Regina (Regina)

(2013, documentary, digital, black & white , 66 minutes)
co-produced with:United Kingdom, Germany

The Story of the World’s First Female Rabbi

Inspired by the book Regina Jonas: Die weltweit erste Rabbinerin by Elisa Klapheck

Although there is only one photo remained about Regina Jonas, the first female rabbi, Diana Groó attempted to recover and tell the touching life story of her protagonist with archive footages and amateur films reflecting also the history of the 20th century, This is the first film that commemorates the first female rabbi of the world who lived in Berlin.
The director recalls the first steps  of her creative documentary this way: "The story of Regina Jonas found me. My first feature film premiered at the Jewish Film Festival in Amsterdam in 2006 with opening remarks by Rabbi Eliza Klapechk. She came up to me after the screening and asked if I was interested in making a film about the world’s first woman rabbi. The topic didn’t appear to interest me at the time and it was only years later that I remembered Regina Jonas’ name and decided to find out who she actually was. That’s when I learned that she lived in Berlin in the 1930s and her greatest dream was to become a rabbi. She felt that she was born to be a rabbi and had known it from the time she was a little girl. But a woman wasn’t able to be a rabbi according to the laws of Jewish religion. I was deeply impressed by her short life story full of so much struggle and decided that the time had come to make a documentary film about her. But how could I tell her story with only a few letters and one surviving photo? That was the challenge…"

Awards

Jerusalem International Film Festival - 2013

Lia Award in Honor of Jerusalem Cinematheque founder Lia van Leer

National premiere:
2013