Tuesday, September 16, 2014 Elul 21, 5774

Michael Elkin

Features Editor
How does the muddled Mideast play out in Middle America? So much depends on perspectives presented by the Top 3 TV news anchors on a nightly basis. And the networks themselves are trying to clear up their own muddied picture of who's on first -- or at least, who deserves to get your attention first and foremost. Their own TV...
Jeffrey Ross pledges comedy in 'Patriot Act'
Don't flag Jeffrey Ross for his red- white-and-blue humor; the guy's a veritable weapon of mirth destruction, disarming the unaware while armed for mirthful combat. Ross regales with an arsenal of quips, quotes and clever put-downs that have made him the chicken dish of choice for many a Friars Club celebrity roast. He is a J.R. you wouldn't turn your...
'Only Human' is a Spanish-Jewish jambalaya
In loco parentis? Forget the parents; this whole family is loco. "Only Human" is a "Meet the Fockers" over frittatas, a loopey Lope de Vega novel in which the inquisition comes down to this: "Mommele, Poppele, meet my fiance, the Palestinian." Opening Friday at Ritz theaters, "Only Human" is only one of the funniest comedies of the year, a Spanish-Jewish...
Driving Miss Guided? "Who Killed the Electric Car?" is a gas. But who knew that this movie murder mystery with moxie could mischievously produce such road rage and fuming fans? Which is exactly what has happened since "Car" opened, creating a current concern over how the gas guzzlers -- those in the oil industry -- have given the shaft to...
phraim 'Elliott' Yamin has his own story to tell
Knight of the nice guys, Elliott Yamin is being kept busy this summer having "Idol" time on his hands. Nice guys don't necessarily finish last; maybe third. And, in Yamin's case, missing the finals -- and the king's throne -- didn't mean being out of the money or being kept from the roundtable's riches. A third-place finish? He's just beginning...


Michael Elkin has worked as the Exponent Arts & Entertainment and Features editors for some 40 years.

He has won some 40 national and regional writing awards over his career as well as three fellowships in playwriting and screenwriting from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

His arts articles — including working as a jazz critic for the Evening and Sunday Bulletin; book reviewer for the Philadelphia Inquirer; and rock reviewer/TV writer for the Camden Courier-Post  — and op-eds have appeared throughout North America; his plays have been staged internationally, including runs in Romania — one play running for  five years —  Israel, Germany, Los Angeles and, locally, the Walnut Street Theatre and People's Light and Theatre Company. He is a  Tony Award voter and is a member of a national new play selection committee handing out an annual award to an  up-and-coming playwright.

He worked as a mentor with the Philadelphia Young Playwrights' outreach program to area high schools and at one point headed up the playwriting program at the Walnut Street Theatre School.  His play "Cries in the Night" was cited in the book "The Best Plays of 1992-93," in the "New Plays From Around the Country" category. His travel articles have appeared nationally and he has worked as a travel editor for Fodor's Travel Guides.

As a screenwriter, he  was asked by filmmaker John Frankenheimer ("Birdman of Alcatraz," "The Manchurian Candidate"), with whom he then worked,  to write a script for Frankenheimer to direct.

He has moderated and taken part in national conferences both here and in New York on topics ranging from hip-hop/rap to theater to comedy and has served as a board member of film and theater arts groups.

Elkin has appeared on area TV and radio shows and served as arts critic for the cable program "Our Town." He has been cited in reference books for his investigative work on TV as an influential social medium. For his expertise in film and theater, Elkin was asked to — and did — serve as on-screen interviewer of actor Richard Dreyfuss in a documentary about the American Music Theater Festival, with which Dreyfuss was involved.

A graduate of Temple University — he also studied screenwriting at New York University and attended the University of Houston Bates School of Law — Elkin was honored to be Temple's commencement speaker in the mid-90s. He also taught journalism at Temple as well as screenwriting at La Salle University.



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