Adi Halfin is an award winning director and screenwriter. She grew up in Jerusalem and London and attended the Sam Spiegel Film School in Jerusalem, from which she graduated with honors. During her film studies she directed three shorts, which won prestigious prizes and were screened in over 70 film festivals, including Cannes and Berlinale.
Her dance video, “Home Alone” for the Batsheva Dance Company won ten international prizes, including Best Commercial and Best Inspirational at the LA Film Awards, and continues to gain worldwide recognition to this day. Her interpretation to Radiohead's "True Love Waits" featuring world-renowned dancer-choreographer Bobbi Jene Smith, has won seven awards, including Best Unofficial Music Video at the Los Angeles Music Video Festival, 2017. She also won the Genero TV contest for Mark Ronson’s “Daffodils”.
In addition to directing, Adi teaches production and directing in film schools and dance institutions, and tours the world with her unique dance-film workshop called “Dancing with The Camera”. Coming from a background of art and music, Adi loves to challenge the borders of filmmaking and get involved in as many art disciplines as possible – be it dance, fashion or fine arts. Music and dance are her biggest passions and she strives to showcase this passion in every part of the aesthetic details in her expressive works. Adi currently divides her time between Tel-Aviv and Berlin, where she directs commercials and music videos and is working on her first feature film.
My Goal of the Day: Staying centered. I’ve got so much going on at the moment, that it’s a real challenge. I’ve just started managing my schedule and writing all my tasks in my calendar. It’s such a basic thing, but I’ve never done it till now. It helps me get things done. So simple. So helpful.
My Thought of the Day: Every little thing’s gonna be alright.
My Deed of the Day: Cooking Chraime (Morrocan spicy fish) for my parents. I rarely get to cook for them and I know they like my cooking.
My Action of the Day: Writing a treatment for a music video. It’s on my calendar!
My Tip of the Day: Breathe
My Pic of the Day:
A Day in My Life:
What do you love most about Your City?
I divide my life between Tel-Aviv and Berlin, which are two very different cities.
Berlin is very easy going. It gives me the time and silence to write my script. I love that it’s down to earth and that no one’s running the rat-race like in other big cities. It really allows me the space to look inwards, both personally and artistically. I love that it’s international and very accessible. I meet people from so many different backgrounds and cultures, and for the first time in my life I have friends from Iran, Syria and Palestine. It’s something you can’t even imagine happening in Israel.
Tel-Aviv, on the other hand, is noisy, messy and passionate. I love the beach, my friends, the coffee, the sweat... Oh, and it has the best food in the world.
Favorite breakfast meal & restaurant?
In Tel-Aviv you can get a really rich and good breakfast anywhere. I used to love going to “Orna & Ella” but they closed down. It was a heartbreak. I like sitting at Café Sheleg on Geula St. Their omelette in pita bread is genius.
Berlin is a little challenging with food, so the best breakfasts are the ones my girlfriend makes me. She’s a real breakfast pro: Shakshuka or poached egg on avocado toast with a small salad on the side. She makes such beautiful food. It tastes so much better when it’s pretty.
What are you doing at:
6:00 AM – deeply sleeping, if my cat isn’t meowing
10:00 AM – Depending on when I woke up, I might be running, doing yoga or meditating, or in front of my computer after my morning routine.
12:00 PM - Favorite Power Lunch spot/meal?
At 12pm I’m probably having breakfast. I don’t eat in the morning, so I might be eating granola or oatmeal with banana and honey.
I can also grab a salmon bagel at Katie’s Blue Cat in my hood.
7:00 PM - That’s the time we eat dinner. Before I met my girlfriend I used to eat pretty late dinners, but she taught me that an early dinner is healthier. I always knew that. I just didn’t care too much about it.
11:00 PM – I’m a nocturnal creature. 11pm is when I wake up. I love the silence of the night when everyone’s asleep. I can focus so much better then. The night brings in the best ideas.
What drink do you need to get through the day and at the end (and how many)?
I’m a huge coffee person. I used to be one of those people that you can’t talk to before their morning coffee. One day on set, my assistant jumped on me during breakfast and started shooting schedule problems at me. I simply lifted my cup and said “everything will be solved after I finish this”. I don’t even remember what the problems were, but I do remember taking the time to drink that coffee.
About a year ago I went to shoot in India, and since I knew it would be challenging with coffee, I decided to do a month of rehab. I’ve wanted to do it for a while, but I didn’t imagine how terrible it would be. I had insane headaches and I was grumpy and moody, but it got better.
Since then I start my mornings with a freshly sliced ginger-turmeric tea, then I drink my first coffee around 11am, except if I’m on set. If I wake up early, I need that coffee to get me by. I drink around 2-3 cups of coffee a day and I am very specific about it. Black, small, strong with a bit of sugar.
Most used App/Favorite Instagram Account?
I don’t really have one. Instagram became kind of an automatic thing I do. I don’t love it, but it’s a great way to put yourself out there and to collect visual ideas.
What should everyone try at least once?
Any kind of travelling and as much possible. I would say go to India. It’s intense, but it’s a magical country and even though I was mostly working there, I got some profound insights on life there. There’s a lot of truth in India.
On the total opposite side – I recently visited LA for the first time, and I think that every filmmaker should go there at least once in their life. Once you’re there, you kind of get the whole extreme Hollywood thing. And I’m a huge Hollywood fan. I get the feeling LA and I will meet again soon…
Where do you enjoy getting lost?
Anywhere. But mostly in Tel-Aviv. I used to go on night walks and explore the dark side of town. I would go to the central bus station at night when it’s deserted, or I’d sneak into fancy hotels and go on expeditions between the luxurious top floors and the “behind-the scenes” basements – “the guts”. There’s so much going on there.
I love going to dark and dangerous places. It’s so thrilling going under the surface of the world. You get to see things you wouldn’t normally see, especially at night. And the night people are the most fascinating of them all.