Rail buff whose films make it under their own steam

By Gita Conn, July 22, 2010

Gerry Troyna's passion for India, railways and films brought him a Royal Television Society Best Documentary Series Award last month for his Indian Hill Railways series, which the BBC repeated last week for the fifth or sixth time (he has lost count).

Looking more like a pop star in his shades, camouflage for blood-shot, jet-lagged eyes, he is full of praise for his far-away Indian team who, he says "actually make these films possible".


Aaron Sorkin to film presidential scandal

By Jennifer Lipman, July 19, 2010

Aaron Sorkin, the creator of White House television series the West Wing, is planning to bring another political story to the big screen.

Mr Sorkin is set to film the story of the rise and fall of John Edwards, the Democrat presidential contender brought down when a gossip magazine revealed his extramarital affair with an aide.


The film-maker who Ceausescu couldn't kill

By Stephen Applebaum, July 15, 2010

Radu Mihaileanu cannot help telling stories. "I don't know where it comes from," says the Franco-Romanian film-maker, "but I think it's deeply Jewish to hear stories and tell stories. We have always done that."


Review: Twilight: Eclipse

By Jonathan Foreman, July 8, 2010

I have not yet heard a convincing explanation for the general upsurge in popularity of vampire films and TV series in the last few years. But the particular success of the Twilight franchise, based on the mega-bestselling series of young adult novels by Mormon writer Stephenie Meyer, seems less of a mystery.


Glee creator to make film about Jewish activist

By Jennifer Lipman, July 5, 2010

A play about a Jewish Aids activist is to be made into a film by the creator of television show Glee.

American Jewish playwright Larry Kramer is to adapt his semi-autobiographical 1985 drama The Normal Heart for the screen.

Mr Kramer drew on his experiences as one of the founders of the Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) in the early 1980s to create the part of advocate Ned Weeks.

The GMHC were crucial in challenging the idea that Aids was only a “gay cancer”.


Spielberg slips down celebrity list

By Jennifer Lipman, June 29, 2010

Film director Steven Spielberg has seen his star power plummet in the last year according to the Forbes Celebrity 100 list.

Mr Spielberg, who directed the Oscar winning film version of Schindler’s List, was ranked 22nd on the annual list which ranks stars according to their earnings, web hits and media coverage, falling from the seventh spot in 2009.

However the 63-year-old director, one of several Jewish names who made the list, still commanded an impressive $100 million pay (£66 million) in the past year between June 2009 and 2010.


Jason Isaacs film wins festival award

By Jennifer Lipman, June 28, 2010

A black comedy starring Jewish actor Jason Isaacs has won a top prize at the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Skeletons, a film about two exorcists whose work starts to hit a little close to home, received the Michael Powell award for best new British feature film.

The jury said the film, released on July 2, won because of its "original vision and dark humour".

Mr Isaacs, perhaps best known for playing the evil Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter films, stars with Ed Gaughan and Andrew Buckley in the film.


Review: Whatever Works

June 24, 2010

Woody Allen's last film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, seemed to signal a long-awaited return to form after the embarrassing badness of his British-set movies. The fact that the next film was set in Manhattan gave further hope to long-suffering fans of the prolific writer-director. However, Whatever Works turns out to be only fitfully funny and at times strangely unpleasant.


Indian Jews protest Bollywood Hitler film

By Jennifer Lipman, June 23, 2010

Members of the Indian Jewish community have slammed plans to make a Bollywood film about Hitler’s final days.

Filming is set to start in two months time but Anupam Kher, the actor due to play the Nazi leader, has now dropped out after facing criticism.

At the beginning of June Indian producers announced they were making a film about the end of the Third Reich.


Twilight star remembers Nazi victims

By Jennifer Lipman, June 22, 2010

Twilight star Kristen Stewart has paid her respects to victims of the Holocaust on a visit to Berlin.

The actress, 20, was accompanied by minders as she walked around the Monument to the Murdered Jews of Europe.

Comprising nearly 3000 white concrete blocks, the memorial opened in 2005 to mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the Holocaust.

Ms Stewart was in the German capital to promote the latest outing in the Twilight saga, Eclipse.

The film, in which the actress plays a teenager in love with brooding vampire Edward Cullen, opens in British cinemas on July 9.