Dustin Hoffman did not cancel Jerusalem appearance

Dustin Hoffman

Dustin Hoffman

Jewish actor Dustin Hoffman did not halt arrangements to attend the Jerusalem Film Festival in the wake of the Gaza flotilla clash, despite what one of the organisers had claimed.

Yigal Molad Hayo, the associate director of the Cinematheque, the location of the annual festival, had told the Jerusalem Post he had been “very close to reaching an agreement” for Mr Hoffman to appear at the event.

But he said: “Then the flotilla happened and correspondence was ended.”

However he has now retracted his statement as “misleading and incorrect”.

He said that although it had been hoped Mr Hoffman would attend “our aspirations never reached the level of direct discussion with his office nor, at any point was there confirmation he would be available to attend.”

Mr Molad Hayo said arrangements for the When Harry Met Sally star to visit the city had “all been closed with her people,” when the flotilla raid happened in May.

But actress Meg Ryan has pulled out of the event, which began in Jerusalem on July 8 and is expected to attract more than 70,000 people over a fortnight.

Mr Molad Hayo said: “A day after we got an email saying she was not going to attend.

“Although they claimed it was because she was too busy, it was clear to me that it probably had something to do with what had happened.”

He said it was sad that “many people are swayed by the political situation.”

Last updated: 12:25pm, July 13 2010