Fashion designer 'Joseph' dies

By Jessica Elgot, March 22, 2010

The “Joseph” who brought high fashion to the high street, Joseph Ettedgu, has died aged 74.

Mr Ettedgui, from a French-Moroccan Jewish family, arrived in Britain in 1960 as Morocco gained independence and Jewish families left the country in droves for France or Israel.

But Mr Ettedgui “fell in love with London” and set up a hairdressing salon on the King’s Road.


The Simpsons in Israel to be screened next week

By Jessica Elgot, March 17, 2010

Israel has welcomed America’s most famous yellow family in a new episode of The Simpsons to be released in the US next week.

Comedian Sacha Baron Cohen will star as an Israeli tour guide who takes Homer and Bart around Jerusalem, including a trip to the Western Wall.

During the episode, “The Greatest Story ever Doh’ed” Homer experiences “Jerusalem Syndrome” and becomes convinced he is the Messiah.

Producer Al Jean said Mr Baron-Cohen’s character would have political clashes with Marge Simpson.


Kate Winslet and Sam Mendes split

By Jessica Elgot, March 15, 2010

British film director Sam Mendes and his wife Kate Winslet have parted, the couple’s lawyer has confirmed.
They married in 2003, and have one son, Joe.

Mr Mendes directed her in one of his latest films Revolutionary Road. They met in 2001, when he tried to persuade her to appear in a play at the Donmar Warehouse, in Covent Garden, where he was artistic director. He had already won an Oscar for Best Director for his debut film, American Beauty.


Bar Refaeli warned 'Don't marry Leo Di Caprio'

By Jessica Elgot, March 15, 2010

Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli has been urged not to marry her non-Jewish boyfriend Leonardo Di Caprio by a group of strictly Orthodox Jews.

Extreme right-wing activist Baruch Marzel, the head of the Jewish National Front, wrote to Bar Refaeli on behalf of his group Lehava urging her not to “dilute the Jewish race.”

He told the supermodel, who has recently rekindled her romance with American actor Mr DiCaprio: “It is not by chance that you were born Jewish.


Phil Spector to appeal murder conviction

By Jessica Elgot, March 12, 2010

Music producer Phil Spector will appeal against his conviction for the murder of the actress Lana Clarkson, for which he was sentenced to a minimum of 19 years in prison.

Mr Spector, 69, was given 15 years to life for second-degree murder of the actress and cocktail waitress and an additional four for personal use of a gun.

Ms Clarkson, best known for her role in 1985 cult film Barbarian Queen, was found dead from a gunshot wound at Spector's mansion in February 2003.

A retrial took place in Los Angeles in 2005 after a previous jury failed to reach a verdict.


Nude photoshoot planned for Tel Aviv

By Jessica Elgot, March 12, 2010

The controversial Jewish artist Spencer Tunick, whose photographs feature thousands of naked volunteers, hopes to shoot a work in Israel.

The proposal has sparked both excitement and anger among politicians and religious groups.

Mr Tunick has submitted two requests, one to shoot in the Tel Aviv Port and one on the Dead Sea beach.

A spokesman for the Tel Aviv municipality said they were thrilled to be considered by Mr Tunick. He said: "This is a wonderful way of telling the world about Tel Aviv and its modern and vibrant nature."


Lost Boys' Corey Haim dies

By Jessica Elgot, March 10, 2010

The 80s teen heartthrob Corey Haim, the ex-boyfriend of Victoria Beckham, has died aged 38.

Mr Haim, who was born in Toronto, Canada, had an Israeli mother, Judy, and a Canadian-Jewish father Bernie.

Corey found fame in the cult movie The Lost Boys. He would later star in reality TV show The Two Coreys, alongside Lost Boys co-star Corey Feldman, who is also Jewish.

Mr Haim had been open about his battle with prescription drug addiction, including Valium. He was found dead by his mother in his Los Angeles apartment.


The Oscars 2010: winners, and mainly losers

By Tom Tugend, March 8, 2010

If Hollywood is dominated by Jews, it sure let our side down.

The third time was to be the charm for Israel’s entry in the best foreign-language film competition. While the highly touted Ajami made it to the five finalists list, the prize went to Argentina’s El Secreto de sus Ojos (The Secret in Their Eyes).


Sacha Baron Cohen dropped by Oscars

By Jessica Elgot, March 4, 2010

Bruno star Sacha Baron Cohen has had his Oscar skit, in which he parodies Avatar, pulled from the Academy Awards ceremony.

Reports said that the Oscars’ producer Bill Mechanic had refused the go-ahead for the skit, in order to protect the feelings of Avatar director James Cameron.

Mr Baron Cohen, who co-wrote the sketch with fellow Jewish actor and comedian Ben Stiller, was to have dressed up as a female Na’vi, a blue-skinned alien from the Oscar-nominated film.


Bar Refaeli's Israeli tax row resolves

By Jessica Elgot, February 12, 2010

Bar Refaeli has resolved her row with the Israeli tax authority, which refused to allow the supermodel to register as an expat.

Ms Refaeli, the on-off girlfriend of Leonardo DiCaprio, had requested exemption from Israeli tax because she is resident abroad.

She broke up with Mr DiCaprio in June last year, but the pair have been spotted taking a holiday to Italy together earlier this month, fuelling rumours the romance is back on.

The model, who has been the face of campaigns for Victoria’s Secret and Israeli clothing line Fox, has now reached an agreement with the tax authority.