Haifa International Film Festival takes place every year on Sukkot holiday, between late September and late October in Haifa. During the ten days, seven cinemas throughout Mt. Carmel area hold over 300 screenings for 170 new films around the clock. The festival also features plenty of open-air screenings. Feature films, short films, documentaries, animation, retrospectives, tributes, and other categories ensure diversity of the program.
Haifa International Film festival was the first event of this kind in the country when it was inaugurated in 1983. The festival is funded by the City of Haifa, the Israeli Film Council, the Ministry of Education and local businesses. It attracts about 100,000 attendees from all over the world.
The festival also gives an opportunity to socialize with filmmakers during conferences, receptions, post-screening discussions and training sessions. Also, coffee houses and restaurants throughout Mt. Carmel become a meeting point for actors, directors and cinema enthusiasts during the festival. Haifa International Film festival is included in the list of top 50 most important film festivals of the world. “The Golden Anchor” and “The Directors of Tomorrow” are two of the most prestigious Israeli cinema awards that encourage filmmakers to create original, quality works. William Dafoe, Brenda Beltin, Harvey Keitel, Klaus Maria Branduaer, Sophie Marceau, Joseph Feins, Eliot Gould and Paul Jameti were the guests and participants in the events of the festival.