Cinematic Classic FIDDLER ON THE ROOF Named Best Ever Jewish Film at Opening Night Gala of UK Jewish Film Festival | The Fan Carpet

Cinematic Classic FIDDLER ON THE ROOF Named Best Ever Jewish Film at Opening Night Gala of UK Jewish Film Festival

08 November 2018

“Because there is no question in life to which it does not provide a plausible answer. Hence I quote it endlessly”

"It touches me so profoundly, I can’t even explain why I love it so much, I just do.”

TV and Radio Broadcaster Vanessa Feltz announced that Fiddler on the Roof, has claimed the coveted title of Best Ever Jewish Film following the recent public vote. The announcement was made Thursday night, 8th November, at the Opening Night Gala of the 22nd UK Jewish Film Festival.

At a time when there is growing concern about antisemitism around the globe it’s perhaps unsurprising that a film about the persecution of Jews is striking such a resonant chord with so many people. Organisers commented that the top four film choices all feature antisemitism as a major theme.

In the lead-up to the festival the public were encouraged to vote for their favourite Jewish film, with some famous faces also getting in touch to cast their votes, such as Matt Lucas (Little Britain), Maureen Lipman (The Pianist) and Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham).

Jewish classics such as Schindler’s List and The Pianist were clear front runners in the vote with some more modern classics such as Call Me By Your Name and Son of Saul also making an appearance, causing ties for 7th and 10th place respectively. Here is a full list of the winners:


1. Fiddler on the Roof
2. Schindler’s List
3. The Producers
4. Life Is Beautiful
5. A Serious Man
6. The Pianist
7. Call Me By Your Name
7. Shoah
8. Annie Hall
9. The Big Lebowski
10. Son of Saul
10. The Jazz Singer

The definition of ‘Jewish film’ for the purpose of the vote was outlinedas: any film whose content reflects or engages with, in part at least, Jewish life, themes or stories or Jewish sensibilities, language and comedy.



Chief Executive of UK Jewish Film, Michael Etherton said “It’s incredible to discover the huge impact that ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ continues to command across the generations. Few films deal so profoundly with the Jewish experience as Fiddler. The simplicity of home life, the importance of traditions, the constant fear of antisemitism, a theme which resonates ever more strongly with audiences today. One voter summarised it beautifully as follows: ‘Because there is no question in life to which it does not provide a plausible answer’.”


The 22nd UK International Jewish Film Festival takes place between 8th-22nd November 2018 at cinemas across London, Manchester, Leeds and Glasgow

For more information about the festival please visit.

Votes by Percentage:
Fiddler On The Roof - 17.4%
Schindler’s List - 13.4%
The Producers - 7.6%
Life Is Beautiful - 5.1%
A Serious Man - 4.7%
The Pianist - 4.5%
Call Me Your Name - 4%
Shoah - 4%
Annie Hall - 2.9%
The Big Lebowski - 2.7%
Son Of Saul - 2.2%
The Jazz Singer - 2.2%

N.B. Votes were collected online through the UK Jewish Film Best Ever Jewish Film microsite and voting was limited to one vote per person. Total voting sample was 447.

Voters comments:

Maureen Lipman

Favourite Film:

“Of all the films I’ve seen the one that remains in my mind’s eye is The Band’s Visit. I felt as if it were my personal discovery. It was As small, detailed and universal as a Jane Austen novel. The two principal actors- he with his sad camel’s face and she with that weary lost sexuality- were perfectly cast, restrained and seemed to have a delicate chemistry that most actors could never emulate. I am not surprised that it has translated into a TONY nominated Broadway musical and I can’t wait to see it.”

Matt Lucas
Comedian, screenwriter, actor, singer

Favourite Film:

"Au Revoir Les Enfants by Louis Malle… A witty, heartbreaking example of Malle at his best.”

Gurinder Chadha
Film Director, Producer, Writer

Favourite Film:

“I loved Jack Rosenthal’s films because when I watched them growing upas girl, the world he created for British Jews spoke to me as a British Indian in the absence of anything else remotely relevant and touching. He was culturally inspiring - clearly examining a community he cherished from the inside out - and his work certainly made a mark on my film BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM.”

About UK Jewish Film
At the core of UK Jewish Film’s values is the notion that film is universal. It crosses cultures and divides and has the ability to unite, engage and educate diverse audiences through the telling of cinematic stories that provide varied perspectives on Jewish and Israeli life and culture.

UK Jewish Film aims to develop a culture where Jewish film is recognised and enjoyed by the widest possible audience, and to bring Jewish related film to the heart of British cinema culture.
UK Jewish Film welcomed 30,000 visitors last year through its flagship, annual UK Jewish Film Festival, its international festivals, as well as its 450 additional year-round screenings and previews at venues across London and the UK. Its wide range of films include feature films, documentaries, shorts and archive films, which reflect the diversity of Jewish and Israeli life and culture. Since its inception UK Jewish Film has welcomed over 300,000 visitors. Its popular video on demand platform brings its unique provision of film to many more. The organisation also runs acclaimed education programmes that reach hundreds of young people each year including through its schools’ programme harnessing the power of film to combat antisemitism.

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