A Busy Fall for Andy Samberg
It’s a busy September for Andy Samberg — he returns for the fourth season of Brooklyn Nine-Nine on FOX September 20, and voices the lead role in the animated movie Storks, opening September 23. The Jewish actor, who’s married to musician Joanna Newsom, says the sitcom’s story picks up a few months after last season’s finale, with his cop character Jake in witness protection in Florida. “He has a new look, a job, and he’s acclimating nicely,” says Samberg.
Storks has the titular birds delivering packages for Cornerstore.com, not babies. But an accidental error saddles Junior, voiced by Samberg, with a bundle of joy that he must deliver before the boss finds out. Samberg is set to reprise his voice role in a third Hotel Transylvania flick, and he shot a mockumentary for HBO tentatively called Tour De Pharmacy, about doping in pro cycling, which will air next year. The all-star cast includes Samberg, Will Forte, Orlando Bloom, Daveed Diggs, Phylicia Rashad, Mike Tyson, Freddie Highmore, John Cena and James Marsden.
Mandy Moore plays a wife and mother for the first time in the new NBC ensemble drama This Is Us, which follows three storylines that intersect in unexpected ways. The actress-singer may get to sing on the show, her portion of which takes place in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s. Moore was raised Catholic, but her mother was Jewish on her father’s side. “My mother was raised mostly Catholic, but they celebrated some Jewish holidays,” she says, adding that she’d like to investigate that part of her heritage “somewhere down the road.”
This Is Us premieres September 20.
Maroon 5’s Adam Levine returns to NBC in a new season of The Voice September 19, alongside Blake Shelton and new coaches Alicia Keys and Miley Cyrus. Levine, who’s Jewish on his father’s side and half-Jewish on his mother’s (her dad was Jewish), is in an interfaith marriage himself with model Behati Prinsloo, who’s due to deliver their first child, a daughter, later this month.
Lily Rabe. Credit: Zitarcis/Wikimedia Commons
Lily Rabe (The Whispers), whose father is Catholic playwright David Rabe and whose mother was actress Jill Clayburgh, herself the daughter of a Jewish father and Protestant mother, plays the title role in Miss Stevens,about a teacher who chaperones three students during a drama competition. It’s in theaters September 16.
Defying the Nazis: The Sharps’ War is a documentary from Ken Burns and Artemis Joukowsky about a Unitarian couple who heroically risked their lives to save Jewish refugees, including hundreds of children, by getting them out of Europe in 1939. The story is told through photos, archival footage, survivor interviews and the Sharps’ personal letters and journals read by Tom Hanks (who’s terrific as a more famous hero, pilot Chesley Sullenberger, in the new movie Sully) and Marina Goldman. It’s a love story too, but one that didn’t end happily. The Sharps eventually divorced and married others. Martha Sharp married Jewish philanthropist David Kogan and worked with Hadassah and other organizations to help resettle Jewish refugees in Palestine.
The documentary airs September 20 on PBS, and a companion book is available now from Beacon Press. The filmmakers also developed an interfaith curriculum in conjunction with it that’s available to schools and religious groups.