When Rick Schwartz left his job last February as vice president of production for Miramax Films, the epitome of cutting-edge film production, friends and colleagues questioned his decision, if not his sanity. Why would Schwartz, a soft-spoken fellow in his mid-30s who grew up in a Modern Orthodox home in Teaneck, N.J., and now sends his young children to a Jewish day school in Englewood, want to walk away from the company founded and headed by the Weinstein brothers, Harvey and Bob?
Though her music has long been part of worship services at Reform synagogues and she has been embraced by camp song leaders, Debbie Friedman has often felt disdained by many of the movement’s more “serious” music mavens, like the cantors.
When the now legendary film director Martin Scorsese first discovered Herbert Asbury’s book “Gangs of New York” in 1970, and decided to make it into a film, Rick Schwartz was a 2-year-old growing up in a Modern Orthodox home in Teaneck, N.J.
It took three decades for Scorsese to complete his dream — the much-anticipated epic film opens this weekend — and it was helped along by hundreds of people.
Tony Kushner says his Jewish identity helped him in his struggle to “come out” as a gay man. Wendy Wasserstein says the play she most wants to write is about her mother, who “met a socialist at Ratners” and, nine years later, after he died, married his brother.