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"Second season of 'Rehearsals'? There were bands that disbanded due to the success, our hope it will not happen" - Walla! culture


The second season, the rumors about disagreements and how they almost cast Gal Gadot. Exclusive interview with Assaf Amir, producer of "Rehearsals" and one of the producers of the series

  • culture

  • TV

  • Israeli television

"Second season of 'Rehearsals'? There were bands that disbanded due to the success, our hope it will not happen"

Assaf Amir is one of the most successful producers in the country, but he has not yet had success like "Rehearsals".

In an exclusive interview, he talks about the hit he created here 11 with Noa Koller and Erez Driggs, reveals how Gal Gadot came up as an option to star and refuses to reassure those who are afraid of being disappointed from the second season


  • Assaf Amir

  • Rehearsals - Series

  • Gal Gadot

  • Agam Rodberg

  • Noa Koller

  • Erez Driggs

Avner Shavit

Monday, 04 January 2021, 00:17

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Excerpt from the "Rehearsals" series here 11, starring Erez Driggs, Yevgenia Dudina and Gila Almagor as Minister of Culture (here 11)

In one of the most beautiful and beloved scenes of "Rehearsals" there are almost no dialogues.

She seals the seventh episode, during which the two main characters played by Erez Driggs and Noa Koller absorb a sequence of humiliations and meet for a moment of common humiliation, when all they have left is to quarrel with their cutlery over the leftover desserts. "It's an amazing moment. I immediately called Noa excitedly, "says Assaf Amir, who produced the series and created it together with its two stars, in an interview with Walla!" I told her - listen Noa, over the years we have done quite a few things in my production company, but this scene?

It's a waste of time. "

Indeed, Norma Productions, the company run by Assaf Amir for the past two decades, has signed quite a few hits, including the series" Catch the Sky "and two of the most prominent films in the history of contemporary Israeli cinema," Broken Wings "by Nir Bergman and" "Fill the Void" by Rama Burstein. The producer is a regular guest on red carpets and has been honored with many awards - but he has never had such a success, he says

. "We've had success in the past, but how much interest?

This is something special.

I'm not very technological and not strong on social media, but I know that a whole world has developed around the series.

When we got to the broadcast here 11, it was clear that there was 'Lock Hour' and this is the 'important series'.

"We did not come with an 'important series' approach, but we wanted to tell a story and see how it turned out, but then what happened happened."

More on Walla!


Our interview with Noa Koller and Erez Driggs

To the full article

Producer and this time also creator.

Assaf Amir (Photo: Reuven Castro)

"At first, the format of the series was a sitcom, and it would hold two to three episodes, not beyond."

The miraculous journey of "rehearsals" is especially impressive if you look back at its starting point and midpoint.

As has been said many times, including in an interview with Sagi Ben-Nun with Noa Koller and Erez Driggs ahead of the series' rise, work on it began more than a decade ago - that is, even before Netanyahu's eternal rule began.

We will try to tell the story briefly: Amir first met Koller and Driggs, mythological exes, when there were only theater people who staged a play based on their relationship and tried to expand to other universes - they also wrote a series, which in time would develop into "rehearsals", but initially had a name and Another character.

Originally, the project was a sitcom, and the scene was not in the theater world but behind the scenes of a TV studio.

"Even then, the concept was similar to what it is now - couples who just before the end of their romantic relationship are given the opportunity to put together an art project, and then cast in roles based on their character two actors who are the complete opposite of them," Amir recalls.

"The difference is that it was in sitcom format, and it's something that would have held two or three episodes, no more. Humor was not lacking, but we needed something beyond."

Even as a sitcom, when it is far from the complete and almost perfect work we know today, "Rehearsals" has aroused interest.

Yes's content department loved the project, and even started talking about casting - Amir reveals here for the first time, that at one point Gal Gadot was then offered a role that would eventually be played by Lake Rodberg.

"It shows you how many years we have been working on the project, because at that time it was still realistic to think of a tidal wave for our series," he says.

"Anyway, in a different script the series could definitely have found itself in yes that were really okay with us, but it didn't work out because of all sorts of budgets and all sorts of circumstances."

All the stars got along.

Assaf Amir (Photo: Reuven Castro)

"We finished filming on March 10, 2020. A day later, gatherings were banned."

With the network of contacts were even more advanced, almost on the verge of signing.

"They really wanted it, but as a producer I had a hard time with the conditions and prices they set," says Amir.

"Another problem was that they only asked for six episodes. I told myself that if you go with it to a body like a network, you don't need me, and I asked for an engine and packed one thing - before I release them to the network, let's try corporation."

And they tried - and then, he said, the turn came.

It took place after a meeting with Lisa Shiloah-Ozard, who was then the director of the corporation's drama department and now heads the Israeli Film Fund, and with her deputy Roni Perry, who currently heads the department.

The two proposed moving the scene of the scene behind the scenes of the theater world - an idea that definitely proved itself.

"It was clear to me right away that they were right," Amir recalled.

"On the other hand, the transition from sitcom to comedy drama and TV studio to the world of theater required rewriting of all the scripts, at a time when the project had been rolling for so long that some of us lost hope it would ever materialize. Despite the frustration from this procrastination, "And I think the long process we went through is evident in the quality of the result. Ironically, the move to the theater also made the project a lot more cinematic. Once we got out of the concept of a sitcom on a TV studio, everything opened up and became more alive."

Luck goes with the good ones, and from then on, the stars got along for the project.

"We finished filming after a night of canning on March 10, 2020," Amir recalls.

"A day later the gatherings were banned and it was impossible to take any more photos, but we had already moved into an editing room."

Corporate CEO Eldad Koblenz was quoted here as saying that the series would only wink at "vegan Tel Avivians." Did you also fear that the audience would be only niche, or that the feeling was that you had a hit in hand?

"Why is quality art a bad word?

In every other area of ​​life, we seek quality.

When you buy clothes, you are not looking for quality clothing?

So why in film and television is 'quality' a problematic word?

Take a look at the all-time favorite creations.

They are all also the best of all time.

There is no contradiction.

You don't have to be an expert to love good things.

A good joke is a good joke, characters are characters and a story is a story. "

General question - what do you think this series is about, in fact?

" At first it was a series about relationships.

"When we also moved into the world of theater, it became a series about a few other things - for example, ambition, dissatisfaction and the gap between how you are viewed and how you would like them to be viewed."

Sometimes it's worth the wait.

Erez Driggs and Noa Koller (Photo: Reuven Castro)

"Chances are we'll be disappointed, but that's not a reason not to do it."

"Time is important to me, and processes cannot be accelerated. On the other hand, the corporation's policy is to reduce the gaps between the seasons as much as possible."

Amir, it should be emphasized, signed on for the series not only as a producer but also one of its three creators, along with Koller and Driggs.

"We worked on everything together, and of course it was a very enjoyable job because it's such a talented pair of writers," he says.

"My role in the force reminds me of that of a music producer in music. The raw thing comes and then you have to work with it and polish it. Most of the work is in the editing room, because there is a one-to-nine ratio between the raw materials filmed and what goes in."

"And if it's music," he says, "I don't understand why film and television always focus on one person, not the whole team. If it was a band they would say 'he's on the drums, she's on the guitar, he's on the keyboards' and so on. So why not here? They say, "Boaz Frenkel on the direction, Yifat Tadmor on the editing, Ido Dolev on the artistic design, Itzik Portal on the photography?"

There are very stubborn rumors about uneasy disagreements between you, Noa and Erez.

They say there is no smoke without fire, so does that mean there won't be a second season either?

"I do not know where these publications come from, certainly not from me. We work relatively well together, and there have been almost no disagreements. It is clear that after so many years together and after such success, sometimes bands fall apart. I hope that does not happen to us."

Does that mean there is a chance there will be no second season?

"I do not see how we will not do another season together. It does not seem reasonable to me."

If so, who knows what the reactions will be this time.

Expectations will be high.

"Chances are we'll be disappointed, but that's not a reason not to do it."

when will it happen?

"Time is important to me, and it is impossible to speed up processes. On the other hand, the corporation's policy is to reduce the gaps between the seasons as much as possible, and regardless of that, it is clear to me that this should be done as quickly as possible."

"I do not see how we will not do another season together. It does not seem reasonable to me."

Assaf Amir (Photo: Reuven Castro)

Also following the series, Noa Koller is now almost officially recognized as the best actress in Israel, but until the middle of the previous decade she was quite anonymous.

Her initial breakthrough occurred thanks to "Crossing the Wall," also produced by Amir, who cast her after meeting her during the preliminary work on "Rehearsals."

"By the time we cast 'Cross the Wall,' Noa was already a housewife in the production company's office," he says.

"She was not exactly the character we were looking for at the time for the film, but we invited her to audition, and her abilities could not be ignored."


What makes Noa Koller a Noa Koller?

"We watched the audition and saw the acrobatics. She is able to take a scene at one point and go through all sorts of upheavals with it without blinking. It's a process that requires impressive acting abilities, and not many actors or actresses are able to do that."

Perfect casting.

Rodberg Lake, Yevgenia Dudina and Noa Koller in "Rehearsals" (Photo: Vered Adir)

Let's also talk about some other actresses in the series - Lake Rodberg, for example.

"Her character goes through the most interesting process in my opinion. Someone who has everything arranged in her head mechanically and unconsciously, then develops and progresses and experiences enlightenment. This is exactly the process that every screenwriter is looking for in their characters. It is very difficult to write such a character. "The time spent writing. As for Agam - she finally gets what she deserves in terms of audience reactions."

At what point did you think of Yevgenia Dudina for the role of theater director?

"It was clear that once there was a theater director, Evgenia was the one who had to play her."

And how did you discover Daniel Shapira, who plays Karina and managed to turn a secondary character into an icon?

"It was amazing. She was the first to come to the role. I remember Noa and Erez coming out of the audition and saying 'It doesn't make sense, how in the first audition did we find the perfect actress?'

To play Karina, you need a very unique talent, and Daniel caught it in an instant. "

The European director and his assistant, who come to direct a play in Israel, are played by two original Israelis - Roni Mendelssohn and Yuval Levy.

Why not cast someone whose origin is German or Austrian?

"We tried, we auditioned here and we did not find. During the filming, a German speaker stood next to Roni and made sure he pronounced the words properly, and Yuval just took over everything - both the character and the language. There was a thought after the filming to find someone in Europe to dub them, but then The corona came and stopped it, and I think we got along anyway. "

More on Walla!


A little key: The sub-players steal the show of "Rehearsals"

To the full article

"It was clear that once there was a theater director, Evgenia was the one who had to play her."

Assaf Amir (Photo: Reuven Castro)

And if it's already Europe, then in addition to another season, future plans for "rehearsals" also include its sale overseas.

"In the case of series in a corporation, this process falls on the producer," says Amir.

"There's interest abroad, talking to people, and I'm more interested in selling the series for broadcast as it is, and not necessarily for remake, which is easier.

Unlike 'Fauda' or 'Stisl', the series has no Israeli uniqueness.

It could have been both a Czech series, and there are pros and cons to it. "

And the most important question - how would they translate to English" pop up "?

" There was a debate about whether to translate it as you hear, or "Moochie".

'Peak' won.

A bigger dilemma is what to do when talking about experienced Didi.

How will an experienced Didi translate into English? "" By the

way, did you also start calling your partner a pop?

"It's better not to think about it at all, you probably do not know her."

Where did the decision to end chapter five with Omar Moskowitz's "tips come from? It was great.

"It comes from editor Yifat Tadmor.

After the filming, it became clear that we had to hold a minute of screen time when the credits ran, and each time we had to reinvent what women did at the end. "

More on Walla!


One should be careful with the word "perfect", but the "repetitions" of here 11 are almost like that

To the full article

"It was not 'Foxtrot' that caused a commotion, but Miri Regev caused a commotion. The people who are causing the riots are politicians or political activists who are hitchhiking, not the films themselves."

Another plot line that entered the Pantheon was the one where the Minister of Culture, played by Gila Almagor, comes to visit the theater.

For Amir, this was a turning point, as he worked with the actress in his first prominent roles in the film industry, as an actual producer on "Her Father's Summer" and "Life According to Agfa".

Amir also identifies with the sentence her character says in the theaters of the theater - "I prefer cinema."

Alongside his work as a producer, Amir also serves as the new chairman of the Israeli Film Academy, and this year was a particularly depressing baptism of fire - the Ophir Awards ceremony took place virtually, with the films being streamed only to members of the academy, without being exposed to the general public. They will open, we will all run to them, "he says." There are many Israeli films that have been waiting on the shelf this year and will only be released when the halls open, but the audience will not change.

After all, these films rarely screened anywhere they like movies completely new. "

How Winning" Leah Zemel, a lawyer, "Ophir not caused an uproar as it was with" Foxtrot "at the time. We are tired of such storms?

" No, foxtrot, caused an uproar, But Miri Regev caused a stir.

"The people who are causing the riots are politicians or political activists who are hitched, not the films themselves and certainly not what they say or do not say."

Lior Ashkenazi told us that in light of the work of the current Minister of Culture, Hili Trooper, he would have preferred Regev.

"not really no.

To drop all the blame on Trooper?

He had a good will, but culture is not a top priority in Israel. "

Another word about Israeli cinema -" Broken Wings "and" Fill the Void ". Both are huge local hits that have had a great impact on us, and have also been an international success. One memory of all. One of them?

"I remember my first reading of the 'Broken Wings' script was with my daughter, who was 12 at the time, and I said to her - 'Listen, this movie can go anywhere.'

As for ‘filling the space’, I remember we were with him at the Venice Film Festival.

Director Rama Burstein and I also stayed in the days after the screening, and star Hadas Yaron returned to Israel, and then they called me from the festival to ask Hadas to return.

I immediately understood why - because she won the lead actress award.

I called Hadas and she asked 'I was just in Venice, why do I have to go back'? ".

More on Walla!


"This is the worst government in the history of Israel. It is even worse than the government on Yom Kippur."

To the full article

Assaf Amir at the Venice Film Festival with Hadas Yaron, winner of the Lead Actress Award at the same festival (Photo: Imagebank, Jan Gwan)

Even before we calm down from "Rehearsals", Amir's new project, a documentary series called "In the Way of Music", directed by Uri Shmali, who created the wonderful short film "Hof HaMoed", will soon be here.

For Amir, this is another dive into the heritage of Israeli music, which has already dealt with previous projects he has produced, such as the series "The Albums" and "Arik Einstein - A Standard Love Song".

"The new series is based on interviews with artists we conducted in the past as part of a Lottery project," says Amir.

"When the corona started, I said to myself, 'Okay, filming is impossible, so let's take the interviews I did with the material already in the rich archive that the Broadcasting Authority bequeathed to the corporation, and connect them to something that will tell the story of these musicians, which is also our story. They will be dedicated to Danny Sanderson and Ahuva Ozeri. "

Let's go back to "rehearsals".

Will the final episode next week be longer than usual?

"Yeah, 41 minutes. Why is it so long? Because there was so much to tell. It all boils down to the show's premiere. Wait, is that considered a spoiler? I don't think there are spoilers in this series."

See you next year?

Assaf Amir (Photo: Reuven Castro)

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Source: walla

All tech articles on 2021-01-03

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