Tuesday, September 2, 2014 Elul 7, 5774

Michael Elkin

Features Editor
Well, rock my world: VH1 is presenting "So Jewtastic" as part of its "All Access Presents." Oy! Nah. Make that Yo! Because it's all a topsy-turvy world, isn't it? Madonna as Esther, Adam Goldberg, "The Hebrew Hammer" … Suddenly, hip-hop has become hopped-up Yiddishkeit? Bling it on! And that's what happens in "So Jewtastic," being shown by the cable network...
What makes Christmas Carol kosher? Is it the fact that she doesn't mix milk and meat in her mince pies while putting up the tree? "Exactly," says Peter Gordon with a laugh. Wrong answer; right expert opinion. Gordon should know - as should colleague Michael Lange, both of whom make up the silliest music possible. But that's their bizarre -...
Comic/actor shows 'em the money on new quiz show
Ratings grabber? Howie Mandel on the case: And that's the case in point. What it is, says the normally manic, always-moving comic of his latest project, is a quiz show in which contestants pick metallic case after case filled with any amount from a penny to the plentitudes that a million bucks represents, hoping to eliminate all but the biggest...
Movie Mania
Steven Spielberg is as secretive about "Munich" as if he were a Mossad agent. He isn't, of course. But what he is is the world's most famous producer/director whose movie of "Munich," due to open nationally Dec. 23, has already topped many an Oscar contender list - before any critics had even seen it. Such is the E.T. - extra-talented...
'Paradise' … Regained? Palestinian's film about suicide bombings targets their futility
The 70 virgins aren't the only ones having a go at it for the first time in "Paradise Now," the controversial and craftily compelling new film about suicide bombers by Hany Abu-Assad. The Palestinian director/co-writer has made what is conceivably the first feature featuring a suicide bomber's point of view; it is a film as explosive in debate circles as...


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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