French documentary filmmaker and producer Claude Lanzmann will be honored at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival, where he spoke about filming his famous "Shoah" documentary.
Writer and film director Nora Ephron, known for work on movies such as "When Harry Met Sally," has died in New York at age 71, according to media reports Tuesday night, hours after it was first revealed that she was gravely ill and near death.
Running a television show is the sort of job that rarely leaves you with free-time on your hands, but during the writers' strike of 2007, “24” executive producer Howard Gordon suddenly found himself with just that – free time, and no scripts to write. So he decided to try his hand at a novel instead. Gordon's debut effort, an international thriller titled “Gideon's War,” hits shelves this month.
"I really, really believe that I have the skills, the courage, the conviction and the know-how to make a difference in the peace process in the Middle East."
The story is told from the perspective of 8-year-old Bruno (Asa Butterfield), who is chagrined when his father (David Thewlis, who plays Remus Lupin in the "Potter" films) takes over as commandant of a remote labor-turned-death camp.
While taking violin lessons at The Juilliard School, Wise became interested in musical theater. He has since followed two paths in that field -- as a creative producer, responsible for some projects from conception to staging, and as an international presenter of successful Broadway shows.
"I kiss 400 people everyday," says Irene Dreayer, executive producer of Disney Channel's "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody." "From day one, I hugged and kissed everybody, and it allowed everyone on the show to become family. That's the Jewish producer in me; family is everything."
Platt has crossed more than a few bridges himself. After he graduated from Penn, where he produced a small off-Broadway musical titled, "Francis," about St. Francis of Assisi, Platt studied entertainment law at NYU, while interning with agent Sam Cohn at International Creative Management, Inc. in New York.
Eighteen years ago, in "The Player," Tolkin introduced us to Griffin Mill, a studio executive who gets away with murder -- literally.
Scott Steindorff is a happy man. A successful movie and TV producer, his NBC series, "Las Vegas," just got picked up for another season; he won an Golden Globe for the HBO miniseries, "Empire Falls," starring Paul Newman, and produced the feature film of Philip Roth's "The Human Stain" with Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman. Upcoming on Steindorff's slate are adaptations of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's "Love in the Time of Cholera," TC Boyle's "The Tortilla Curtain," Michael Connolly's "The Lincoln Lawyer," "Penelope" starring Reese Witherspoon and remakes of the classic films "Ikiru" and "Rififi." All this and he's only been in the film business six years.
Roger Mayer lounges in the living room of his house on Benedict Canyon Road, a comfortable two-story clapboard structure in Beverly Hills. The newly minted octogenarian, who looks at least 10 years younger, effortlessly recalls dates, numbers and deals from decades ago.
"Keeping Up With the Steins" proves that you don't have to be Jewish to make a funny, insider Jewish film, or that if you grow up in the Bronx or went to school in North Hollywood, you become a Jew by osmosis.
Caroline Baron, the film's producer who worked with Hoffman on "Flawless" and has known screenwriter Dan Futterman and Miller for a number of years, said that all films present challenges, but that from the outset, she had "100 percent confidence in Bennett as a director and Phil as an actor."
Hollywood exports are a big business, and U.S. studios sometimes rake in more from international licensing than domestic. Even though Israeli acquisitions account for only 2 percent of overseas television exports, Stern thinks Israel gets special attention.
In the beginning, there was sweet wine. Really, really sweet wine. But as the kosher market broadened, a trickle of new wines targeted to a more sophisticated audience began to raise expectations among Jewish wine lovers.
In case you missed them the first time around, Was (Not Was) had a good run in the 1980s as Ze recording artists, with two notable hits: "Walk the Dinosaur" and "Spy in the House of Love." Their songs veered from funk classics to art-house wit (i.e., turns out "Dinosaur" is a pop song about nuclear destruction -- who knew?).
Powerful women in Hollywood, back in 1978, were as prevalent as communists during the blacklist. Probably even less so. That's when Loreen Arbus came to town.
First came God. Then came Godot. Then came Woody Allen. Actually, none of them ever showed up -- not in the play "Waiting for Godot" or the newly acclaimed short feature film parodying it, "Waiting for Woody Allen."
Producer Robert Evans' best-selling autobiography, "The Kid Stays in the Picture," was chosen by the Library of Congress as a required text for every branch. The audio version of "The Kid" voiced by Evans has become a cult sensation, passed from hand to hand, making Evans an idol to a new generation.
As a boy growing up in Los Angeles, Eugene Brown recalls no fondness for the Orthodox shul he was expected to attend after school even though his parents were not members.
Gays weren't even on the radar in Ilene Chaiken's Jewish community in Philadelphia back in the 1960s.
Karen Levine never had plans to write a book.
Then in 2001, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. radio producer came across an article in the Canadian Jewish News about a young Japanese woman, urged on by Tokyo schoolchildren studying the Holocaust, who traveled halfway round the world to find the owner of a child's battered suitcase. That child, Hana Brady, had died in Auschwitz at age 13, but the determined young woman tracked down Hana's brother George, who had survived Auschwitz and found a new life in Toronto.
Levine made a radio documentary chronicling the meeting between Fumiko Ishioka and George Brady, and that led her to write a children's book, "Hana's Suitcase," a gripping detective story and an inspirational saga.
Senior City of Los Angeles officials, visiting Israel under the auspices of the L.A. Jewish Federation, presented a proclamation from the L.A. City Council to Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai praising Israel as a "bedrock of stability, democracy and modernity with shared common values of pluralism and cultural diversity."
Chabad's annual "L'Chaim -- To Life!" telethon will look a little different this Sept. 14 since two new producers are helming the 23-year-old fundraiser.
In his 86th year and in his 86th movie, Kirk Douglas has fulfilled a long-cherished dream by uniting his clan in the film, "It Runs in the Family."
"Guib a click, dos is YidishMusic."
When the now-legendary film director Martin Scorsese first discovered Herbert Asbury's book, "Gangs of New York," in 1970 and decided to make it into a film, Rick Schwartz was a 2-year-old growing up in a modern Orthodox home in Teaneck, N.J.
Marvin Mirisch, one of three brothers who formed the Mirisch Co. motion picture production company, died on Nov. 17 of undisclosed causes at UCLA Medical Center.
Every day during the summer of 1942, 12-year-old Robert Evans set out with a copy of Radio Registry under his arm and hit every audition room in New York.
Mike Medavoy's quote on the back of his new book, "You're Only as Good as Your Next One" (Pocket Books), sums up what makes a successful producer or studio chief: "If I had a talent for anything, it was a talent for knowing who was talented." "It sums up what makes a good anything," Medavoy told The Journal. "If I weren't in this business, I probably would have been a teacher, which would have been fine."
On April 18, 1943, as the vaunted German army marched in to liquidate the Warsaw Ghetto, a few hundred Jewish resistance fighters, armed with pistols, rifles and homemade Molotov cocktails, confronted the Nazi soldiers and held them at bay for almost a month.
Mallory Lewis grew up with a very famous sister, but she laughs if you ask about sibling rivalry. "She slept in a shoebox in the closet, I had my own room, it was fine by me."
But this is no horror story of an evil stepsister. Mallory Lewis' sister is Lamb Chop, the adorable, perpetually 6-year-old puppet of children's entertainer Shari Lewis. Beloved by millions since their 1957 debut on "The Captain Kangaroo Show," Shari Lewis and Lamb Chop would go on to entertain generations of kids with their PBS series and videos. Mallory Lewis began writing her mom's newspaper column for kids at the age of 12, and by the early '90s, she was head writer and producer for mom's series.
It was early June, and the clock was ticking ominously for composer William Goldstein.
Legendary filmmaker Stanley Earl Kramer, best known for films such as the classic western "High Noon," died on Feb. 19 of pneumonia. He was 87.
Why do most people want to believe that a successful career in show business happens by luck? Maybe it's because for people who haven't made it, that's a good explanation or excuse.
All the time Deborah Oppenheimer was growing up, her grandparents remained silent, one-dimensional portraits in a silver frame in the living room. "They were always there but never referred to," says Oppenheimer, who is in her 40's and the executive producer of "Norm" and "The Drew Carey Show." "I knew virtually nothing about them."
Around the end of August, every year for the past 20 years, the Chabad Telethon comes around. It gets so you can't drive anywhere without seeing the purple banners featuring the silhouette of a man wearing tzitzit and dancing joyously to some unheard song.
If the mark of a fully matured film industry is that directors have logged enough time behind the camera that one can spot personal styles emerging over several films, then this year's Israel Film Festival proves that the Israelis have definitely reached that plateau.
Even for an international film producer and inveterate traveler, Arthur Cohn has covered a lot of territory recently.
During the last week in October, the winner of a record five Oscars and producer of "The Garden of the Finzi-Continis" and "Central Station" was feted in Shanghai at his very own "Arthur Cohn Day" by the Chinese government and film industry.
Peter Mehlman, the former writer and co-executive producer of "Seinfeld," is sitting at a corner table at Shutters on the Beach, wearing mismatched sweats and a day's worth of stubble.
There isn't much Irwin Winkler doesn't know about making movies, which is maybe why, unlike a lot of the young hotshots who've been in the business five seconds, his favorite subject is not his own genius.
On the old Paramount Ranch deep in the San Fernando Valley, Woodstock has returned -- as in the world's greatest love-in, the '60s festival that affected a generation. Producer Lynda Obst, who is responsible for this unnerving flashback, watches intensely from the sidelines with a proprietary eye.
Makers of short films routinely encounter the difficulty of getting their movies seen by an audience greater than their parents, cast and crew. But the makers of "Visas and Virtues"have had better luck than most.
Michele Ohayon was nursing her 2-month-old baby when the phone rang at 5:45 a.m. and the caller answered a silent prayer: Ohayon's film, "Colors Straight Up," had been nominated as one of five documentary features in contention for an Academy Award.
Veteran television writer/producer Saul Turteltaub had to wait 44 years for his first film credit, "For Roseanna," starring Mercedes Reuhl and Jean Reno.
Saul Turteltaub, a name-brand television comedy writer and producer for 44 years, remembers submitting his first movie screenplay.
Doctorow was wary when the call from Toronto came four years ago. Garth Drabinsky, the maverick theater producer who runs his company like a 1930s movie mogul, had a proposition: He wanted to turn Doctorow's 1975 best seller, "Ragtime," into a musical. Drabinsky had won Tonys and made millions with "Show Boat" and "Kiss of the Spider Woman," and wanted to repeat with "Ragtime."