Time for the Emmys
The Primetime Emmy Awards for excellence in television will be presented live at 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 25 on NBC. Seth Meyers is hosting. Below are the confirmed Jewish nominees in most categories.
Acting: Lena Dunham, 28, lead actress, comedy series, “Girls”; Lizzy Caplan, 32, lead actress, drama series, “Masters of Sex”; Julianna Margulies, 48, lead actress, drama series, “The Good Wife”; Mayim Bialik, 38, supporting actress, comedy series, “The Big Bang Theory”; Josh Charles, 42, supporting actor, drama series, “The Good Wife”; and Mandy Patinkin, 61, supporting actor, drama series, “Homeland.”
Writing: David Crane, 57, comedy series, “Episodes”; Jenji Kohan, 48, comedy series, “Orange Is the New Black” (yes, “Orange” is classified as a comedy); David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, both 43, drama series, “Game of Thrones”; Brad Falchuk, 42, miniseries or TV movie, “American Horror Story: Coven”; and Larry Kramer, 79, miniseries or TV movie, “The Normal Heart.” The writing Emmy for variety series includes the whole, usually large, writing staff. Three of the six nominated variety series have a Jewish star who also co-writes the show: Jon Stewart, 51, “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart”; Carrie Brownstein, 39, “Portlandia”; and Amy Schumer, 33, “Inside Amy Schumer.”
Outstanding series: The Emmy for outstanding (best) series in an individual category goes to the show’s many producers. The creator is almost always a producer, too. Here are the Jewish creators or co-creators of nominated series: Chuck Lorre, 66, and Bill Prady, 54, comedy, “The Big Bang Theory”; Kohan, comedy, “Orange Is the New Black”; Benioff and Weiss, drama, “Game of Thrones,” Matthew Weiner, 49, drama, “Mad Men”; Stewart, variety, “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart”; Falchuk, miniseries, “American Horror Story: Coven”; and David Simon, 53, miniseries, “Treme.” Finally, two nominees in the TV movie category have Jewish writers: “The Normal Heart” (Kramer) and “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight” (Shawn Slovo, 64).
At the movies
“Mad Men’s” Weiner is debuting as a feature film director with “Are You Here,” a comedy he also wrote. It opens Friday, Aug. 22. Steve (Owen Wilson) and Ben (Zach Galifianakis) co-star as close friends who return to Ben’s hometown when Ben’s estranged father dies. Ben, kind of a loser, is shocked to discover that he’s inherited the family fortune. Equally shocked are his sister (Amy Poehler) and his father’s young widow (Laura Ramsey). You guessed it: They want the money, too.
Opening on Aug. 29 in San Francisco and Berkeley is “Love Is Strange,” directed and written by filmmaker Ira Sachs, 48. It stars John Lithgow and Alfred Molina as a couple (Ben and George) who have lived together for 29 years and depend on George’s salary as a Catholic schoolteacher. They have to separate and live with friends and family when the church finds out George is gay and fires him.
Sachs posted the following comment on his film-production notes blog, just before he began making the film: ”My friend Itamar has told me for years that I have a JCC personality, meaning as much as I might try to pass as an arty New Yorker, I can never shed the suburban teen in me who was editor of the high school paper and president of the Jewish youth group. I felt very JCC today, and had a slight self-consciousness that my voluminous emails (and texts) were maybe driving some of my collaborators crazy.”
Columnist Nate Bloom, an Oaklander, can be reached at email@example.com.