She replaces Alesia Weston, who left the post after less than one year.
After several troubled years at the Jerusalem Cinematheque, the temporary Board of Directors has hired Noa Regev as its new CEO, a position which puts her in charge of the prestigious Jerusalem Film Festival and the Israeli Film Archive as well.
Regev, 32, is a graduate of the Film Department at the Tel Aviv University, and she was previously head of the Student Film Festival in Tel Aviv and had a short spell as the director of the modest Holon Cinematheque.
She is now facing a tough and complicated job. Shaken by managerial problems since its perennial founder and evergreen director Lia van Leer moved to a honorary position a few years ago, the venerable institution had hoped, back in 2012, that former Sundance executive Alesia Weston. But Weston left the post after less than one year, leaving the Board to face once again a vacant seat that seemed particularly difficult to fill, given the tense relations between the staff and the increasingly acute budget deficits which put a serious toll on its operations.
Financial advisers brought in by the Board started by imposing cuts on the Cinematheque’s activities. Gili Mendel, in charge of Special Events, Educational Programs and Industry Meetings, and Technical Director Dedi Reshef, are already on their way out. Avinoam Harpak will also be departing — he was the high-profile artistic director of the festivall and for many years the Cinematheque’s chief programmer.
The notice to Harpak, which came barely three years before he was due to retire, triggered an immediate and angry letter of protest signed by the Cinematheque employees and addressed to the Board, demanding that Harpak be reinstated immediately. A second petition, supported by 200 people, also asked the Board to rethink its decision.
In what appears to be an attempt to soften the blow, Regev met Harpak and suggested a temporary solution concerning his future at the festival, but in the meantime, Elad Samorzik, previously of the Haifa Festival programming team, was hired, in all likelihood to fill in a sizable part of Harpak’s former responsibilities.
When contacted by Screen, Regev said she didn’t want to make any comments until the new structures are finalised.