Katriel Schory

Developing the audience

Katriel Schory has been the director of Israel Film Fund for 17 years and, from this position, he contributed to the financing of 230 films, such as Waltz with Bashir or Lebanon. Schory is one of the most respected figures in the film world and many Jewish and Arab filmmakers in Israel consider him to be a guardian of freedom of expression. 

Schory studied at the New York University Film School and returned to Israel in 1973. In 1999, he assumed the role of the Executive Director of the Israel Film Fund, the leading Fund in Israel supporting and promoting Israeli feature films. The Fund's responsibility is to facilitate the development, production, co-production, marketing, promotion and distribution of Israeli feature films in Israel and worldwide.

„We had a period in which we lost a part of the audience, but over the past 10 to 12 years we have seen a strong return of Israeli audiences to watch Israeli films. The numbers are not bad. Some films are doing very well, which in our terms means selling more than 150,000 tickets inside the country, which, for the size of Israel, is good. So, all together, there is a big interest in Israeli films from Israel itself as well. “

Except the Israel Film Fund, he is involved in many other activities as a representative of the Israel´s film industry in numerous international organizations & bodies. He shared his experience and knowledge as a lecturer at SOFA, EAVE on Demand at the Tirana Film Festival, as a coach of Pitch & Feedback session during Karlovy Vary Film Festival, and as a speaker at numerous film festivals including Festival de Cannes, Thessaloniki International Film Festival, Sarajevo Film Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam etc. Moreover, Schory was the Chairman of Israel’s Film and Television Producers’ Association (1989 – 1994); a member of the National Committee for the Advancement of Television and Films (1989 – 1999), and since 1985 he has been a lecturer at the Department of Film and Television of the Tel Aviv University.

During VFF, Schory will have a special master class about the importance of audience development, in which he will also cover the issue of why European films are unable to reach a bigger audience. As he said: „we have a hell lot of films out on the market, but we don’t have enough audience for these films.“

Audience development and film literacy programme during VFF is co-organized with Creative Europe Desk Slovakia.