Helen Mirren to receive achievement award at Jerusalem Film Festival

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Helen Mirren to receive achievement award at Jerusalem Film Festival

Golda Meir biopic starring award-winning British actress to be released a month before Yom Kippur War’s 50th anniversary

Helen Mirren as Golda Meir. Credit: Jasper Wolf
Helen Mirren as Golda Meir. Credit: Jasper Wolf

Dame Helen Mirren will receive an achievement award at the 40th Jerusalem Film Festival (JFF) which opens on Thursday July 13th.

The accolade will be presented to the multi-award-winning British actress at the launch of the international event, at Sultan’s Pool, the outdoor amphitheater located directly under the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City.

The festival will open with her new film ‘Golda’, about former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir.

Dame Helen as Golda
Pic: Click News and Media / BACKGRID

A statement from JFF said: “The mere mention of Helen Mirren’s name inspires awe and anticipation for each one of her new films. Our anticipation is doubled, as she honors us with her presence to mark her appearance in the role of one of the most significant figures in Israeli history, Golda Meir. We are thrilled to take this opportunity to honor her for her illustrious career.”

The film festival also praised Mirren’s “versatility and professionalism,” as they “contributed to her iconic status and cross-generational popularity.”

Directed by Oscar-winning Israeli filmmaker Guy Nativ, ‘Golda’ will open in cinemas on 24 August, just one month shy of the conflict’s 50th anniversary.

The film is set during the three-week war, which began as a surprise attack on Israel launched by Egypt, Syria and a number of allies on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. It will focus on Meir’s decision-making during the war, her complicated relationship with U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (played by Liev Schreiber) and her legacy around the world.

Israel’s first and, so far, only female prime minister, Meir was born in Kyiv and grew up in Milwaukee before immigrating to Israel. She served as prime minister from 1969 to 1974. While she has historically been admired by American Jews, her legacy in Israel – particularly regarding her conduct before and during the Yom Kippur War – is more controversial. She resigned as prime minister months after the war ended, and died in 1978.

Helen Mirren and Golda Meir

In addition to Mirren and Schreiber, the film stars Israeli actors Lior Ashkenazi as IDF Chief of Staff David “Dado” Elazar and Rami Heuberger as Defense Minister Moshe Dayan.

Mirren has already received critical acclaim for her performance in the role, which required makeup and prosthetics so that she would resemble Meir. Mirren is neither Jewish nor Israeli, which prompted some scrutiny regarding her casting.

“Golda” had its world premiere in February at the Berlin Film Festival.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: