Amidst anti-semitism accusations, London’s Tricycle Theatre reversed its decision not to support the UK Jewish Film Festival and will host the event in 2015
Due to the latest conflict in Gaza, it has become increasingly difficult for companies and individuals throughout the world to know exactly how to process exactly what is happening between the states of Israel and Palestine. This has infrequently led to problems of their own, such as the problems that the Tricycle Theatre in London had recently.
The Tricycle Theatre of London is taking back its recent decision not to host the UK Jewish Film Festival. After pulling its support for the festival, the theatre received signifiant criticism from the Jewish community in the UK, and the establishment was branded as anti-semitic by many in the public. While it is too late for the theatre to host this year’s festival, they plan on hosting the event next year.
The UK Jewish Film Festival is an annual event which highlights the great achievements that have been made by Jewish actors, directors, and writers. However, because this year it was partly supported financially by the Israeli Embassy, the Tricycle Theatre in London decided to refuse to let the festival use their venue. They did not want to be seen as supporting the military action that has been happening in Gaza, and refused to host the 2014 festival there.
Those involved with the UK Jewish Film Festival were dismayed and stated that the theatre was intending to “politicize” the festival when that was in no way its original intention. The backlash against the Tricycle Theatre was extreme: many people accused them of being anti-Semitic believing the theatre was just creating an excuse not to get involved. The UK Jewish Film Festival then had to find an alternative venue to hold their screenings.
While several prominent British Jews made statements against the Tricycle Theatre in London and argued that it was an unfair boycott, it seems that all has been mended. After intense discussions between the Tricycle Theatre and the UK Jewish Film Festival, an agreement has been reached that invites the festival back to the theatre with no limitations on where they receive their funding for 2015.