I was born in Israel, one month after my parents emigrated from the former Soviet Union. My father was a film director, my mother a screenwriter. My parents risked their lives escaping the communist regime.
They left in search of freedom. This was not just an idea to them, not just an abstract concept.
Freedom defined them.
Artistic freedom. Freedom of expression.
They were willing to die for it.
In Israel, life proved challenging for them in so many ways. It nearly broke them. A new language. A completely foreign culture. Not enough work. Not enough opportunity. A small film industry, and a long queue of Israeli directors waiting and willing to work.
Eventually my parents realized their turn may never come. They'd done it before. They could do it again. They packed up and went looking for their dreams again, beyond the horizon.
After Israel, there was Canada, for almost a decade. But eventually, the United States beckoned. And they were always trying to get closer to Hollywood. This was a time of hope for our family. Hope, followed by disappointment, followed by new hopes. Maybe one lifetime is not enough for such a journey.
They got close to Hollywood, close enough for me to go to college in Los Angeles. Film School at USC.
My parents brought me to this country, a country where we're all free to express ourselves, where I'm now fortunate enough to make movies of my own.
I hope to live up to some small part of the sacrifices they made to get me here.