Hague to sign Israel-Britain film deal

William Hague is in Israel for an official trip

William Hague is in Israel for an official trip

William Hague is to sign a groundbreaking agreement cementing ties between the British and Israeli film industries.

The Foreign Secretary, who is in Israel for a two-day trip, is expected to sign the co-production deal tomorrow.

It will give Israeli film-makers the chance to benefit from the facilities and reputation of the British film industry and open up new channels for both countries’ film industries.

The deal, 25 years in the making, will also enable British film crews to take advantage of Israeli locations, including for scripts set during the British Mandate in Palestine.

Britain has this film link with only seven other countries. Mr Hague is to agree a smiliar deal with the Palestinian Authority.

Katriel Schorry, CEO of the Israel Film Fund, said: “This is a cause for great joy, and a huge step for the Israeli film industry.

He said the agreement paves the way for “many outstanding projects” and added: “British experience plus Israeli energetic creativity should together make wonderful stories.”

Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor said: “It is lights, camera, action for Israeli cinema.

“Scripts that have been gathering dust for years sitting in drawers can now be turned into the next box office hit.”

It is Mr Hague’s official first trip to the country on behalf of the coalition government, although he has visited Israel a number of times under the auspices of Conservative Friends of Israel.

Last updated: 2:59pm, January 28 2011