Black Hat

At first blush, Shmuel is a pious Hasidic man leading a fairly simple life. By day he dutifully prays at the local synagogue and manages a busy dry cleaner. But when his wife and two young children leave town for a few days, Shmuel will step out of his simple daily life and into a more complex world lit by the night. When he misplaces his black hat along the way, Shmuel’s two lives will interconnect in a way he never expected.

Producer

Yaniv Rokah, Phillip Guttmann (co-producer), Loriel Samaras (co-producer)

Director

Sarah Smith

DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY

Jeff Tomcho

WRITER

Phillip Guttmann

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Black Hat

Adam Silver stars as SHMUEL. At first glance, Shmuel is a pious, Hasidic Jewish man leading a fairly simple life. By day he dutifully prays at the local synagogue and also manages a very busy dry cleaner, a very normal life; however, when his wife and young children leave town for a few days, Shmuel turns into Chris, a gay man looking to find comfort with his true self.

Hasidic tradition condemns homosexuality so Shmuel must keep these two lives separate or completely risk the life he has built for himself. His wife and children leaving town provides the perfect opportunity to momentarily escape into his true self. He takes advantage and goes to a gay bar. He leaves his house in traditional Hasidic attire, but changes outside the bar into ‘normal’ clothing, puts his traditional garb in a bag and has a drink at the bar. He makes eye contact with a man across the bar, but nothing happens. Moments later, he meets some one else and follows the second man into the back of the bar. They embrace. After awhile, Shmuel leaves in a hurry, grabs his bag of clothes, but unknowingly his black hat falls off his bag of clothes and is left at the bar. The next morning, he can’t find his hat, but must hurry to his synagogue to not miss the Morning Prayer session. Upon arriving, the first man to make eye contact with Shmuel at the bar the night previous, holds Shmuel’s hat out for him. He is a member of Shmuel’s synagogue. The two share a moment as prayers begin.

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