Celebrity Jews

TV shows, late additions

In my last column, I covered broadcast TV shows that began last month and have a Jewish co-star. Below are HBO and Showtime series; shows starting in October; and three more Jewish actors I learned about.

CBS: I previously noted that “The Crazy Ones,” which began on Sept. 26, co-stars Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar, 36, as a father and daughter who run an ad agency. I also wrote that James Wolk, 28, plays an ad copywriter. Add one more Jewish thespian: the darkly beautiful Amanda Setton, 27 (“Gossip Girl”), who co-stars as an agency assistant. Setton is Syrian Jewish on her father’s side and Ashkenazi on her mother’s side. Her wealthy family supports New York yeshivas. Also, I wrote that “Mom,” which began on Sept. 23, starred Anna Faris as a Napa Valley waitress with a spirited teen daughter. Turns out the daughter’s boyfriend, Luke, is played by Spencer Daniels, 20.


Hannah Ware

ABC: “Betrayal,” which began on Sept. 29, stars Hannah Ware, 30, as a beautiful photographer who is having an extramarital affair with a lawyer for a powerful family. A murder trial further complicates things. Ware, a U.K. native, is the sister of Jessie Ware, 28, a singer-songwriter whose 2012 debut CD was huge in the U.K. Also on ABC is the fantasy/drama “Once Upon a Time in Wonderland,” a spin-off of the hit series “Once Upon a Time.” The spin-off has an “Alice in Wonderland” backstory with Barbara Hershey, 65, as “The Queen of Hearts.” It starts Thursday, Oct. 10.


NBC: “Sean Saves the World,” which started Oct. 2, stars Sean Hayes (“Will and Grace”) as a divorced gay father whose teen daughter moves in with him full time. His mother, who lives with him, is played by Linda Lavin, 75.

HBO: In “Hello Ladies,” which premiered Sept. 29, a gawky English Web designer relocates to Los Angeles and tries to connect with the glamour crowd, including hot women. He makes two close American friends. One, played by Kevin Weisman, 42 (“Alias”), is a charismatic paraplegic who parlays his disability to his advantage in picking up women.

Showtime: “Masters of Sex,” which began Sept. 29, is an episodic biography of Dr. William Masters and Virginia Johnson, the (late) human sexual response researchers. Lizzy Caplan, 31, co-stars as Johnson, who became Masters’ research assistant in 1957 and his wife in 1971. It’s likely that this will be a breakthrough role for Caplan, who has worked steadily in TV and films since 1999.


At the movies


“Parkland,” which opens Friday, Oct. 4, weaves together the stories of several people whose lives were changed in the immediate aftermath of JFK’s assassination, including Abraham Zapruder (1905-1970), the Dallas clothing manufacturer who famously filmed the short movie of the president’s motorcade, including the moment when Kennedy was shot. The film is directed and written by Peter Landesman, 48, a former New York Times journalist making his feature-film debut.


Barry Levinson

The HBO original film “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight” premieres on Saturday, Oct. 5. In 1971, Ali’s long legal battle about his refusal to be drafted, on the grounds that he was a conscientious objector, finally made it to the Supreme Court. The film covers the story of how the justices wrangled with this case. Director Barry Levinson, 71, plays Justice Potter Stewart, with Harris Yulin, 75, as Justice William O. Douglas, and Fritz Weaver, 87, as Justice Hugo Black. A Quaker, Weaver was himself a C.O. during World War II. Perhaps best known for playing a German Jew in the blockbuster 1978 miniseries “Holocaust,” Weaver said a few years ago that World War II was, perhaps, the one war in his lifetime he should have fought in. He added that his wife (since 1997), actress Rochelle Oliver, 76, is Jewish.


Columnist Nate Bloom, an Oaklander, can be reached at [email protected].

Nate Bloom

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