jones and murray looks perplexed as they sit in the front seat of a small old red convertible
Rashida Jones and Bill Murray star in "On The Rocks."

Disney Channel does Rosh Hashanah; Abbie Hoffman on Netflix; Rashida Jones costars with Bill Murray; etc.

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Hey kids, it’s the new year

A roster of young Disney Channel stars came together to talk about just what’s the deal with that holiday called Rosh Hashanah, in a recent video aimed for young fans. Channel hosts Ariel Martin and Trevor Tordjman and young actors fielded questions about tashlich, the shofar and just how to wish someone “Shana Tovah.”


Yes, this show is Jewish

In what might win “title of the year” if there were such an award, the CW network has greenlit a show called “I’m in Love with the Dancer from My Bat Mitzvah.” It’ll be executive-produced by Rachel Bloom of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” The show was created by Ilana Wolpert and apparently is based on a true story of a strange, comic obsession.


Revisionist fables

Natalie Portman is rewriting, well, not history, but something almost as untouchable — classic children’s stories. In a book coming out in October, she’s put a twist on three tales, including “The Three Little Pigs,” to make them more gender balanced (which, in this case, means not making it all about boy pigs). The actor-filmmaker said she valued the morals in fables but wanted to make sure “we’re not telling any of our children that boys’ inner lives are more valuable to imagine than those of girls.” Her other retellings are “The Tortoise and the Hare” and “Country Mouse and City Mouse.”


Hoffman rises

The Aaron Sorkin-penned and Sacha Baron Cohen-starring film “The Trial of the Chicago 7” is coming to Netflix. Baron Cohen stars as the theatrical firebrand Abbie Hoffman, who was tried along with six others for conspiracy and incitement to riot at the Democratic National Convention in 1968. The casting was a natural fit, Baron Cohen said in an interview with Vanity Fair. “We both have that element of Jewish chutzpah,” he said.


Jones steps up

Rashida Jones, 44, joins Bill Murray, 70, in writer-director Sophia Coppola’s newest, “On the Rocks,” coming to Apple TV+ on Oct. 23 following a limited theatrical release. She plays Murray’s daughter, a woman who turns to her devil-may-care father for help when her life seems to be falling apart. Jones, the daughter of Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton, said being part of a multiracial family in the movie was important. “Because my family is so blended, I wanted it to feel like my family and also I’m aware of the fact that representation is important,” she said in an L.A. Times interview.


A new twist

Actor Adam Shapiro has an unexpected new job: pretzel mogul. The Philadelphia native always missed his hometown’s soft pretzels, and stuck in quarantine in Los Angeles, he began baking them as a way to stay sane. When his wife and fellow actor Katie Lowes talked about them on TV, he got so many emails wanting pretzels that he decided to make it a business. Now, Shappy Pretzels is a viral hit with a roster of Hollywood fans and is selling almost 1,000 per day.

Maya Mirsky
Maya Mirsky

Maya Mirsky is a J. Staff Writer based in Oakland.