Gal Gadot wants to work with Argentine-Jewish director Damian Szifron


BUENOS AIRES (JTA) — Gal Gadot revealed in an interview that went viral in Argentine media that she would like to collaborate with Damian Szifron, an acclaimed Argentine-Jewish director who often weaves Jewish characters into his work.

A snippet of the Israeli “Wonder Woman” star talking to Argentine journalist Agustin Eme about Szifron was viewed millions of times on social media earlier this month. She said that Szifron’s 2014 film “Wild Tales” was one of her favorite films.

“Damian, I would love to work with you,” Gadot said in the video, which was part of a conversation about her latest Netflix film “Heart of Stone.”

“My personal mission now is to talk to Damian Szifron, to [have him] make a movie with you,” Eme responded.

Before becoming one of Argentina’s best-known filmmakers, Szifron, 48, was born and raised in Ramos Mejia, a small suburb outside of Buenos Aires. He grew up attending a Jewish school and going to the only Jewish center and sport club in the region.

His big break came with the TV show “The Pretenders,” a series about con artists hired to solve people’s problems, which won a Martin Fierro award — Argentina’s equivalent of an Emmy — for best TV series in 2002. Many of the characters were based on Jewish people from the real Jewish community center Szifron grew up attending — the CISO (Centro Israelita Sionista del Oeste, or the Western Israelite Zionist Center), which serves a small, middle-class Jewish community on the western side of the greater Buenos Aires area.

Szifron’s film career began with 2003’s “Bottom of the Sea,” a comedic drama starring Uruguayan-Jewish actor Daniel Hendler. The protagonist of his second film, 2005’s “On Probation” (in Spanish, “Tiempo de valientes,” or “Time For the Brave”), is a Jewish psychologist named Mariano Silverstein.

Szifron’s 2014 anthology film “Wild Tales” won him global acclaim. It also included multiple Jewish characters and moments — such as an entire segment about a Jewish wedding, complete with klezmer music.

He has said that after his paternal grandfather escaped from a train headed to a Nazi death camp. Szifron’s father worked in a cinema.

“He could watch the films for free. He became a huge cinephile, so ever since I can remember I have a memory of being taken to the cinema by him,” Szifron said in 2015.

Gadot’s “Heart of Stone,” an action thriller, was released earlier this month. Pending the outcome of the Hollywood writer and actor strikes, she is set to star as the Evil Queen in a “Snow White” adaptation next year.

Recommended from JTA