Celebrity Jews: Selma Blair, Movies, TV & Life Cycle
Selma Blair Goes Public
Actress Selma Blair, 46, disclosed on Oct. 13 that she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (“MS”) last August. She shared the news via a video posting on Instagram (google “Blair” and “Hollywood Reporter” for video/text). MS, which affects more women than men, usually is diagnosed between ages 20 and 50. It disables the central nervous system by disrupting the flow of information between the brain and body. Progression and symptoms vary widely from person-to-person.
Blair described her symptoms: “I am disabled. I fall sometimes. I drop things. My memory is foggy. And my left side is asking for directions from a broken GPS. But we are doing it. And I laugh and I don’t know exactly what I will do precisely but I will do my best.” However, these symptoms have not stopped Blair from filming her new Netflix sci-fi series, Another Life, in which she co-stars as a reporter.
Blair thanked a number of friends for support, including Sarah Michelle Gellar, 41, and Elizabeth Berkley, 47. Gellar co-starred with Blair in the hit film Cruel Intentions (1999) and Berkley, like Blair, attended Cranbrook in Bloomfield Hills (Blair, a Southfield native, attended Hillel Day School in Farmington Hills before Cranbrook. Berkley is from Farmington Hills).
Blair also thanked Berkley for insisting she see her brother, Dr. Jason Berkley, 45, a neurologist affiliated with Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. After an MRI, he was able to diagnose her. Dr. Berkley did a fellowship at Henry Ford Hospital.
MORE TV/STREAMING CATCH-UP AND PREMIERES
Now streaming on Netflix is the 30-minute documentary Long Shot. It tells the true, but unlikely, story of how evidence was found that validated the alibi of an innocent man accused of murder. Without spoiling things, let me just say that comedian Larry David, 71, improbably had a hand in this. David is charming and funny in his interview segments.
Wanderlust is a steamy six-episode BBC series that began streaming on Netflix on Oct. 19. Joy, a therapist (Toni Collette) and Alan, a teacher, find that their marriage is in a rut, sexually and otherwise, and consider openly seeing other people. Brit actress Sophie Okonedo, 50, plays Angela, Joy’s therapist. Okonedo, who was Oscar-nominated for her performance in Hotel Rwanda (2004), was raised Jewish by her white, Jewish mother. Her father is Nigerian. She told a Brit TV station: “I feel as proud to be Jewish as I feel to be black.”
Tell Me a Story began streaming on CBS All-Access on Oct. 31. The publicity release says: “Set in modern day New York … the world’s most beloved fairy tales are re-imagined as a dark and twisted psychological thriller.” The handsome James Wolk (Mad Men), 33, is a series regular. Wolk is a Farmington Hills native.
Homecoming, based on a well-received fictional podcast of the same name, starts on Nov. 2 on Netflix. Heidi Bergman (Julia Roberts) is a caseworker assigned to a young veteran at a secret government facility. Alex Karpovsky (Girls), 43, a series regular, plays Craig, another employee at the facility.
LIFE CYCLE EVENTS
Joshua Kushner, 33, the brother of White House adviser Jared Kushner, 37, wed supermodel Karlie Kloss, 26, on Oct. 18. Before the wedding, Kloss converted to Judaism under Orthodox auspices. The JTA reports Kloss openly supported Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election and also attended the Women’s March after Trump’s inauguration — with her fiancé. “Josh and I share a lot of the same liberal values that guide our lives and the things we stand for,” Kloss told Vogue last month.
Amy Schumer, 37, announced on Oct. 22 that she and her husband, Chris Fischer, are expecting their first child. She disclosed her pregnancy at the end of an Instagram story by Jessica Yellin, 45, about Schumer’s work to elect Democrats in the midterm elections.