Celebrity jews

A Jewish swashbuckler

Logan Lerman

“The Three Musketeers” in 3D opens nationwide on Friday, Oct. 21. The oft-filmed story takes place in the 17th century, when hero  D’Artagnan (Logan Lerman, 19) goes to Paris to join the famous guards of the king, the now down-on-their-luck Musketeers.

Lerman’s Hollywood stock is so high now that he didn’t even have to audition for the lead in this big-budget film. He has the tools to become Hollywood’s biggest Jewish big-screen heartthrob since Tony Curtis.

He is very good looking, if not shockingly handsome like Brad Pitt. Plus, he has shown he can act effectively in smaller budget comedy-dramas (like the underappreciated 2009 film “My One and Only”), and he carried an action picture (last year’s box-office hit “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief”).

Lerman’s paternal great-grandfather, a German Jew, and his family fled the Nazis and settled in Shanghai, China just before World War II. There he and his son, Logan’s grandfather, founded an orthotics and prosthetics manufacturing company. They moved to the United States in 1948 and successfully refounded the company in Los Angeles. It is still run by Lerman’s grandfather and father.

Lerman’s paternal grandfather married a European Jewish refugee, and his mother’s father is a postwar Polish Jewish immigrant. His maternal grandmother was born in California, the daughter of Canadian-born Jews. Lerman grew up in Beverly Hills in what he calls a “very stable family.”


‘A Heroic Life’

My sense is that nobody but the French really understand the power and influence within France of the multitalented artist Serge Gainsbourg (1928-1991). To gauge his level of celebrity, I’ve been told to imagine Bob Dylan, Jack Kerouac, Charles Bukowski and Warren Beatty all rolled into one.

“Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life,” which played in the San Francisco International Film Festival in 2010, is slated to open in a handful of Bay Area art theaters on Oct. 28.

The 122-minute film (in French with English subtitles) is directed and written by French comic book artist Joann Sfar, 40, and it’s based on Sfar’s graphic novel about Gainsbourg. It follows Gainsbourg, who was born Lucien Ginzburg, the son of Russian Jewish immigrant parents, as he survives, as a child, the Nazi occupation. After the war, he went from being a painter to a jazz musician to a pop-music superstar.

Professional actors portray Gainsbourg and the many women in his life, including Brigitte Bardot and Jane Birkin, who is the mother of Serge’s famous daughter, actress Charlotte Gainsbourg.


Rogen marries in Sonoma

Lauren Miller

On Oct.1, actor Seth Rogen, 29, wed his longtime girlfriend, filmmaker-writer Lauren Miller, 30, in a Jewish ceremony held in a vineyard in Sonoma. Guests included Adam Sandler, frequent Rogen co-stars Paul Rudd and Jonah Hill and director Judd Apatow. As the date approached, Rogen told the Jewish Journal of Los Angeles that he planned to honor writer-producer Will Reiser at the wedding. Reiser introduced Miller to Rogen.

In September 2010, when the pair’s engagement was made public, I reported that Miller, who went to high school in Lakeland, Fla., created a bit of a stir when she refused to march in the town’s Christmas parade with the rest of her cheerleading squad. Miller later used that incident as the basis of “Happy Holidays,” a short, dramatic film she made in college. It’s about a Jewish girl who feels besieged when her middle-school teacher asks the class to write a letter to Santa Claus.

Nate Bloom

Nate Bloom writes the "Celebrity Jews" column for J.