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Helen Mirren, Mila Kunis join letter rejecting boycott of Tel Aviv film fest

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A number of entertainment figures – including some prominent actors – signed a letter this week rejecting efforts to boycott the upcoming International LGBT Festival in Tel Aviv and condemning cultural boycotts against Israel.

God Letter, Organized by the Creative Community for Peace Association, was signed by actresses Helen Mirren and Mila Kunis as well as actors Billy Porter, Neil Patrick Harris and Zachary Quinto.

“We reject any attempt to boycott TLVFest – the largest LGBT film festival in Israel – which works to present the stories of LGBT people around the world and create a brighter future for LGBT people both in Israel and around the world,” the letter reads. The filmmakers are participating against the party rhetoric of the boycott activists who seek to deceive, harass and intimidate artists in order to remove their films from the festival or shame them for participating in the festival. “

The upcoming event, known as TLVFest, is set to kick off on November 11, with screenings of dozens of films as well as additional events, including a drag contest and a final awards ceremony. The incident has consistently drawn fire from BDS activists, who accuse it of “pinkwashing” Israel by emphasizing gay rights in an effort to distract from its activities against Palestinians.

Last year, more than 100 LGBT filmmakers called for a boycott of the festival “until Israel complies with international law and respects Palestinian human rights.”

B Disclaimer Published ahead of this year’s festival, Yair Hochner, director of TLVFest, noted that the event is a private rather than a government affair, involving Palestinian voices, and that the boycott of it contributes nothing to advancing peace efforts.

American actor Neil Patrick Harris will be seen at the annual Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, June 14, 2019. (Tomer Neuberg / Flash90)

“These movements have chosen the wrong target, and instead of advancing the Palestinian goal, they are trying to silence those who are fighting for freedom of expression,” Hochner wrote. The boycott of the festival will only serve “to ignite violent voices and unfortunately will not put pressure on the Israeli government to stop its ongoing human rights violations,” he said.

The letter published this week by the CCFP echoed those sentiments.

“We believe that anyone who works to undermine TLVFest only adds another barrier to freedom, justice, equality and peace that we all desperately yearn for, especially for the LGBT community persecuted throughout the Middle East and around the world,” the letter reads. For political purposes. “

The signatories also included an actress and “Jeopardy!” Host Haim Bialik, TV personality Sharon Osborne, former boy band star Lance Bass, songwriter Diane Warren, actor Stephen Fry, actress and TV host Melissa Rivers, producer and director Greg Berlanti, actress Emanuel Cricky, actor Jonathan Lipnitzky and a wide variety of others Industry figures, including agents, executives, producers and directors.

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