The JFBB has involved international film scholars, festival directors, and experts on Jewish film in compiling the program for many years. The festival team recruited Sophie Albers Ben Chamo and Thomas Abeltshauser as independent curators this year.

© Steffen JänickeSophie Albers Ben Chamo has been Press and Communications Officer with the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom since 2017. Before that, she was arts editor with STERN online for eight years. In 2016, she was a member of the JFBB's jury of critics. Loves film. Has always loved film. From TEVYA to ATOMIC FALAFEL. Began working as a film critic writing brief texts for a Jewish magazine called Chuzpe.

Thomas Abeltshauser is a freelance journalist and film critic based in Berlin.
He writes about current film releases and reports on international film festivals for numerous daily newspapers as well as magazines. Magister in film sciences from the Freie Universität Berlin. Member of the jury at numerous film festivals, including Berlin, Cannes, Guadalajara, Thessaloniki. Member of the Verband der deutschen Filmkritik and FIPRESCI. Online editor for the European Film Academy.


In previous years, film and cultural scholars such as Prof. Régine-Mihal Friedman (Professor emerita, Department of Cinema and Television, Tel Aviv University, Israel), Aviva Weintraub (Festival Director, Jewish Film Festival New York and Curator, Jewish Museum New York), Pnina Blayer (Festival Director, International Filmfestival Haifa), Agnès Bensimon (publicist and filmmaker, Brussels and Jerusalem), Janice Plotkin (Docent, Stanford University, Founder and longstanding Curator of the Jewish Film Festival San Francisco), Isaac Zablocki (Executive Director, "The Other Israel Filmfestival"), as well as Hazel Rosenstrauch (cultural scholar, writer, journalist, Vienna and Berlin), Esther Schapira (documentary filmmaker, commentator for the ARD-Tagesthemen and since 2012 Head of the Department "Politics and Society," Hessischer Rundfunk, Frankfurt), and Dr. Georg M. Hafner (documentary filmmaker, writer, and publicist) were involved in selecting films for the JFBB.