Israeli pop star Noa Kirel at the MTV European Music Awards in Seville, Nov. 3, 2019. (Photo/JTA-Europa Press Entertainment-Europa Press via Getty Images)
Israeli pop star Noa Kirel at the MTV European Music Awards in Seville, Nov. 3, 2019. (Photo/JTA-Europa Press Entertainment-Europa Press via Getty Images)

Drake-scented candles; Israeli pop star Noa Kirel looks to US; Andy Samberg defends Oscar diversity requirements; etc.

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Israel on top

Rhythmic gymnastics champ Linoy Ashram, 21, has added another medal to her collection — the Israeli athlete just won the top prize at the European Championships. Of Greek and Yemeni background, she’s out to show the world she’s a fighter. “Everyone usually thinks that the successful gymnasts are Eastern European,” she said in a video before the Olympics (which have been postponed). “I wanted to prove it didn’t have to be that way.”


Smells like celebrities

Following Gwyneth Paltrow into the world of celebrity candles that smell like … celebrities (yes, you read that right) is Drake. The singer and rapper recently launched a line of scented candles, and the most expensive one apparently “smells just like Drake.” Its “smooth musk fragrance” mimics the perfume he likes to wear. At prices up to $80, you’re probably not going to want to light these for Hanukkah.


Kirel plans world domination

Israeli pop star Noa Kirel is looking to break into the American market. The 19-year-old singer and actress, known for her chart-topping hits, has signed with a U.S. agency to build her brand here after signing a massive deal with Atlantic Records earlier this year. That’s happening concurrently with her military service back in Israel, which the teen is still doing in spite of interference from paparazzi and fans.


Calm down, white people

In an interview about his recent film “Palm Springs,” comedian Andy Samberg also had some tough words for people who oppose the new diversity requirements that films need to meet in order to be considered for a “best picture” Oscar starting in 2024. “You can have the ‘whitest’ cast in the history of cinema and still very easily meet [the requirements] by just doing a few key roles behind the camera,” he told Variety. “People who have problems with it can f– off.”


She reminds me of someone

Odeya Rush
Odeya Rush

Odeya Rush, a 23-year-old Israeli American actress, is having a breakout moment. She’s been acting since she was a child, but she won praise for her role in “Ladybird” in 2017 and has just co-starred in “Let it Snow,” a Netflix Christmas movie. But Rush is also getting social media attention for her resemblance to another Jewish actress, Mila Kunis.


Never change, Goldie

In a joint New York Times interview with her husband, Kurt Russell, Goldie Hawn talks about their new Christmas movie in which they play “Mr. and Mrs. Claus.” But she also reveals the reason her family stopped lighting Hanukkah candles. “I was on the phone once, and I backed up to the Hanukkah candles. You know the wall phones back in the day? I had wrapped myself in the cord, and I caught on fire. I literally burned my robe and my back. It’s like, Baruch atah…My mom came, and they unraveled me and, thank God, I’m fine,” Hawn said.

Maya Mirsky
Maya Mirsky

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