Foreign Sister
Read 12858 times


Fifty-year-old Naomi is a woman who has everything, including a handsome husband and nice kids, but she is collapsing under the ordinariness of her successful life. She loses herself in the circle of housework and children. Just before the breaking point, she agrees to take Nigist, an Ethiopian Christian illegal worker, as a maid. The encounter between the two women channels Naomi's life in a new direction and exposes her to the world of migrant workers living among us. Paradoxically, parallels emerge between the problems of the two women, though their hardships have entirely different origins. This makes possible a temporary friendship between two women who represent two entirely different worlds. The events take place against the background of Israeli society, in which some 300,000 foreign workers live. Since the beginning of the 1980s, some 80,000 Ethiopian Jews have arrived in Israel. This unique wave of immigration attracted great public attention. Few are aware, however that among the workers who arrived to Israel from various African countries, there is also a community of several thousand Ethiopian Christians. The film Foreign Sister tells the story of this small and little known group.



2000 THe Volgin Award. First prize at the Jerusalem Int. Film Festival.

2001 "Special Prize" Berlin Black Film Festival.


Empathy for the plight of Israel's Ethiopian immigrants animates a film that won first prize at the Jerusalem International Film Festival in 2000 …. Dan Wolman, an Israeli film director with childhood roots in Ethiopia and years of TV work there, explores their problems in "Foreign Sister," a dramatic story about a Jewish housewife and her maid, linked by loss and laughter. Wolman's empathy can be traced to his father's background and an almost forgotten page of World War II history. After receiving his medical education in Mussolini's Italy, Wolman's father immigrated to Palestine and joined the British army. He served under the daring leadership of Major General Orde Charles Wingate, who led a guerrilla force into Italian-occupied Ethiopia to help restore Haile Selassie to the throne in 1941. Dr. Wolman became the emperor's personal physician, eventually bringing his wife and his son Dan to join him, before returning to Palestine in 1946.

Judy Stone - The Jewish daily Forward
  • Screenplay: Dan Wolman
  • Producer: Dan Wolman
  • D.O.P: Itamar Hadar
  • Editor: Shoshi Wolman
  • Music: Slava Ganelin
  • Main cast:
    Tamar Yerushalmi, Askala Markos, Zvi Salton, Miryam Nevo, & Neli Tagar