Film Festival. As her other short fiction film TRANSITIONS has screened in festivals around the world. Aalam-Warqe’s 2018 debut feature-length drama FIG TREE screened at the Toronto International Film Festival, where it won the Eurimages Audentia Award for Best Female Director. In 2021 her 83min, documentary WITH NO LAND has screened in Israeli public TV channel and starting its festival tour. HONEY TRAP her current documentary is still in production. 

Kobi Davidian, director and producer, was born in 1980 in Jerusalem, Israel. He graduated from the Arts and Cinema program at Tel Aviv University in 2006. Kobi has worked as a researcher and a producer for different TV shows and documentary films before starting his career as an independent filmmaker. In 2012 he co-funded Black and White films along with Aalam-Warqe Davidian. His documentary TURBULENCE (2011, 83min, YesDocu) and short fiction TRANSITIONS (2016) films were screened and won prizes in festivals around the world. In 2018, he produced and directed a testimonial archive, MEMORIES OF ETHIOPIA, for the Israeli national archive. In 2021 his 83min, documentary WITH NO LAND has screened in Israeli public TV channel and starting its festival tour. HONEY TRAP his current documentary is still in production.

Beejhy Barhany is an entrepreneur, and activist, who was born in Ethiopia, raised in Israel, and currently resides in New York.  At a very young age, she emigrated to Israel.  She acclimated to Israeli life, living in a kibbutz and joining the army.  Soon after she traveled across South America for a year, and again emigrated, this time to the US.  She is the founder of the BINA Cultural Foundation non-profit dedicated to celebrating and advocating for Ethiopian Jews in North America. Today, she is the chef and owner of an eclectic Ethiopian restaurant, Tsion Café, that incorporates cuisine from the many places that have been influential on her journeys.  

Darrell Steinberg is one of Sacramento’s most accomplished public servants, serving the Sacramento community for more than 30 years. When Tahoe Park was having trouble with gangs, the community organized and formed the Tahoe Park Neighborhood Association, electing Darrell Steinberg as its first President. In 1992, Steinberg was elected to the City Council, where he focused on making neighborhoods safe, creating good jobs, and providing quality after-school programs. Steinberg served in the State Assembly from 1998 to 2004, and in the State Senate from 2006 through 2014. He became President of the Senate in 2008. Steinberg championed economic development, education reform, building sustainable communities and major investments in healthcare and education. He authored the Mental Health Services Act, the first of its kind in the nation that generates more than $3 billion dollars a year for people in need.

Steinberg became mayor of Sacramento in 2016. As mayor, Darrell Steinberg has secured significant new resources to tackle difficult problems such as homelessness and economic inequity in Sacramento.

Darrell Steinberg and his wife, Julie, have two grown children, Jordana, and Ari. Darrell is a graduate of UCLA and UC Davis Law School. Julie Steinberg is the cantor at Congregation B’nai Israel.

Watch the recorded Zoom Chat by clicking below. You can enlarge the player to full screen by clicking on the square in the bottom right hand corner of the video.

Caregiver: A Love Story

Caregiver A Love Story poster
Join us for a Zoom chat regarding the film Caregiver: A Love Story“. Date: Thursday, March 10, 2022 Time: 7:00 pm. PST After four years of battling cancer, 60-year-old Bambi Fass had had enough. Though a natural fighter and optimist, when her cancer went metastatic, she saw the writing on the wall and decided to forego additional painful radiation treatment and instead live out her final weeks in the comfort of her own home. Her decision was supported by her husband Rick, who was reluctant to let go of a woman he had met only three years earlier. A journey that begins with song-filled community gatherings, however, soon turns challenging as Rick is left alone to care for Bambi in her final weeks. Panel Members:
  • Jessica Zitter, MD, MPH, filmmaker
  • Meg McClaskey, Chaplain, UC Davis Hospice
  • Rick Tash
  • Anne James
Dr. Jessica Zitter practices critical and palliative care medicine at a public hospital in Oakland, California. She is a passionate advocate for humanism in medicine, utilizing her broad platform as a speaker, writer, and producer of media. Dr. Zitter is the author of Extreme Measures: Finding a Better Path to the End of Life, which chronicles her personal evolution as a physician. It’s stories depict the burdens placed on patients and families as they approach the end of life in our ICUs and hospitals. Her work is featured in the Netflix short-documentary Extremis, which was nominated for an Oscar and two Emmys in 2017. She is also a regular contributor to The New York Times, and her articles have appeared in The Atlantic, Time Magazine, Journal of the American Medical Association, The Washington Post and many other publications. Dr. Zitter is the founder of the Jessica Zitter Media Project, a non-profit organization that uses storytelling to enhance the medical care of patients with serious and end-stage illness. Meg McClaskey is a Board Certified Chaplain and Medical Ethicist currently serving as a chaplain at U.C. Davis Medical Center’s Hospice. Having served in large hospitals as Director of Pastoral Care and Ethics Consultation, an Ethics Consultant and as medical school faculty, Meg has focused her work on assuring that patients and their families are heard. She has advocated that the voices, perceptions and beliefs of patients and caregivers be deeply respected.  Meg believes that supporting patients and caregivers through the final journey in this life is a privilege. Rick Tash is one of the subjects of Caregiver: A Love Story alongside his late wife Bambi Tash. Rick is an actuary with a penchant for analyzing risk. Luckily, his heart won out when he chose to marry the love of his life despite her cancer diagnosis. “It’s all about love,” he said. Rick lives in Oakland, California with his granddaughter Mya. Anne James is the social worker on the Palliative Care service at Oakland’s Highland Hospital. She has worked in Bay Area hospitals for 20 years providing support to patients with serious and end stage illness. Anne is the social worker who organized hospice services for Bambi.

Watch the recorded Zoom Chat by clicking below. You can enlarge the player to full screen by clicking on the square in the bottom right hand corner of the video.

Community Havdalah

Please join us for our 2nd annual Community Havdalah ceremony via Zoom. Havdalah is a Jewish service which marks the end of Shabbat and the transition into the new week!

Date: Saturday, March 12, 2022
Time: 7:30 pm PST

Participants: The Havdalah ceremony will be led by Rabbi Matt Friedman, President of the Sacramento Board of Rabbis, with participation from Rabbis from throughout the greater Sacramento region, and beyond.

A Tree of Life

A Tree of Life poster

Join us for a Zoom chat regarding the film A Tree of Life, and the events that motivated the filmmaker to produce this film.

Date: Monday, March 14, 2022
Time: 3:00 PM, PST

In Pittsburgh in 2018, a white supremacist opened fire at the Tree of Life Synagogue in the deadliest antisemitic attack in American history. The survivors recount the harrowing experience and detail how their lives have fundamentally changed. Executive Produced by Michael Keaton and Mark Cuban, and directed by Academy Award-nominated and Emmy-winning director Trish Adlesic, A Tree of Life confronts the “moral decay of humanity” and takes a larger look at the hate-based crisis stemming from the political climate. As the first film to document the survivor’s stories and the only documentary with this level of personal access to the survivors and families of the victims, viewers will experience first-hand how the lives of those directly affected have fundamentally changed and how the Pittsburgh community and the congregations set out on a path towards healing.

Panel Members:         

  • Trish Adlesic, Filmmaker and Moderator
  • Brad Orsini, Senior National Security Advisor, Secure Community Network
  • Audrey Glickman, Rabbi’s Assistant to Rabbi Seth Adelman, Beth Shalom
  • Susan Margolin, Producer
  • Barry Werber, Tree of Life attack survivor
  • Willie Recht, CEO, Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region

Trish Adlesic is an Oscar-nominated and Emmy-winning producer/director. A Pittsburgh native who was at her childhood home the day of the heinous attack, Trish teamed with Josh Fox and HBO to produce Gasland and Gasland II, which received an Academy Award nomination and won an Emmy. These seminal documentaries expose the environmental devastation and public safety hazards of “fracking.” Trish and Josh Fox led a diverse group of stakeholders to use the film to advocate for and then pass the first ban on fracking in America, in Trish’s hometown of Pittsburgh.

Brad Orsini joined the Secure Community Network (SCN) as the Senior National Security Advisor in January 2020. SCN is the official safety and security organization for the Jewish community in North America, formed under the auspices of The Jewish Federations of North America and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. In his role, Mr. Orsini  provides security consultations, training, and direct response to critical incidents to Jewish Communities across North America.

Audrey Glickman is a rabbi’s assistant, with prior experience in nonprofits, government, advertising, and as a legal secretary. A native Pittsburgher, Audrey has served on many boards, organizations, and committees, advocating for many causes, including equal rights, secure recountable voting, preserving the earth, good government, improving institutions, and understanding and tending to our fellow human beings. Ms. Glickman is a survivor of the Tree of Life attack.

Susan Margolin has built a reputation as a pioneer of home entertainment and digital distribution and a dedicated supporter of the independent filmmaking community. Her company, New Video, launched in 1992 with partner Steve Savage, became a leading global force in independent home entertainment. New Video’s library of films, television and web content, featured programming from leading brands including A+E, History Channel, Monty Python, Thames Television, Sundance Institute, Tribeca films, Major League Baseball and Scholastic.

Barry Werber was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After graduation he joined the U.S. Air Force. After his discharge, he came home to Pittsburgh. He is a survivor of the attack at the Tree of Life Synagogue.

Willie Recht is the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region. Having worked as a Jewish professional  for over a decade, Willie brings a wealth of Jewish communal and development experience, including positions with the: Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado, where he served as Major Gifts Officer and Women’s Philanthropy manager; and Keshet (formerly Jewish Mosaic) – where he started Colorado’s Queer Seder and Pride Shabbat. Willie and his husband Peter, and their two Frenchie’s Daisy & Winnie,, moved from Denver in 2015. Prior to the Jewish Federation, Willie was the Development Officer at The University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento. Willie has also served on the Board of the Sacramento LGBTQ Community Center and is a graduate of the American Leadership Forum, Class XXIV.

Watch the recorded Zoom Chat by clicking below. You can enlarge the player to full screen by clicking on the square in the bottom right hand corner of the video.

The Invisibles - Hosted by Congregation Bet Haverim

The Invisibles poster

Join Congregation Bet Haverim for a Zoom chat regarding the film The Invisibles.

Date: Sunday, March 27, 2022
Time: 2:00 PM, PST

While Joseph Goebbels infamously declared Berlin “free of Jews” in 1943, 1,700 managed to survive in the Nazi capital through the end of WWII. The Invisibles traces the stories of four young people who learned to hide in plain sight.  

Panel Members:       

  • Sylvan (Sy) Karfiol, retired software programmer, hidden child during World War II, and
  • Liz Igra, President, Central Valley Holocaust Educators’ Network, hidden child during World War II.

Pre-Recorded Zoom Chats from Other Festivals

Song Searcher - Courtesy of the Miami Jewish Film Festival

Song Searcher poster

Moyshe Beregovsky, musician and scholar, crisscrossed Ukraine from the 1920s on to record the traditional music of Ukrainian Jewry on fragile wax cylinders. With tremendous dedication in the face of the hardships Jews faced in Ukraine and under Soviet rule, Beregovsky saved the musical heritage of centuries-old Yiddish civilization, but ultimately paid for it with his life.

Panel Members:        

  • Lisa Segal, Cantor, Temple Beth Shalom, Miami Beach
  • Elena Yakovich, Director
  • Natalie Azarov, Producer
  • Victorina Petrossiants, Executive Producer

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

Neighbors - Courtesy of the Austin Jewish Film Festival

Neighbours poster

With a fine sense of humor and satire, the film tells of a childhood that, between dictatorship and dark drama, also has its light moments. How much friendship, love, and solidarity are possible in times of repression and despotism?

Panel Members:        

  • David Finkel, Director, Austin Jewish Film Festival 
  • Mano Khalil, Film Director

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

The Tiger Within - Courtesy of the Austin Jewish Film Festival

Tiger Within poster

In the final performance of his illustrious career, multiple Emmy Award-winning actor Ed Asner — who died in late August 2021 at the age of 91 — portrays Samuel, a Holocaust survivor who develops an unlikely bond with Casey, a homeless Midwestern teenager. This is the first movie for Margot Josefsohn, age 14, who portrays Casey.

Panel Members:        

  • David Finkel, Director, Austin Jewish Film Festival 
  • Rafal Zielinski, Film Director
  • Gina Wendkos, Screenwriter
  • Margot Josefsohn, Lead Actress

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

The Invisibles - Courtesy of the East Bay Jewish Film Festival

The Invisibles poster

While Joseph Goebbels infamously declared Berlin “free of Jews” in 1943, 1,700 managed to survive in the Nazi capital through the end of WWII. The Invisibles traces the stories of four young people who learned to hide in plain sight. Fred Rosenbaum places the German drama “The Invisibles” into its historic and cultural context, as he explores the Jews of Berlin then and now.

Panel Members:      

  • Riva Gambert, Director, East Bay Jewish Film Festival
  • Fred Rosenbaum, Author, Historian, Founder of Lehrhaus Judaica

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

Plan A - Courtesy of the Austin Jewish Film Festival

Plan A poster

In 1945, a group of Jewish Holocaust survivors develop a plan to poison the water system in Nuremberg, Germany. Based on actual events, this film tells the story of a dangerous and bold secret operation that the plotters called “Plan A.”

Panel Members:      

  • David Finkel, Director, Austin Jewish Film Festival
  • Doron Paz, Film Director
  • Yoav Paz, Film Director

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

1618 - Courtesy of the Miami Jewish Film Festival

1618 poster

This historical drama is based on a true story: the visitation by the Visitador Sebastião Noronha to Porto in 1618. At the time the entire population was exhorted to denounce heresies under pain of excommunication. In a city where a large part of the population had Jewish ancestry, over one hundred New Christians, among others, were imprisoned, causing terror in the New Christian community, mass emigration, and the near-total destruction of the city’s economy. With his family and community in danger, António Álvares devises an escape plan.

Panel Members:      

  • Genie Milgrom, Moderator, Miami Jewish Film Festival
  • Dara Jeffries, Writer/Director
  • Dr. Michael Rothwell, Director, Porto Holocaust Museum

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat

The Lesson - Courtesy of the Miami Jewish Film Festival

The Lesson Poster

At the age of 14, every school child in Germany is forced to confront the reality of the Holocaust, often for the first time. Filmed over five years, from 2014 to 2019, the film is a window into deeply rooted social and political attitudes in Germany amidst the resurgence of the far right, xenophobia, and a fractured, disparate collective memory of the nation’s history.

Panel Members:      

  • Carly Orshan, Director, Teen Engagement, Center for Advancement of Jewish Education, Miami
  • Elena Horn, Film director
  • Zeid Ra-ad Al Hussein, Film executive producer

Click below to watch the Zoom Chat