The 31st edition of the Jerusalem Film Festival will kick off July 10 with the world premiere of Eran Riklis’ Dancing Arabs.

Sayed Kashua wrote the script based on his bestselling novels Dancing Arabs and Second Person Singular.

The film is about Eyad, a Palestinian-Israeli boy from the town of Tira whose parents send to a prestigious Jewish boarding school in Jerusalem. He has to make personal sacrifices to be accepted in the new environment.

The gala screening will take place at the Sultan’s Pool in the presence of the director and cast members including Tawfeek Barhom, Yael Abecassis, Michael Moshonov, Ali Suliman, Daniel Kitzis and Norman Issa.

Dancing Arabs is an Israeli-German-French co-production, produced by Chilik Michaeli, Avraham Pirchi, Tami Leon, Moshe Edery, and Leon Edery, Michael Eckelt, Antoine de Clermont-Tonnerre and Bettina Brokemper.

The festival will close on July 17 with Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises. The film is screened courtesy of Orlando Films and Orlando Cinema and will come to commercial theatres in Israel after the festival.

Noa Regev, Director of the Jerusalem Cinematheque and the Jerusalem Film Festival, said: “The films chosen for the opening and closing events of the Festival reflect the way in which the Jerusalem Film Festival celebrates simultaneously the impressive achievements of the Israeli cinema, and the new crop of cinematic masterpieces from around the world, presented here in local premiere screenings.”