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Hollywood Now: Michael Douglas, Justin Kirk, Evan Rachel Wood and more

Hangover for Geezers”

Call it The Hangover for geezers—but the geezers just happen to be a quartet of Oscar winners. The Sin City destination and the bachelor party motivation are the same, but the comedy Last Vegas, opening November 1, stars Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline as four senior buddies out for a fun fling before Douglas’ perennial bachelor character ties the knot.

Las Vegas
Las Vegas Oscar-winning cast. Credit: CBS Films

As most people are aware, Douglas, who won an Emmy for his portrayal of Liberace in Behind the Candelabra, is the son of Jewish screen legend Kirk Douglas. His Anglican mother Diana Dill, born in Bermuda, has English, Scottish, Welsh, French, Belgian and Dutch ancestry. Douglas followed his parents’ example with his own interfaith marriage to actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, with whom he has two children. They announced their trial separation earlier this year.

Fall Fix

Last Love
Justin Kirk and Clemence Poesy. Credit: RLJ/Image Entertainment

Justin Kirk could at least relate partially to the character he played on Weeds, Andy Botwin: Like Botwin, Kirk is Jewish—his mother has Russian-Jewish roots; his father has Danish and English ancestry. Also known for Angels in America and recently, a recurring role on Modern Family, Kirk stars with Michael Caine and Clemence Poesy in the new film Last Love, opening in limited release November 1. The Paris-set drama stars Caine as a widowed, sad professor who strikes up a life-changing friendship with a young dancer (Poesy). Kirk plays Caine’s estranged son.

Gad Elmaleh is pretty much unknown in America, but he’s huge star in France, where the Moroccan-Jewish actor and comedian is a household name. He’s even more famous now that he’s expecting a baby with Charlotte Casiraghi, daughter of Princess Caroline and granddaughter of Princess Grace of Monaco, a.k.a. Grace Kelly. Rumor had it they’re engaged, but they’ve denied any marriage plans of late. Could religion be a nuptial obstacle for the Catholic royal family?

Meanwhile, Elmaleh, who had a bit part in Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, is front and center in the French-English thriller Capital, writer-director Costa-Gavras’ darkly comic drama set in the world of global finance. He plays a ruthlessly ambitious executive fighting a hostile takeover by an American hedge fund (led by Gabriel Byrne) and tempted by a supermodel (Liya Kebede) in the film, which opens October 25 in New York, November 1 in Los Angeles, and more cities to follow. Elmaleh will next star in Michel Gondry’s romance Mood Indigo, opposite Audrey Tatou.

A Case of You
Evan Rachel Wood and Justin Long. Credit: IFC Films

Oliver Jackson-Cohen & Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Credit: Jonathon Hession/NBC

Evan Rachel Wood, the daughter of a Christian father and a mother who converted to Judaism, indentifies as Jewish though she considers herself more spiritual than religious. A year ago, she married British actor Jamie Bell, and she gave birth to their son in July. Wood, whose credits includeThirteen, The Wrestler, Mildred Pierce and True Blood, stars in A Case of You with Justin Long, who co-wrote the romantic comedy about a writer who creates an online alter ego to woo his dream girl. Also starring Peter Dinklage, Brendan Fraser, Vince Vaughn, Busy Phillipps, Sam Rockwell and Sienna Miller, it opens in limited release and Video on Demand November 8.

NBC’s new series Dracula, starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers in the title role, co-stars Oliver Jackson-Cohen as social climbing journalist Jonathan Harker, and as his surname hints, he has mixed roots. The British actor has one Jewish parent: His father is French-Israeli. American audiences have seen him in the films Faster and Going the Distance and on TV in Mr. Selfridge and World Without End. Dracula premieres October 25.

Gerri Miller

Gerri Miller wrote and reported from Los Angeles about celebrities, entertainment and lifestyle for The Jewish Journal, The Nosher, Hadassah and others. A New York native, she spent a summer working at Kibbutz Giv’at Brenner in Israel and attended High Holy Day services at the Laugh Factory in West Hollywood every year.


Author: Gerri Miller