If you thought smartly written, superbly acted television dramas only happen on HBO, or once a decade as in the Italian phenomenon Best of Youth, think again: A Touch Away takes a slice of contemporary Tel Aviv life and spins out a marvelous multi-family drama that will leave you wanting more. The series focuses on two families whose lives fatefully intersect in an apartment complex in the Orthodox neighborhood of Bnei Barak in Tel Aviv. The Bermans are a strictly religious (Haredi) family whose daughter Rochele (Gaya Traub) is about to enter into an arranged marriage with a wealthy young bridegroom. But sparks fly when a newly arrived, thoroughly secular family from Russia--including vivacious actress Marina (the incomparable Evgenia Dodina) and her handsome eldest son Zorik--takes over a neighboring apartment. The forbidden love that soon buds between the two young neighbors, and the secrets that each family must hide,threaten the families' deeply rooted cultural assumptions and challenge individual family members' beliefs. A Touch Away, cleverly scripted and well cast, never fails to entertain, but manages also to be a realistic reflection of the ongoing social challenges facing today's increasingly diverse Israeli society. Courtesy San Francisco Jewish Film Festival


A Touch Away

8 X 38 min, Color – An Award Winning Drama Series, 2007

Creators of the Series: Zafrir Kochanovsky, Ronit Weis-Berkowitz, Ron Ninio
Directed by: Ron Ninio
Produced by: Zafrir Kochanovsky & Miri Ezra – T.T.V Productions
Sponsored by: Reshet/Israel’s 2nd Channel & Tsav Piyus
Language: Hebrew, Russian with English and French Subtitles

DVD - For Home Use Only :
$99.00

Synopsis


If you thought smartly written, superbly acted television dramas only happen on HBO, or once a decade as in the Italian phenomenon Best of Youth, think again: A Touch Away takes a slice of contemporary Tel Aviv life and spins out a marvelous multi-family drama that will leave you wanting more. The series focuses on two families whose lives fatefully intersect in an apartment complex in the Orthodox neighborhood of Bnei Barak in Tel Aviv. The Bermans are a strictly religious (Haredi) family whose daughter Rochele (Gaya Traub) is about to enter into an arranged marriage with a wealthy young bridegroom. But sparks fly when a newly arrived, thoroughly...

Awards

  • Best TV Series - Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema, USA, 2009
  • Special Audience Recognition – Washington Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • 7 Prizes – Directing Award, Script Award, Best Actor, Best Art Design, Best Original Score and more The Israeli Academy Awards for made-for-TV Drama, 2007

Festivals

  • SERET, Switzerland, 2012
  • Museum of Jewish History, Paris
  • Calgary Jewish Film Festival, Canada, 2010
  • Israel Non-Stop Film Festival, USA, 2009

Additional info

Gallery

Press & Links:

  • A Touch Away - A captivating Romeo and Juliet story - Toronto audiences are hooked! – for the entire program at the prestigious Koffler Arts Centre, Toronto, check: http://www.kofflerarts.org/Age/Event-Detail/?RecordID=90

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    The walls are thin between the two apartments on the 2006 hit Israeli drama series, A Touch Away. The clatter, conversation and lives of two families –one ultra-Orthodox, the other Russian immigrant- seeping from one apartment to the other tantalized viewers with access into usually unseen worlds. And the daring, star-crossed love that blooms in an apartment complex in the ultra-Orthodox Bnei Brak neighborhood between beautiful 17 year old Roha'le, daughter of the religious family, and secular Zorik, who served in the Army, but now works as a window washer, proved electric for the show's ratings.

     

    The eight episode series was the most watched program in Israeli television history and won seven Ophir Awards, the Israeli equivalent of the Oscars and Emmys. It also piqued the interest of Hollywood producers….

     

    HADASSAH MAGAZINE/ The Israelization of TV, Dina Kraft, January 2009




  • A Touch Away on DVD: This Israeli TV miniseries directed by Zafrir Kochanovsky has recently made its U.S. debut at the 2008 Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival. Set in the neighborhood of Bnei Barak in Tel Aviv, an ultra Orthodox family deeply ingrained in the most ancient traditions of Judaism has their world shaken when a secular Jewish family from Russia moves into the apartment next door. Already a tenuous coexistence, sparks being to fly when secular Zorik falls in love with the neighbor’s beautiful daughter, Rochale. (Keep in mind, Rochale has also been promised to another man.) As the drama unfolds, it stays lively and amusing while giving the viewer a deeper understanding of the intense cultural conflict that exists between Jews in modern -day Israel. The relationships that develop between all of the characters set the stage for a series of events that will keep the audience on the edges of their seats.

    A Touch Away is available on DVD from Ruth Diskin Films (ruthfilms.com).

    For the entire review, check: http://www.independent.com/news/2008/sep/04/em-touch-awayem



  • Israeli TV producer Zafrir Kochanovsky has hit it big with his award-winning series "A Touch Away".
    He is currently filming the show's second season while HBO is remaking the first one for American audiences.After more than eighty documentaries, Kochanovsky was asked to do a show on the multi-ethnic society that is Israel today. What he came up with was a Romeo and Juliette-type story of the love that develops between a young Russian immigrant, and the ultra-Orthodox young beauty next door.There is an enormous amount of authenticity about the work that the viewers can't help but agree with the character Zorik's mother who observes dryly "they could stage The Dybbuk here without any props".

    Zafrir had a very good feeling about the series even before it aired. "There was such a positive vibe on the set that I knew something special was happening here".

    A Touch Away got the highest ratings ever for an Israeli TV show, swept away the "Israeli Emmy's" and won the hearts of people of all ages."

    For the entire interview with Z. Kochanovsky, check The Jewish Film World, Fall 2008 Edition



  • “…a definite crowd-pleaser that the audience adored so much that they cheered for Zorik, the handsome, Russian hero, to kiss and embrace Rochele, the Orthodox heroine.   More than a love story, the film engages the audience in Israel society, especially the conflicts between new secular immigrants and older, more Orthodox communities."
    Karen Davis – Executive Director, Palm Beach Jewish Film Festival

  • "Everyone was thrilled with “A Touch Away.” I took a chance showing the first three episodes as our opening night feature, but the audience was so into it that they were outraged when the house lights went up. Everyone who could attend did attend the final five episodes two days later and the others are begging me to let them have the disks."
    Barbara Greenleaf – Executive Director of Santa Barbara JFF

Festivals

  • SERET, Switzerland, 2012
  • Museum of Jewish History, Paris
  • Calgary Jewish Film Festival, Canada, 2010
  • Israel Non-Stop Film Festival, USA, 2009
  • Forum Des Images, Paris, France, 2009
  • Vancouver Jewish Film Festival, Canada, 2009
  • Hong Kong Jewish Film Festival, 2009
  • Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema, USA, 2009
  • Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2009
  • Sao Paulo Jewish Film Festival, Brazil, 2009
  • Koffler Art Centre, Toronto, Canada, 2009
  • Dallas Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2009
  • Pittsburgh Israeli Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2009
  • Dor Chadash, NY, 2009
  • Festival of Jewish Cinema, Australia, 2008
  • Contra Costa Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2009
  • Washington Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Israeli Showcase, Vienna Film Archive, Austria, 2008
  • Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Toronto Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Tampa Bay Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Naa'mat Montreal, Canada, 2008
  • Northern NJ Israeli Film Series, USA, 2008
  • San Diego Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Denver Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • Israfest Film Festival, USA, 2007
  • Palm Beach Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2007
  • San Francisco Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2007
  • Berlin Jewish Film Festival, 2007
  • Haifa Film Festival, Israel, 2006
  • Jerusalem Jewish Film Festival, Israel, 2006

Educational

  • Smith College
  • Museum of Jewish History, Paris
  • Arizona State University
  • Vienna Film Archive, Austria
  • Harvard University
  • University of Atlantic Florida
  • Miami University
  • Wesleyan College
  • Seagal College, Cleveland
  • Coalition of Jewish Studies, USA
  • Yale University
  • University of Amherst, MA
  • University of South Florida
  • University of Kansas
  • University of Maryland

Awards

  • Best TV Series - Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema, USA, 2009
  • Special Audience Recognition – Washington Jewish Film Festival, USA, 2008
  • 7 Prizes – Directing Award, Script Award, Best Actor, Best Art Design, Best Original Score and more The Israeli Academy Awards for made-for-TV Drama, 2007
  • Audience Award – Israfest Film Festival NY, USA, 2007
  • Best Drama Series Award – Haifa Int'l Film Festival, Israel