Wednesday, December 07, 2022

Ariela Rozentul is a 12-year-old girl from Cliffside Park and is currently a student at Yeshivat He’Atid in Teaneck. This year Ariela wrote and produced her first short independent film, “Butterfly,” which was inspired by true events.

“Butterfly” features a young girl, played by Ariela, who tries to delve into the reasons why some people die young. Ariela had a friend who died at a young age in a car accident, so she described how this film is about her “trying to understand the meaning of life and reasons why even though some people leave this world way too early, their life has a huge meaning and impact on others.” The butterfly, a beautiful and graceful insect, can signify all the loved ones who have been lost to us but are now at peace circling over us.

Ariela has been acting on stage and in front of cameras since she was 6 years old, but she has always loved to write and has long dreamed of creating her own films. Her acting coach and mentor encouraged her to write “Butterfly.” Ariela feels fortunate to have found amazingly creative directors who believed in her film; talented actors who brought so much depth to the story; as well as a talented cinematographer and music producer.

With every large plan comes challenges. Once Ariela had her team lined up, she needed to get funding for her film.

“Butterfly” has been selected by 13 international film festivals and so far has received 10 awards, including Best Actor, Best Producer and Best Original Song. The film was shown at the Bergen Film Festival on July 22, and is waiting to be reviewed by a few more festivals, at which point Ariela plans to make “Butterfly” available online for everyone to see.

Currently, Ariela is working on finishing another short film, with the same directors from “Butterfly,” and aims to submit it to various film festivals. She is also working on a feature film and/or television series that would appeal to teens and young adults, which she says is “something deep that young people can relate to. I am really hoping to find funding to create this new project!”

Julianne Katz is a rising senior at BCHA and an intern at The Jewish Link.

Sign up now!