Comedian Larry David has been called a lot of things over the course of his long and successful career, but we’re pretty sure “peace maker” has never been one of them. Until now. Well, almost sort of, anyway.
Aaron Sorkin, the playwright, television writer and Oscar-winning screenwriter of “The Social Network,” is causing a stir with his new HBO series, “The Newsroom,” about the inside antics of a cable news show and its commentary on American journalism.
“Girls” begins with the conversation that many parents of 20-somethings dream of having someday real soon with their floundering children: No. More. Money.
In December 2009, Avi Nir, the chief executive of one of Israel’s largest broadcasting and production companies, invited the Hollywood agent Rick Rosen to spend a day at Keshet’s Tel Aviv office.
At the Golden Globe Awards in January, producer Howard Gordon stepped up to the stage to accept the award for Best Television Series — Drama for co-creating the breakout Showtime hit “Homeland.” In a single season, the show has become a sensation, edging the pay-cable channel closer to its rival HBO in number of subscribers and garnering profuse media attention and acclaim.
Ben Stiller reportedly has signed on to direct, produce and star in an HBO original series about a Jewish family called “All Talk.”
Three adjectives are often used to describe Larry David, the star and creator of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," which recently premiered its eighth season after two excruciating Curb-less years.
Two months before Arnold Schwarzenegger admitted to fathering a child with his housekeeper, I spent a week e-mailing rabbis about adultery. My question to them was this: Would they agree to a public dialogue with the creator of an online matchmaking service for people seeking extramarital affairs? One after another, they said no.
In its last two seasons, Larry David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” pushed politically correct notions of Jewish identity and race to cringe-worthy and hilarious extremes. David, playing an exaggerated version of his misanthropic self, briefly made nice when he mistakenly believed he had been adopted and was not born Jewish, then he returned to his callous self when his wife — now estranged — took in an African American family that had been displaced by Hurricane Katrina. “So your last name is Black,” he says to the family upon their first meeting, arriving late to pick them up at the airport. “That’d be like if my last name were Jew: Larry Jew.”
When Noa Tishby moved from Tel Aviv to Los Angeles, it was to make it as an actress. Two years later, she's now a history-making producer, spearheading the first original Israeli TV drama series to be picked up by an American network.
Larry David, the producer-writer-star of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" has just finished airing the fifth season of his HBO program. Many people find him hilarious. Others find him annoying in the extreme.
Jewish girl stereotypes get tossed -- including one you might have heard about them being prudes -- when "Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad" makes its West Coast debut this Thursday night at Tangier.
As creator and emcee Susannah Perlman describes it, the variety show features comedy, spoken word, music and burlesque acts that speak to the Jewish condition, performed by women who have appeared on Comedy Central, HBO, MTV and late night television.
After director Mike Nichols took his wife, Diane Sawyer, to the first screening of his six-hour HBO film of Tony Kushner's epoch-defining, "Angels in America." She said, "I know what this is about. It's about being Jewish."
She's right, but it's also about being gay in the latter 20 years of the 20th century. It's about friendship and redemption. It's about the feeling we all have in our darker hours that as a species, we could be on the verge of extinction. It's about the struggle for the soul of America between the right and the left, and it's about so many other things that it's virtually impossible to describe.
Oliver Stone, working with French and Spanish producers, makes it harder to follow the already complex thread of the story by constantly intercutting between different scenes and spokesmen.
"Six Feet Under" writer-producer Jill Soloway admits the HBO funeral parlor family drama is like a weekly commercial for taharah, the Jewish ritual of cleansing a dead body prior to burial.
Forget the no-open-casket Jewish tradition: On Alan Ball's quirky hit, words like "skin slippage" are de rigueur and corpses are regularly drained and made-up for display. "It's pretty gross," concedes Temple Israel of Hollywood member Soloway, who's invented a rabbi character to proffer Jewish perspectives on death.
So he laid on the shtick to play Rabbi Jacobsen in Pete Jones' melodramatic film, "Stolen Summer," which opens today in Los Angeles. The comedy-drama follows a Catholic kid bent on converting the rabbi's son. But Pollak didn't need to study Torah to prepare for his role. "I'm an old pro," he says. "My first act was lip-syncing Bill Cosby's 'Noah and the Lord' bit when I was 10." By age 18, Pollak was performing hilarious "Columbo" impressions while moving just one eye.
Kenneth Branagh, dapper in his SS costume, his blond hair neatly slicked back, coldly spat out the words during production of the HBO film "Conspiracy": "Dead men don't hump. Dead women don't get pregnant. Death is the most reliable form of sterilization."
He was sitting on a soundstage that was an exact reproduction of the luxurious Wannsee villa where 15 high-ranking Nazis, over lavish food and drink, matter-of-factly planned the Final Solution on Jan. 20, 1942. Branagh, the Oscar-nominated actor-director, was playing SS Gen. Reinhard Heydrich, who led the brief, top-secret meeting like a ruthless CEO. His fellow actors sipped liquor and puffed cigars as Branagh, feeling revolted, completed the scene. "It was very claustrophobic, very smoky, because once those set doors were closed, all the actors were in there all the time," said Branagh, who is best-known for directing and starring in film adaptations of Shakespearean plays. "That meant that at the end of every take, you rushed out of the room, peeled off your SS uniform, and took a breather from that creepily atmospheric place."