Heir meets heiress
The New York Post recently reported that Ivanka Trump, 25, the daughter of billionaire Donald Trump, is taking conversion-to-Judaism classes in advance of marrying newspaper publisher Jared Kushner, also 25. Kushner comes from an Orthodox family that, like the (non-Jewish) Trumps, made billions in real estate. The Post says it has a “spy” who says that the couple were in “shul during all the holidays and ate in a sukkah every night.”
The Post story was “tastefully” titled “Shiksa No More.” Its item is buttressed by Ynet, which reported Oct. 31 that Ivanka began the process at Kehilath Jeshurun, an Orthodox synagogue on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
A hot estate
Forbes Magazine is out with its annual list of the highest-earning dead celebrities — in other words, celebs whose estates continue to rake in big bucks.
Albert Einstein, surprisingly, is No. 4 on the list, with his estate earning $18 million last year. The dollar total is propelled by the popularity of a Disney line of “Baby Einstein” interactive learning tools for infants and toddlers. Einstein left his literary estate and some of his personal effects (such as his Nobel Prize medal) to Israel’s Hebrew University. He also gave the university the right to license his image. So you don’t have to be a genius to figure out that some Baby Einstein revenue is aiding Israeli higher education.
The new season of “Law and Order: Criminal Intent” begins on the USA network Friday, Nov. 7 at 9 p.m. The first episode introduces Jeff Goldblum, 55, as Det. Zack Nichols, the new partner of Det. Megan Wheeler (Julianne Nicholson). Nichols is a cerebral cop, the son of two psychiatrists, who left the force for a time after the 9/11 attacks to “find the meaning of life.” He brings a quirky, Socratic approach to crime scene investigation.
The whole (voice) cast is back for “Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa” the sequel to the 2005 animated film “Madagascar,” about a group of Central Park Zoo animals escaping to the big island off the coast of Africa. The original ended with the animals boarding a plane bound for America, but in the sequel, their plane crash-lands on the plains of Africa. Ben Stiller is back as the voice of Alex, the gentle lion, and David Schwimmer again voices Melman, the hypochondriac giraffe. Sacha Baron Cohen returns as the voice of King Julien, a lemur. (Opens Nov. 7.)
Comedian David Wain (“Stella,” “Ten”) is the director/screenwriter of “Role Models,” a comedy in the mold of Judd Apatow‘s raunchy guy flicks like “Superbad.” Seann William Scott (“American Pie”) and Paul Rudd (“The 40-Year-Old Virgin”) play salesmen who trash a truck after drinking too many energy drinks. They agree to a court-imposed community service sentence that has them mentoring two troubled teens. Elizabeth Banks has a supporting role as Rudd’s on-again-off-again girlfriend. (Opens Nov. 7.)
Opening Nov. 14 is the newest James Bond film, “Quantum of Solace.” Bond (Daniel Craig) battles Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric), a member of an evil organization who intends to stage a coup d’état in Bolivia to take control of its water supply. Amalric, 43, is a top French actor and director. His father, a journalist, isn’t Jewish. His mother, Nicole Zand, is a Jew of Polish origin who was a literary critic for Le Monde. Amalric identifies as Jewish, although he is secular. Craig, who co-starred as a Mossad agent in “Munich,” plays another Jewish tough guy in “Defiance,” a film about Eastern European Jewish partisans who battle the Nazis. It opens in late December.
Columnist Nate Bloom , an Oaklander, can be reached at email@example.com.