ITVS International Film Waltz With Bashir Receives Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film

Prestigious Win a First-Ever for ITVS and Latest in a Number of Accolades and Awards for Critically Acclaimed Film

(San Francisco-CA)—ITVS International announced today that Israeli animated feature-length documentary WALTZ WITH BASHIR was named Best Foreign Language Film at last night’s ceremony of the 66th annual Golden Globe Awards. This prestigious award follows closely on the heels of last week’s win for the film as Best Foreign Language Film at the Critic’s Choice Awards. 

WALTZ WITH BASHIR is part of the ITVS International initiative and received production funding from the organization through its international media development fund. After its upcoming theatrical distribution through Sony Classic Films, the film will join the slate of more than 70 ITVS International programs ITVS is delivering to U.S. audiences. 

WALTZ WITH BASHIR is a critically acclaimed animated documentary directed by Ari Folman. The film deals with the 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre in war-torn Lebanon. One night in September 1982, Christian militia members invaded refugee camps in the heart of Beirut and massacred more than three thousand Palestinians while Israeli soldiers surrounded the area. Ari Folman was one of these soldiers. WALTZ WITH BASHIR is Folman's attempt to decipher the horror of that night. 

“ITVS is delighted for director Ari Folman. WALTZ WITH BASHIR is an extraordinary, provocative and highly acclaimed film,” said Sally Jo Fifer, ITVS President and CEO. “This is a well deserved award for the filmmakers and a huge source of pride for ITVS.” 

WALTZ WITH BASHIR was nominated for a “Palme d'Or” at the 2008 Cannes International Film Festival and received wide critical acclaim. To date WALTZ WITH BASHIR has received several awards including: British Independent Film Awards Best Foreign Independent Film (2008) and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award, Best Animated Film (2008). It also received the award for Best Foreign Language Film from the 14th Annual Broadcast Film Critics Association’s “Critics’ Choice Awards” (2009), and was named Best Picture by the National Society of Film Critics. 

The film won six awards of the Israeli Film Academy, including Best Picture and was featured in the 46th New York Film Festival, where it also had its US premiere on October 2nd, 2008. WALTZ WITH BASHIR tied for Best Feature Documentary at the 2008 International Documentary Association awards. It is in the running for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, and has been nominated for the prestigious British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Awards for Best Film not in the English Language. 

The film is a co-production of Bridgit Folman Films Gang and ITVS International. 


The Independent Television Service (ITVS) funds and presents award-winning documentaries and dramas on public television, innovative new media projects on the Web and the Emmy Award-winning weekly series Independent Lens on Tuesday nights at 10 PM on PBS. ITVS is a miracle of public policy created by media activists, citizens and politicians seeking to foster plurality and diversity in public television. ITVS was established by a historic mandate of Congress to champion independently produced programs that take creative risks, spark public dialogue and serve underserved audiences. Since its inception in 1991, ITVS programs have revitalized the relationship between the public and public television, bringing TV audiences face-to-face with the lives and concerns of their fellow Americans. More information about ITVS can be obtained by visiting The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, funds ITVS. 


ITVS International is a division of the Independent Television Service that promotes an international exchange of documentary films made by independent producers, bringing international voices to U.S. audiences, and American stories to audiences abroad. 

Through a unique public-private partnership called the Global Perspectives Project, ITVS International administers the International Media Development Fund (IMDF) and True Stories: Life in the USA. The IMDF funds international producers and supports the American broadcast of their programs. True Stories: Life in the USA promotes a series of American independent films to audiences around the world. 

ITVS created the Global Perspectives Project in 2005 with support from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Ford Foundation, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the U.S. Department of State. More information about ITVS International is available online at The deadline for the next International Call is February 6, 2009. 

CONTACT: Voleine Amilcar, ITVS:, 415-356-8383, ext 244 (USA) Randall Cole, ITVS International:, +44 7538 476 283 (UK)

Posted on January 12, 2009