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2013-02-12 digital edition
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The Jewish Press of Tampa and the Jewish Press of Pinellas County are Independently- owned biweekly Jewish community newspapers published in cooperation with and supported by the Tampa JCC & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties, respectively. Copyright © 2009-2019 The Jewish Press Group of Tampa Bay, Inc., All Rights Reserved. 


February 12, 2013  RSS feed
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6 degrees no Bacon

Rabbi on the ‘Shark Tank’

Moshe Weiss, a Minnestoa rabbi, dropped by ABC’s reality show Shark Tank recently to make a pitch for his business venture, replete with plenty of “oy veys” and the playing of “Hava Nagila.”

Weiss, a father of three from St. Paul, described his job as requiring a lot of faith – a virtue he likes to apply to his business. Weiss is the inventor of the Sound Bender, a magnetic, power-free amplifier that attaches magnetically to the iPad to enhance its sound.

The playing of “Hava Nagila” was to show the panel the Sound Bender’s capabilities. The sharks mostly laughed at Weiss, noting that he had “chutzpah,” but also voicing skepticism about the product.

Still, FuBu CEO Daymond John granted the $54,000 requested by the rabbi in exchange for 40 percent of his company’s shares.

Rabbi Moshe Weiss pitches his invention. Rabbi Moshe Weiss pitches his invention. Abrams’ twofer: ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Star Trek’ sequels

The dispute between Star Trek and Star Wars fans about which is superior may be over, since J.J. Abrams is set to direct both.

According to Deadline, the man behind the hit ABC series Lost is going to direct the new Star Wars Episode VII. The website cites sources with “knowledge of the situation” who claim it’s a “done deal.”

The idea behind creating the seventh movie in the series began after Disney bought George Lucas’ Lucasfilm last October for $4 billion. Abrams’ other space saga, Star Trek, will hit the big screen in May with the sequel Star Trek Into Darkness.

J.J. Abrams J.J. Abrams According to Disney, Episode VII is aiming for a 2015 release and already has Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3) in charge of the script. Based on Abrams’ previous work, Star Wars Episode VII also should include Khan, the smoke monster and that weird lizard thing from the movie Cloverfield.

For Matisyahu, no beard, no entry

Since Matisyahu shaved his beard last year, the former Chasidic reggae musician has been suffering all sorts of blowback. Along with losing his facial hair, sidelocks and the love of some Jewish fans, apparently he’s lost his VIP status in the eyes of club bouncers, too.

Max Greenfield, then and now Max Greenfield, then and now At the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, UT, recently, Matisyahu stood outside the TAO nightclub for some 10 minutes unable to get in because the door managers had no idea who he was, according to the New York Post. He finally gained access to the club from a friend who recognized him. Had he shown up in the black hat and coat, and straggly white beard he once wore, the bouncers surely would have dug his outfit and ushered him in.

(You can see the beardless Matisyahu in concert Feb. 23 in Tampa.)

Franco loves his bubbe

Actor-turned-everything-else James Franco, who is starring in the upcoming film Oz: The Great and Powerful, landed a role for his grandmother, Mitzie Verne, in the movie set to come out in March. Franco was granted permission from his producers for his bubbe to make a special appearance at the end of the film, which is about the events leading up to the still popular 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz.

“James is very family orientated,” a source told the Daily Mail. “He is very close to his grandma and managed to get her a role in the Oz film. She played a townsperson in the end.”

Greenfield’s ‘SNL’ bar mitzvah

Max Greenfield, the stud who plays Schmidt on FOX’s The New Girl, sat down with Jimmy Fallon to talk about his Emmy nomination and his bar mitzvah, which had a Saturday Night Live theme.

He also showed the audience some photos from the bar mitzvah. Greenfield was an adorable 13-year-old in his braces, yarmulke and tallit.

Sarah Silverman will Skype with you

Want Jewish comedian Sarah Silverman as a digital pen pal? Of course you do.

Just donate $5,000 to the Jerusalem-based solar energy company Energiya Global, which is run by her brother-in-law, Yossi “Kaptain Sunshine” Abramowitz. An active supporter of green energy, Abramowitz has initiated projects all around the world. His latest involves turning a landfill on San Cristobal Island into a 300-kilowatt, 1,200-panel solar field, since the Galapagos Islands currently gets power from diesel fuel that results in pollution.

Abramowitz is looking for $250,000 in donations, and is not ashamed to use his famed sister-in-law to help him get there, Green Prophet reports. Silverman has pledged to send signed autographs to the first 50 people who send $75 in donations. A lucky donor will get to Skype with Silverman for a $5,000 pledge.

Barrymore raising child Jewish

Drew Barrymore stopped by to discuss marriage and motherhood with the women of The View recently.

Barrymore, who married art dealer Will Kopelman (son of Chanel CEO Arie Kopelman) seven months ago in a traditional Jewish wedding, talked about being married to a “nice Jewish man” from a “nice Jewish family.” While saying she hasn’t converted “yet,” Barrymore did reveal that she and her husband are planning to raise their baby daughter, Olive, “traditionally Jewish.”

She also talked about her wedding. “We had a very traditional wedding ceremony with Rabbi Rubinstein, and I did the ketubah, and we wore the yarmulke and were under the chuppah!” Barrymore said.

For more Jewish entertainment news, visit, the illegitimate child of JTA.

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