The film depicts the life of a downtrodden Ethiopian immigrant family through the eyes of the young boy Eli, who tries to live out his dream of becoming a parachutist by playing with plastic bags.

  • Daniel Ambaya
  • Daniel Ambaya
  • Itzik Rivkin
  • Shani Steiner
  • Samuel Yirga
    Original Music
  • Oren Prada
    Key Cast
  • Sigal Prada
    Key Cast
  • Alon Prada
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Short, Student
  • Genres:
    Children, Immigration, Family
  • Runtime:
    8 minutes 5 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 25, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    12,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Sapir College - School of Audio and Visual Arts
  • Tel-Aviv International Student Film Festival
    Tel Aviv
    June 25, 2023
    World Premiere
Director Biography - Daniel Ambaya

Daniel was born in Be'er Sheva to Ethiopian immigrant parents. He studied animation in Sapir. During his studies, Daniel was exposed to the different kinds of animation techniques and began to specialize in 3D animation.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

When I was a child one of my favorite games was to go up the dinner table with a plastic bag in my hands and jump. In the mind of five-year-old me, the real world disappeared, and I was soaring through the clouds, just me and my parachute. This memory stayed with me, and is the basis of the film “Parachutist”. I come from a big family of ten people. My parents and five older siblings who then lived in a small village near the city of Gondar in Ethiopia, immigrated to Israel in 1990 to the city of Be’er Sheva. I am the sixth of ten children and the first that was born in Israel. My older siblings got to see and experience a culture which I could only imagine. Therefore, I always felt like I was experiencing the gap between our home and the Ethiopian culture and the Israeli culture to which I was born into.
As one of a family of ten, children to parent acclimating to a strange new land, I wanted to find a place of my own. I found it in my imagination. I too, like Eli, needed nothing more than a simple plastic bag to enter my own worlds, where I could whatever I wanted. I wanted to show what genuine pleasures even the simplest things can provide, and show that even within meager life you can find true happiness. I wanted to bring forward the reality I had lived and so decided to use real background from the neighborhood I grew up in. On top of the backgrounds I used 3D animation with gives a more realistic feeling rather than 2D or classical animation. It was important to me to use Ethiopian culture as a reference, and so I drew inspiration from traditional Ethiopian paintings which were found on old clothes and parchment papers.
The contrast between the realistic background and the characters, who are drawn in an Ethiopian style, further emphasizes the cultural dissonance I felt in my life. The only reality I knew was Israel but the culture in my home was completely different. I chose to convey this discordance through 3D animation over a realistic background. The combination of the two techniques represents the two different sides of my identity.