Moriah Films, the documentary-making arm of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, has bitten off another solid chunk of Israeli history in “The Prime Ministers,” a film based on the lively book of the same title by Yehuda Avner, who doubles as the chief narrator of the two-part production.
A curious thing happened in the pages of The Jewish Journal the week of Nov. 20. During a period when a host of issues of major importance to the American Jewish community were occuring that commanded front page attention elsewhere, The Journal chose to devote the cover story and an editorial in the Nov. 20 issue to the complaints of a disgruntled documentary director and his co-writer against Moriah Films of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. In spite of The Journal's claims that it was not "picking on the Wiesenthal Center," one wonders what the editorial staff's true motives were in giving an inordinate amount of space to the attempt by these individuals to politicize what was for all intents and purposes a dispute over the best creative approach to a film about Israel's first 50 years.
"A Dream No More," an ambitious documentary on Israel's first 50 years, intended originally as a highlight of the nation's anniversary jubilee, is, indeed, a dream no more. Nearly completed, the film has been permanently shelved by the producing Simon Wiesenthal Center, to the considerable dismay of the documentary's chief creators.