Nadav Lapid, the Israeli director and screenwriter, created a stir on social media after he called Vivek Agnihotri’s The Kashmir Files a “propaganda” and “vulgar” film while giving the jury report during the International Film Festival of India at Goa.

Lapid’s exact comments about the film were, “There were 15 films in the international competition — the front window of the festival. Fourteen out of them had the cinematic qualities…and evoked vivid discussions. We were, all of us, disturbed and shocked by the 15th film, The Kashmir Files. That felt to us like a propaganda, vulgar movie, inappropriate for an artistic competitive section of such a prestigious film festival.”

Who is Nadav Lapid?

Israeli director and screenwriter Nadav Lapid was born on April 8, 1975. He is a native of Israel’s capital, Tel Aviv. Lapid’s father, Haim Lapid, is a writer, while his mother, Era Lapid, is a film editor.

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The Ahed’s Knee director is a graduate in philosophy from Tel Aviv University. He has served in the Israel armed forces, after which he studied at the Sam Spiegel Film and Television School in Jerusalem.

Lapid’s first film, Policeman, received critical acclaim when it was screened at the Locarno International Film Festival, where it bagged the jury prize.

In 2019, his film Synonyms won the Golden Bear (awarded for the best film) at the Berlin Film Festival.

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The 47-year-old filmmaker’s relationship with his native country has not always been that pleasant. In September 2022, he joined hands with 250 Israel filmmakers including Ari Folman and Hagai Levi to write an open letter to protest against the Shomron (Samaria/West Bank) Film Fund.

These filmmakers were of the opinion that this fund would be used to ask Israel directors to “actively participate in whitewashing the Occupation (of Palestine) in exchange for financial support and prizes.”