Israel, 2015; 80 mins
Known as “Princess Shaw,” Samantha Montgomery, who lives in one of New Orleans' toughest neighborhoods, is committed to her dream of singing stardom. Although she posts a cappella clips of herself on YouTube to a handful of followers and auditions for The Voice, she seems destined to a life of anonymity. But unbeknownst to her, a world-renowned Israeli musician and mash-up artist named Kutiman is about to transform her into an online sensation. Called “astounding and thoroughly inspirational” (Variety) and “sweet and surprising” (MTV), this rousing film examines the nature of loneliness, connectivity, aspiration and fame in the Internet age. Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.
Ido Haar has worked extensively in the Israeli television industry, directing, shooting and editing social, political and cultural documentaries. His first feature documentary Melting Siberia, tracing his mother’s courageous quest to reunite with the Russian father who abandoned her mother shortly before her birth, was released theatrically in Israel and screened at film festivals worldwide. His next film 9 Star Hotel, a devastating cinema vérité portrait of nomadic young Palestinians who illegally cross into Israel, seeking work as day laborers, won the best documentary award at the Jerusalem International Film Festival and was broadcast on PBS’s P.O.V. series in the US. Haar has edited the television documentaries License to Art as well as several episodes of the original Israeli TV series In Treatment. The Israeli Ministry of Science and Culture selected him for the Art of Cinema Award in 2008. In 2009 Haar was a lecturer at the Minshar Art School & Center and International Filmmaker-in-Residence at the Jacob Burns Film Center in Pleasantville, New York.