Hitler Satire 'Jojo Rabbit' to Headline U.K. Jewish Film Festival

Taika Waititi's Oscar-tipped Toronto crowd-pleaser will close the 2019 edition of the event, which claims to have the largest Jewish film festival program in the world.

Taika Waititi’s anti-hate Nazi satire Jojo Rabbit, winner of the people’s choice award at the Toronto International Film Festival and now tipped for Oscar glory, is set to close the 2019 U.K. Jewish Film Festival.

The news, announced Thursday, may help settle any fears about the sensitive nature of the story, in which the New Zealand filmmaker, Jewish on his mother’s side, plays a boisterous and idiotic version of Adolf Hitler, who appears as the imaginary friend of a young boy in World War II Germany.

Boasting itself as the largest Jewish film festival program in the world, the 23rd U.K. Jewish Film Festival — which is set to run Nov. 6-12 across London with a U.K. tour hitting 20 cities — will include 96 films, alongside Q&As and discussions.

The event is set to open with the U.K. premiere of Elise Ozenberger’s comedy My Polish Honeymoon, with other gala screenings including the U.K. premiere of the spy drama The Operative, starring Diane Kruger and Martin Freeman, and the U.K. premiere of the Israeli political documentary The Human Factor from Dror Morer (The Gatekeepers) and Teddy Liefer (Icarus).

The 2019 edition of the fest is launching its first best documentary award, with a jury headed up by BBC Storyville’s Nick Fraser.

“We are the U.K.’s only film festival dedicated to telling stories about Jewish life and experience, and the majority of our U.K. and international films would not otherwise make it to cinemas or streaming services,” said U.K. Jewish Film CEO Michael Etherton.