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Movie Overview: The Decoders

The Jesus Tomb team brings together archaeologists, scholars, journalists, and filmmakers with a wide range of experience and expertise. What they all share is a passion for asking questions.

Simcha Jacobovici

Director/Producer/Writer

Simcha Jacobovici (Associated Producers) is an Emmy-Award winning filmmaker, author, and journalist. An Israeli-born Canadian, Mr. Jacobovici is host and Executive Producer of the series The Naked Archaeologist (VISION TV), recently commissioned for a second 26-part series.

His feature documentaries have been praised internationally and include Falasha: Exile of the Black Jews (1983), Deadly Currents (1991), Hollywoodism: Jews, Movies & the American Dream (1997), Quest for the Lost Tribes (1999), and The Struma (2001). His film about the James ossuary, James, Brother of Jesus (2003), aired on Discovery Channels internationally.

Simcha’s collaboration with James Cameron began with The Exodus Decoded (History Channel) (2006), which they co-produced. It won a Gold World Medal at the 2007 NYFF.

James Cameron

Executive Producer

Best known for films like The Terminator (1984), which he wrote and directed, Aliens (1986), nominated for seven Academy Awards, The Abyss (1989), Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), True Lies (1994) and Titanic (1997), the highest grossing movie in history and winner of 11 Oscars, James Cameron has another side: documentaries.

His obsession with all things sci-fi combined with his fascination for the Titanic led him to organize a 2001 expedition to explore history’s most famous shipwreck. His move to documentary dates to this voyage, for which he co-designed miniature robotic vehicles as recorded in his 3-D Imax movie, Ghosts of The Abyss. Expedition: Bismarck followed in 2002 and Aliens of the Deep, his latest 3D IMAX film.

Cameron and his motion picture production company, Lightstorm Entertainment, are currently in production on his next directorial outing, Avatar (to be released in 2009).

Felix Golubev

Producer

Felix Golubev (Associated Producers) recently co-produced the award winning feature-length documentaries The Exodus Decoded for The History Channel in the U.S. and Discovery Channel Canada, and Sex Slaves for the CBC, Channel 4, and PBS. Other Golubev co-productions include the documentary series Betrayal, Impact of Terror (2004); James, Brother of Jesus (2003) for Discovery International; and The Struma (2001). Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Felix Golubev is a graduate of the Ryerson Polytechnic University Radio and Television Arts program in Toronto.

Dr. James D. Tabor

Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte

James D. Tabor is a biblical scholar and author whose current research involves Judaism in the time of Jesus, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and other ancient documents related to understanding the historical Jesus. His new book, The Jesus Dynasty: The Hidden History of Jesus, His Royal Family, and the Birth of Christianity was published by Simon & Schuster in April, 2006 to critical acclaim. His undergraduate and M.A. degrees are in Biblical Languages (Pepperdine University), and his Ph.D. is from the University of Chicago in the area of Biblical Studies, with an emphasis on Christian Origins and ancient Judaism. Tabor made headlines around the world in 2005 with his co-discovery (with archaeologist Shimon Gibson) of an ancient cave connected with the ministry of John the Baptist.

Dr. Charlie R. Pellegrino

Author

Charles R. Pellegrino is the best-selling author of several books relating to archaeology, including Return to Sodom and Gomorrah, Ghosts of the Titanic, Unearthing Atlantis, Ghosts of Vesuvius and the New York Times best seller Her Name, Titanic, which in part inspired James Cameron’s film Titanic. Further, his dinosaur-cloning formula inspired Michael Crichton's monster hit Jurassic Park. Plus, Charles Pellegrino introduced Jacobovici and Cameron to each other, making The Jesus Family Tomb film possible. Dr. Pellegrino (who has a Ph.D. in paleo-biology from the University of Wellington in New Zealand) lives in New York City. Most recently, he has co-authored the book The Jesus Family Tomb (Harper Collins, 2007) with Simcha Jacobovici. He also writes science fiction.

Ric Esther Bienstock

Producer

Ric Esther Bienstock has been producing and directing a diverse and eclectic range of films for over 15 years. Her most recent film Sex Slaves (also released as The Real Sex Traffic) recently won a British Broadcast Award for Best Documentary Programme as well as a Royal Television Society Award in the U.K. Her credits include: Impact of Terror, about a suicide bombing in Israel; Penn & Teller’s Magic and Mystery Tour, a three part series taking Penn & Teller to the back streets of China, India and Egypt; Boxing: In and Out of the Ring, an inside look at the business of boxing; The Money Shot, an investigation into the hard core pornography industry; Ebola: Inside an Outbreak, a frontline report from an Ebola outbreak in Zaire; and Ms. Conceptions, an entertaining look at single mothers by choice. She also served as location director on the Emmy Award winning Plague Monkeys and producer of the Cable Ace winner Deadly Currents a feature-length investigation of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.

She has won numerous awards including two Gemini Awards, a Genie, a Dupont-Columbia University Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism, a Cable Ace Award, two Gold Hugos from the Chicago Film Festival, a Distinguished Documentary Achievement Award from the IDA in Los Angeles, as well as two Hot Docs Awards. She was also the recipient of the Grand Prix at the Nyon International Film Festival in Switzerland, an Overseas Press Club of America Award for Best International Reporting, a Gracie from the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television and most recently Best Documentary at the UN Film Festival in New York.

Graeme Ball

Editor/Co-Writer

Graeme Ball has numerous credits in documentary and dramatic productions. His collaborations with Simcha Jacovobici began with the series The Naked Archaeologist on which he worked as both director and editor. This led to his work as the editor for the feature documentary, The Exodus Decoded (History Channel) which won a Gold World Medal at the 2007 NYFF.

Other feature documentaries Graeme has edited include: Small Town Gay Bar, nominated for Best Documentary Editing at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival; the multi-award winning documentary Continuous Journey, which has garnered international acclaim; and Lilith on Top, an award winning chronicle of Sarah McLachlan's all-female rock n' roll tour.

As well as editing the Discovery series Blueprint for Disaster and National Geographic’s Crisis Zone, Graeme wrote, directed, and co-edited the feature documentary Yukonna, which follows a four-month rafting trip down the Yukon River (National Geographic, Discovery and C.B.C).


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