Jewish Journal


September 27, 2008

Paul Newman dies at 83



My wife was standing behind me as we read the obituary for Paul Newman, and she’s right: They don’t make movie stars that him anymore.

The 83-year-old actor transcended tectonic shifts in Hollywood, and over the course of an epic career he worked with the best directors—Hitchcock, Scorcese, the Coen Brothers—and actors—Robert Redford, Tom Hanks and Elizabeth Taylor—of the last half century.

“The Sting” is the first movie I remember seeing Newman star in. It remains a favorite, as does “Exodus,” in which Newman plays the über-cool sabra Ari Ben Canaan and leads Jewish refugees on a fugitive ship traveling from Cypress to Palestine. His best line, however, comes from “Cool Hand Luke,” in which he dryly remarks during a card game that “sometimes nothing’s a real cool hand.”

As we all know from the “Chanukah Song,” Paul Newman was Jewish. It came from his father. And though Newman might not have been heckshered, he chose to identify as a Jew “because it is more challenging.”

In June, as news of Newman’s struggle with cancer spread, Helen Jupiter at Jewcy offered this appreciation for a real mensch:

“Altruistic, creative, entrepreneurial, and dedicated to the common good,” she wrote, “Paul Newman is a great symbol of what each of us can achieve when we allow ourselves to be fearlessly—but thoughtfully—guided by our hearts.”

JewishJournal.com is produced by TRIBE Media Corp., a non-profit media company whose mission is to inform, connect and enlighten community
through independent journalism. TRIBE Media produces the 150,000-reader print weekly Jewish Journal in Los Angeles – the largest Jewish print
weekly in the West – and the monthly glossy Tribe magazine (TribeJournal.com). Please support us by clicking here.

© Copyright 2016 Tribe Media Corp.
All rights reserved. JewishJournal.com is hosted by Nexcess.net
Web Design & Development by Hop Studios 0.2874 / 52