Israeli actress Gal Gadot, of Wonder Woman fame, is partnering with Keshet International, the global production and distribution arm of Israeli media company Keshet Media Group, to take on a film adaptation of a 2014 novel that was banned in Israeli high schools.
According to a Variety Magazine report on Wednesday, Gadot’s new production company Pilot Wave, formed with husband Jaron Varsano, will co-produce a movie based on the book “All The Rivers” by author Dorit Rabinyan (published in Israel as “Borderlife”). The acclaimed, award-winning book tells the story of an Israeli woman, Liat, and a Palestinian man, Hilmi, who meet in New York and fall into a sweeping, complicated love affair.
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In late 2015, the book was drawn into the center of controversy when Israel’s Ministry of Education then led by Naftali Bennett banned it from the mandatory reading list in Israeli high schools. Among the reasons stated by the ministry at the time was the need to maintain what it referred to as “the identity and the heritage of students in every sector,” and the belief that “intimate relations between Jews and non-Jews threatens the separate identity.” The ban, however, caused demand for the book to surge.
It was not clear whether Gadot would have a starring role in the film adaptation, according to the report.
Pilot Wave’s first project, announced earlier this year, is a WWII historical thriller about Irena Sendler, a social worker and nurse who saved over 2,500 children in Nazi-occupied Poland by helping to smuggle them out of the Warsaw Ghetto.
“As producers, we want to help bring stories that have inspired us to life,” Gadot and Varsano told Deadline in October. “Pilot Wave will create content that promotes the perspectives and experiences of unique people and produce impactful stories aimed at igniting the imagination.”
Gadot’s 2017 film Wonder Woman nabbed more than $800 million at the box office worldwide, making it the 5th highest-grossing US superhero movie of all time.
Her Wonder Woman 1984 sequel is set to be released next summer.