NEW YORK — "Family in Transition" is a new documentary that tells the story of an Israeli family adjusting to their husband and father transitioning into a woman.
Set in the northern Israeli town of Nahariya and shot over two years, the film follows husband and wife Amit and Galilt Tsuk, who have been married for 20 years and have four children.
It's a "film about love," explains producer Tal Barda. "There's so many forms of love and so many changes but it's still very much a film about finding your own path and being a loving person and partner and mother and wife or whatever it is. So that is very much the message of the film."
The 70-minute documentary , directed by Ofir Trainin, shows how the family pulls together to support Amit when he reveals his desire to undergo gender-reassignment surgery.
"One of my daughters came to her mother, to Galit, and she said, 'Our daddy is sick or he is hiding a big secret,'" said Amit. "And then we decided that we have to go and tell the children what is happening."
They started with the eldest, 17-year-old Yuval. The couple admitted they didn't know what was going to happen. "So she said, 'OK. I will try. We will be like the Kardashian family.' All that matters to her back then was that we're staying together," said Amit.
While some extended family members did not initially fully support Amit's decision, she and her wife and kids remained close. The family bond seemed solid at first, but cracks in their relationships began to show. Barda said the initial impulse was to show a love story about "a husband and wife who become wife and wife" but "at some moment this thing kind of collapses."
While her family's journey wasn't easy, Amit said she hopes that by letting cameras film the process they can help others.
"I think that I sacrifice my private life each day," she said, "to make Israel, and I hope the world, a better place for our community and to make people better people."