Controversy over Julian Schnabel's 'Miral' premiere

Miral-poster

Tonight Julian Schnabel’s new film, Miralabout an orphaned Palestinian in the wake of Israel’s 1948 war for independence — is due to premiere at the U.N. headquarters in New York City. But the American Jewish Committee is trying to shut it down. AJC Executive Director David Harris, in a letter to UN General Assembly President Joseph Deiss, states that the film has a “clear political message” which portrays Israel in a “highly negative light.”

Both Schnabel and distributor Harvey Weinstein (also both Jewish-Americans) were quick to respond: 

“I’m very proud that TWC is distributing Julian Schnabel’s Miral,” says TWC Co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein in a statement. “We pride ourselves on aligning our company with films that take risks and provoke dialogue. Miral is precisely that kind of picture. We are honored that it will have its premiere at the United Nations General Assembly hall, and it saddens me that some in the Jewish community are protesting this screening and judging Miral before they have had an opportunity to see it.”

Says Schnabel, in the official press release: “I love the State of Israel. I believe in it, and my film is about preserving it, not hurting it. Understanding is part of the Jewish way and Jewish people are supposed to be good listeners. But, if we don’t listen to the other side, we can never have peace.  Instead of saying ‘no,’ I ask the AJC to say ‘yes,’ see Miral and join the discussion.”

After tonight’s screening, there’ll be a panel discussion featuring Palestinian journalist Mona Eltahawy, Rabbi Irwin Kula, and former Israeli Air Force Captain and co-founder of Combatants for Peace, Yonatan Shapira, moderated by Dan Rather. Miral will be in select theaters March 25.

Comments (97 total) Add your comment
Page: 1 2 3
  • Aliza

    Did you mean after the 1948 War for Independence?

    • Nanners

      No.

    • Nanners

      Nope.

  • Nat

    Politics aside, this film is meant to be terrible (it has a 20% score on Rotten Tomatoes). Wouldn’t provoking dialogue be more productive with a film that was actually well-made?

    • j morran

      Rotten tomatoes wouldn’t know a meaningful movie if was run over by it. Obviously you buy your tools for existence from walmart.

      • Ronnie D.

        I saw the movie, and I can testify to it being bad. The dialogue is poorly written, the acting is half-ass, and the story is unfocused and incoherent; Schnabel’s worst by a long shot.

  • Tinny

    Here come the crazy jews again

    • Rose

      go f*** yourself

  • Milo

    Concerning Nat’s comment in relation to the Rotten Tomatoes percentage for the film, the percentage on the Rotten Tomatoes site is the calculation of a few film critics. Most of them are not well known. I’ll wait until Elvis Mitchell, Roger Ebert, A.O. Scott, Richard Roeper, Richard Corlis, Andrew Sarris, Michael Phillips, etc have reviewed the film. But until then, let’s stay away from the Rotten Tomato percentages.

    • Nat

      To be fair, I’m British, and the reviewers are mostly from pretty highly-esteemed British publications.

      • Milo

        I did read the David Hughes review from “Empire Magazine”. It was a positive review. But, beyond the reviews, I want to see the film myself before making irrational judgments on the film in the bases of the treatment of Israel or Palestine and the people that inhabit these two countries.

    • Pilar

      Trust me, it’s bad. Really corny and I liked Schnabel’s first movie. I was so bored I walked out. Not sure about all the controversy, sure it was terrible.

  • Hey Now

    As a Jew, I commend Schnabel for having the balls to make a film from the Palestinian perspective. The fact of the matter is that Israel is one of the most imperialistic countries in the world and what they have done to the people of Palestine is disgusting. Unfortunately, Israel has such a grip on the U.S. that no one from the mainstream press can say anything critical of them, because if they do they are automatically labeled an “anti-Semite” and blackballed. Remember that reporter that worked for the UPI, no one’s heard from her since. And as a Jew, I cant be called an anti-semite. More Jews need to speak out against Israel.

    • mark

      When I hear A jew like your, I think that Hitler was right

      • Voodoo

        Care to explain?

      • Irena

        Mark, keep your disgusting comments to yourself.

      • Joe

        go f… yourself Mark! You see? Real anti-semitism is actually in those who supposedly fight anti-semitism. As scary as it sounds.

      • Leanne

        I WOULD take offense to that remark, Marky. However, your poor use of grammar tells me all I need to know about your level intelligence. If you were unaware that your name is a proper noun and therefore should be capitalized, I doubt you can understand other basic concepts. All people are created equal, you f**k.

    • Joe

      To be honest, every Israeli film about war is very self-critical of government and the status quo (see: Waltz with Bashir, Beaufort, Lebanon). It’s social commentary, and most films are going to be progressive and push the envelope anyway. So while it’s good to have a Palestinian perspective (albeit played by an Indian woman…), Israeli films that enter the mainstream almost never portray Israel in a flattering light. So I don’t think your point really makes sense in this context.

    • Um

      Why does being a Jew make it impossible to be an anti-Semite? I’d say that’s exactly what you are. Do you even know what imperialism is? Get a clue.

      • Irena

        Being critical of the Israeli government makes one anti-semitic? Try to be at least a little rational.
        And FYI, Arabs come under Semites. I never got the point of using that term exclusively for Jews anyway.

      • northwoods

        Anti-semitic and self-hating Jew has become so trite when people critisize Israel. When do you start murdering people with this label?

    • muti

      Again another assimilated secular liberal Jew that hates Israel what else is new that an assimilated Jew is obsessed with israel, and will never condemn the Muslim terrorists and will only condemn israel for defending themselves. Are Jews killing innocent people around the world or are ur good Muslim friends killing innocent people and children around the world? I guess what could I expect from an assimilated self hating liberal Jew u suffer from the liberal mental disorder, go join the rest of the world that is obsessed with israel and condemns the Jewish state all the time go to ur friends at the un that condemn israel on a daily basis

      • ajji

        Take a deep breath now…that’s it. And before you jump on your soapbox, let’s get the rocks out of your head.

        The…er…’assimilated secular liberal Jew’ (gee, you make it sound as if that’s a bad thing) did not say that they ‘hate’ Israel, or that they ‘will never condemn Muslim terrorists’ or even that they ‘ONLY condemn Israel for defending themselves’ (defending themselves from people whose land they’ve usurped, and whom they’ve relegated to ghettos? nice!).

        Now for your question: ‘Are Jews killing innocent people around the world or are ur good Muslim friends killing innocent people and children around the world?’ The answer is, both are killing innocents, albeit in different ways, and not ALL Muslims or Jews, (or Christians, or Buddhists, or Hindus, etc) are killing people. Evil people are found in every faith, region, and community. So are good people. Deal with it.

        As for the rest of your infantile rant, I’ll just say: grow up. Nobody condemns the ‘Jewish state’ for existing, the criticism is duly incurred for the way it was created, and the unjust policies it adheres to.

        The United Nations, though? Lol. A little tongue lashing never hurt anybody. The UN knows it, USA knows it, and Israel most certainly knows it. That’s just a facade to keep the show going.

      • muti

        Yes ajji give me a specific example where a Jew went and stabbed a Muslim and her children to death? U will not encounter such savagery amongst Jews

    • Bentia

      Really, the mainstream press that did not report about the Jewish family that was stabbed to death in their beds last week by Muslims? That press? If it was the other way around you bet it would be all over the news.

      • israel

        it would never be the other way around Jews would never be that brutal and that savage, only Muslims are capable of committing such heinous and savaged terrorist attacks, Muslims are killing each other around the world, and yet when it comes to israel suddenly the only democratic country in the middle east , u have the world condemning israel and not the Muslim terrorist that are creating all the terrorism around the world

      • northwoods

        It has been all over the mainstream press especially how Israel is using it to their advantage to increase settlements and and incite against Palestinians with the graphic photos. Since it is not known who committed the crime this is rather sick. In Israel Palestinians are guilty until proven innocent. The settlers are violent thugs so anyone of them could have done it.

    • muti

      u could be called an anti semite because u dodnt practice judiams, most jews that condemn only israel are the jews that have no connection to judiasm they are so assimilated that they lost their jewish values, u will never encounter an orthodox jew that will only condemn israel like u regardless is they are a zionist or not, so yes u moron u are a self hating jew hater

      • ajji

        Wow. Let me get this straight: Orthodox jews are pre-programmed to love the state of Israel, no matter what, and they can NEVER condemn it? So, basically, they’re on the same evolutionary plane as, say, robots? No such words as ‘free will’ or ‘freedom of expression’ or ‘fair mindedness’ in their vocabulary, then?

        Well, one learns something new every day, I guess (unless you’re an orthodox Jew, that is).

      • israel

        ajji u didnt underdtand what i said, i said that the double standars when it comes to israel, that u will only encounter amongst liberal assimilated jews

      • northwoods

        Really, anyone who doesn’t practise Judaism is anti-semitic. I guess that makes 98% of the world anti-semitic automaticly.

    • Hi C

      and even more arabs need to speak out about their brothers’ twisted death cult islamic fascism, ie cutting the arms off women and children.

    • mia

      Mark you make me want to vomit.
      And I do not think your comments were in poor taste, Hey Now. You were stating your opinion. People should be allowed to stay negative things about a country without being called an anti-Semitic.

    • j morran

      right on

  • mark

    Lets wait for anoter movie, with the name for example “THE STORY ABOUT JEWISH PEOPLE AND ARABS ANIMALS” This massacry of all jewish famaly isn’t enogh for you?

    • Voodoo

      Wow, YOU just massacred the English all by yourself, my friend.

      • Voodoo

        *language

      • mark

        When british closed palestaine for jews,they were responcuble for holocost not much less rhen nazzis.
        And jews didn’t intantially kill british children.

      • mark

        “Palestinian perspective” or explanation how to murder a 3 month old baby and make the rest of the world to be on your side

  • Will

    God forbid we ever say something negative about Israel.

    • israel

      its worse when u sya something negative about the muslims they will kill u, or cut open ur throat, and yet u have these liberals that will defend these muslims when it comes to the israel and palestinian conflict

  • bre

    I’m glad they’re following through with showing the film. It’s important that they do so and a Palestinian perspective is shown. I look forward to watching the movie!

    And I insist you make a correction. Journalist Mona Eltahawy is an EGYPTIAN, not Palestinian! Come on, EW!

  • muti

    These barbaric Palestinian terrorists stabbed a whole family with their parents in middle of sleeping they killed a young child in the most barbaric way possible , Jews wouldn’t do this even to germens, only these savage Muslim terrorist are capable of being that heartless, and u have these liberal assimilated Jews that will only condemn israel, and not the Muslim terrorist, most of these so called liberal Jews have no connection to the Jewish religion and yet when it comes to condemn israel they are suddenly Jews that are condemning the Jewish state.

  • muti

    Let them show a film about how savage these Muslim terrorist are,
    And how much hatred against Jews is taught in the Palestinian schools, I never saw a film about this at the UN.

    • mark

      To make a critical movie about muslims could be dangerous. Another thing about Israel. They became herous for the rest off the World

      • northwoods

        Mark you are out of your mind. Two settler Rabbis recently wrote the
        popular book,”Torat Hamelech” which is a justification for Jews to murder non-Jews and even their babies pre-emptively since non-Jews are born “uncompassionate”. The crazed Rabbis are coming out of the woodwork in Israel with their views of a Jewish “master race”.

    • northwoods

      When Israelis Rabbis are publically calling for the anhilation of all Arabs, using Palestinian children as “human shields” does it really matter what’s taught in school. Since the settlers view non-Jews as sub-human
      I would love to hear their school curriculum.

    • Alloptionsonthetable

      Or, let’s make a film about the residents of Haifa who were so aghast at the Germans’ killing of innocent Jews they wouldn’t use glycerin soap during WW II. And a friend’s grandmother from Haifa who I’m told spent her days praying for their souls, and then those murdered Jews decedents stole the home of the grandmother in Haifa. And then there’s the movie about the Palestinians who welcomed Jewish refugees for decades until they started stealing land and homes with violence, and that is before the State of Israel came into being!! Did you ever see those films?

  • mark

    By the way,explanation about Hitler. Some jews should be killed, because they are trators of the nation. Even primitiv animals have filling of self defens, they don’t. Those idiots will justify their enemies even inthe moment of death from enemies hands. Don’t forget Israel is a tiny state,surounding by 200 millions people who openly or in their dreams want its destractionand deathfor the jews.Need example,how many demonstration of protest and condemnation like danish cartoons were in muslim world after the massacre of sleeping children and baby. Instead there were joy and giving candy.And you told that those “people” want a peace, Common be realistic

    • ajji

      ‘filling of self defens’? hmm, the dentist never mentioned this kind of filling…

      • muti

        Go to a good Jewish dentist and he will teach u this new word, u have to admit u don’t know everything

  • israel

    mark we are wasting our time defending israel and the Jews, the Jew haters don’t need an excuse to hate israel and the Jews, and no rationale explanation will change their mind, god bless u mark

    • northwoods

      Mark and Israel you well represent Jewish religious fanatics with your aerrogance and hatred. Thanks for laying out so well. When do you begin killing secular Jews.

  • israel

    these liberals will only condemn israel and never condemn theses mulim baby killers that are killing innocent peopel arounf the world, only the jews are evil not the muslims, no wonder the ysay liberalism is a mental disorder, and alott of liberal secular jews suffer from that disorder

    • Dan

      Well, I guess your name says it all… cant expect you to be balanced. As a secular outsider I’m sick of all the violence from religous nuts from both sides. If there is a heaven/paradise, doubt it, none of them will get there. What’s the difference in cruelty from suicide bombers killing innocent people and israeli F16 bombing and killing women and children? The end result is the same: pointless death and mayhem, and continuing hate.

      • mark

        The difference that Israel tries to spare civilian casualties. Israeli forses commit ssurgically operation not to make needless casualties. No any army in the world do this. Ask your self who benefit from large arabs casualties? Sure not Israel, but palestinians.More casualties mins more condemnation of Israel by the World, more humanitarian help,more recognition of palestinians suffering. Palestinians don’t need state. They need eternal struggle. Peace with Israel means no more poblems nomore help help. Who remember balcans problems now?

  • mark

    I”m not a religios jew, but I strngly believe that like every nation on the world, jews have rights to live in their historically land without millitary treat from their neighbors.
    And why arabs can live in Israel, but jews can’t live in “settelments” in Judea and Samaria? And what rights have arabs to name East Jerusalem their capital?

  • Deekay

    Anyone else reading anything into the fact that irael and mark both write exactly the same way, make the same spelling and grammatical mistakes, and are falling over themselves agreeing with each other?

    Seriously, mark: walk away. You’re not smart enough to sit and talk at the big-people table yet, no matter how many imaginary friends you create to agree with you.

    • israel

      please spell my name with an s.I guess ur the smart one here, instead of responding to my and marks comments u r just throwing lies about me, I guess u are a typical liberal that will not debate the issue

    • mark

      I’m a russian jew. And I think I made less mistakes in english than you in russian.
      Wrong point of viev is worse than mistakes in gramma.

      • northwoods

        Mark you sure sound like a religious Jew. Do you support the Shaa Party like so many Russians do? Do you believe that non-Jews were created to serve the Jews like Rabbi Yosef, leader of the Shaa Party does?

      • joe

        Get it right it’s the shass party not the shaa. Do Christian believe that Jews go to hell? Who cares what they believe but most Christian don’t go around killing innocent people around the world, its only the Muslims that are massacring innocent people around the world and around israel, and again ur only quoting one fanatic israel rabbi most religious Jews in israel think he is a fanatic.

Page: 1 2 3
Add your comment
The rules: Keep it clean, and stay on the subject - or we may delete your comment. If you see inappropriate language, e-mail us. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field.

When you click on the "Post Comment" button above to submit your comments, you are indicating your acceptance of and are agreeing to the Terms of Service. You can also read our Privacy Policy.

Latest Videos in Movies

Advertisement

TV Recaps

Powered by WordPress.com VIP