Tuesday, April 13th 2021   |

Film & TV

NBC pulls episode of ‘Nurses’ show after backlash over its portrayal of Orthodox Jews

By GABE FRIEDMAN

(JTA) — NBC pulled an episode of the show “Nurses” that aired on the channel on Feb. 9, responding to pressure from Jewish groups that said it contained an anti-Semitic storyline about Orthodox Jews.

An NBC source told Variety that it had consulted with “leading Jewish organizations” before making the move on Thursday.

In the episode of the medical drama titled “Achilles Heel,” a young Hasidic patient is...

What Jewish comedians made of Michael Che’s Israel Joke

(JTA) — It’s almost Purim, which means I am busy writing jokes that poke fun at the stuff we do and obsess about as Jews without offending too many people. Not always easy, and that’s when I am writing for an audience that I know extremely well.

Now imagine writing Jewish jokes outside the bubble. “Saturday Night Live” found out the hard way after a joke about Israel went viral for...

Sacha Baron Cohen says his days of disguise pranks are over

(JTA) — Sacha Baron Cohen says his days of dressing up as characters such as Borat Sagdiyev, the anti-Semitic Kazakh journalist that made the Jewish actor a star, are behind him. He said he has been sued and nearly arrested over the course of filming his movies and shows, most of which involve a disguised Cohen tricking the people around him into saying or doing absurd things.

“At some point,...

Tiffany Haddish, Nick Cannon and Mayim Bialik among 170 to sign statement launching Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance

By GABE FRIEDMAN

(JTA) — More than 170 entertainment industry leaders have signed a unity statement marking the launch of the Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance designed to foster dialogue and mutual understanding.

The high-profile signees include Tiffany Haddish (who is Black and Jewish), Mayim Bialik, NFL player Zach Banner (who has emerged as a leading pro athlete voice against anti-Semitism), Terry Crews, Herbie Hancock, Sharon Osbourne and Nick Cannon (who apologized...

2021 Golden Globes: All the Jewish nominees, from ‘Mank’ to ‘Borat’ to ‘Unorthodox’

By EMILY BURACK

(JTA) — “Schitt’s Creek” is trying to pick up in the Golden Globes where it left off in the fall with its historic Emmys sweep.

The show about a wealthy interfaith Jewish family was nominated Wednesday for five awards, including four for the main actors and one for best series.

There are plenty of other Jewish nominations, too, notably “Mank,” the acclaimed film on the story of Jewish...

‘Saved By the Bell’ star Dustin Diamond dies at 44

(JTA) — Dustin Diamond, the Jewish actor who played Screech in the early 1990s sitcom “Saved By the Bell,” has died at 44 from lung cancer.

In the series about a fictional Los Angeles high school, Screech was a nerdy sidekick to main character Zack Morris. Diamond reprised the role in two successful spinoff series throughout the ’90s.

Diamond had first shared news of his diagnosis last month. TMZ reported...

In this exclusive ‘Finding Your Roots’ clip, journalist Nina Totenberg learns of a family member’s daring Holocaust escape

By GABE FRIEDMAN

(JTA) — In this Tuesday’s episode of the celebrity genealogy show “Finding Your Roots,” pioneering journalist Nina Totenberg and TV personality Andy Cohen learn about the deep Jewish roots of their family trees.

In this exclusive clip from Totenberg’s segment, she reacts to learning how one of her grandmothers escaped to the United States during the Holocaust by way of Portugal with the help of a sympathetic...

Mayim Bialik to guest host ‘Jeopardy!’ while the show seeks a permanent replacement for the late Alex Trebek

(JTA) — Mayim Bialik. The correct answer is: Who is the upcoming Jewish guest host of “Jeopardy!”? Bialik, star of “The Big Bang Theory” and other sitcoms who has written for the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, has been named one of four temporary celebrity guest hosts while the show finds a permanent replacement for the late Alex Trebek.

Ken Jennings, the “Jeopardy!” champion and among its all-time money winners, is hosting...

Larry King is hospitalized with COVID

(JTA) — Larry King, the celebrity radio and TV host who is the son of Orthodox Jewish immigrants, was moved out of ICU and is breathing on his own, according to a spokesman at a Los Angeles hospital, where he has been hospitalized with COVID for over a week.

Roger Friedman’s Showbiz 411 site first reported the news Friday, and CNN confirmed it on Saturday through talking with an unnamed...

Joan Micklin Silver, who directed the classic Jewish films ‘Crossing Delancey’ and ‘Hester Street,’ dies at 85

By GABE FRIEDMAN

(JTA) — Joan Micklin Silver, a pioneering female filmmaker who directed two of Hollywood’s most Jewish films, has died at 85. The cause was vascular dementia, according to The New York Times.

Silver was best known for directing “Crossing Delancey,” the Lower East Side rom-com involving a pickle maker, and “Hester Street,” an influential low-budget tale about Yiddish-speaking Jewish immigrants. But she was also recognized as one...