Following up my Taki’s column on Larry David, “Curb Your Self-Awareness,” here’s a self-aware excerpt from a 2001 interview by Emma Forrest with Rachel Weisz, the lovely Oscar-winning Jewish-British actress:
EMMA: Well, it’s that Jackie Mason joke about how no Jewish woman wants to look Jewish: “‘You think I look maybe a little Italian, I look a little Russian, perhaps I can be Spanish?’ … ‘You look Jewish!’”
RACHEL: Hollywood’s run by Jews. I was advised by an American agent when I was about 19 to change my surname. And I said “Why? Jews run Hollywood.” He said “Exactly.” He had a theory that all the executives think acting’s a job for shiksas.
EMMA: Of all the self-loathing Jews in the world, the most self-loathing are the Hollywood Jews. They don’t want to see images of themselves on screen. That’s why Lauren Bacall had to hide her identity, and Winona Ryder changed her name from Horowitz.
RACHEL: In some way acting is prostitution, and Hollywood Jews don’t want their own women to participate. Also, there’s an element of Portnoy’s Complaint — they all fancy Aryan blondes.
Comments at Steve Sailer:
* Although there is a tendency for Jews in the US to market themselves as a ‘race’, when you look at British Jews versus US Jews, the British Jews such as Sascha Baron-Cohen (Borat, Ali G) Sid James, Leslie Howard, Lawrence Harvey, Warren Mitchell (the original model for Archie Bunker), Daniel Day Lewis, Anthony Newley seem to have much more in common with their fellow Brits than with US Jews. As did Harold Abrahams, chairman of the Amateur Athletic Association, and the sprinter whose early life story became Chariots of Fire, a movie whose title is drawn from a phrase in Britain’s second national anthem, William Blake’s Jerusalem.
Growing up in the UK I was aware that certain politicians like Clement Freud, Sir Keith Joseph, or Nigel Lawson, father of the even more famous Nigella, or moguls like Robert Maxwell were Jews, but certainly never thought of them being a different race. We would have thought of Maxwell (born Ján Ludvík Hyman Binyamin Hoch) more as a Czech import than as someone who had sympathies with Israel, although after his death there were some claims that he was an agent of Mossad.
So maybe British Jews are more integrated than US Jews, or is it all an illusion?
* Perhaps its because they arent nearly as powerful as US Jews so they behave a bit better.
* “RACHEL: Hollywood’s run by Jews.” She said this in 2001 and as far as I know, she wasn’t condemned for saying it.
But the ADL said this about Gary Oldman making the same observation in 2014: “[Oldman’s] withering remark that Hollywood ‘is a town that’s run by Jews,’ was nothing less than stomach-churning anti-Semitism.”
Maybe MS Weisz’s remark was overlooked because it was in a relatively little-known publication, whereas Oldman’s was in a Playboy interview, or maybe the fact that Oldman isn’t Jewish and MS Weisz is Jewish is a factor, or etc.
* EMMA: Well, it’s that Jackie Mason joke about how no Jewish woman wants to look Jewish: “‘You think I look maybe a little Italian, I look a little Russian, perhaps I can be Spanish?’ … ‘You look Jewish!’”
Geekettes of any community generally aren’t lookers. Most ethnic and racial groups don’t produce a lot of smart intellectual women. So, we don’t associate most communities with geekettes.
But Jewish community produced lots of geekettes, and most of them aint pretty, and so, the when people think ‘Jewish woman’, they think of someone like Betty Friedan.
But Susan Sontag was beautiful.
Another thing. Women of most communities knew their place. If they didn’t have the looks or charms, they didn’t dare to put themselves forth as Star Material. They gave up their ambitions.
But Jews had chutzpah. So, even those without looks put themselves forth as star material, and Barbra Streisand was a classic case. A good singer but no looker. But she was gonna make herself a star and even sex symbol. If looks couldn’t do it, it was comedy and antics. It worked in FUNNY GIRL.
And Bob Dylan couldn’t sing in the conventional sense. But that didn’t faze him none. He was gonna be a rock star when most people would have laughed at the notion. He combined wit and personality and vision. It worked for him.
At least Streisand had genuine talent as comedienne and Dylan was a great composer and fascinating personality.
But sometimes, we get second-raters like Amy Schumer. The chutzpah is there but no talent to compensate for deficiencies in other departments. And with Jewish royalty in Hollywood and power of legacy, we’ve been getting more of these second-rate Jews in entertainment recently. No hunger, just a sense of entitlement. But chutzpah loses its punch and vulgar nobility without struggle. People rooted for Streisand as the underdog who would be princess. But Schumer never had to pay any dues. She feels entitled to be a star, but with what?
Of all the self-loathing Jews in the world, the most self-loathing are the Hollywood Jews. They don’t want to see images of themselves on screen. That’s why Lauren Bacall had to hide her identity, and Winona Ryder changed her name from Horowitz.
I don’t really buy this. It was common for any number of ethnic groups to Anglo-ize their names in the 2oth century. Not only Jews did this.
Also, movie stars wanted glamorous names. Also, she didn’t just change her Jewish name but very gentile-sounding names as well. Betty Joan Perske. She lost the Betty and Joan along with Perske.
In some cases, name change just made good common sense, as with Rudolph Valentino whose full name was Rodolfo Alfonso Raffaello Pierre Filibert Guglielmi di Valentina d’Antonguella .
Also, even Anglos and gentiles changed their names.
Marion Morrison became John Wayne.
Archibald Alec Leach became Cary Grant.
Lucille Fay LeSueur became Joan Crawford.
Norma Jeane Mortenson became Marilyn Monroe.
And so on.
It was just part of the Hollywood game of not only playing mythic characters but reinventing yourself.
It’s like how Jimmy Gatz became Jay Gatsby… with people still arguing whether he’s supposed to be Jewish or not.
Also, Winona Ryder was NOT hiding her identity. I mean it’s NO handicap to be Jewish in America. If anything, it’s a plus. She got rid of ‘horowitz’ because it’s not Star-name.
Plenty of people knew she was Jewish, and it never threatened her popularity.
I think Emma and Rachel are over-analyzing this. Their views may have been more relevant in earlier decades but not in the 90s and 2000s.
And there has never been a shortage of Jewish actors and actresses. Paul Muni, John Garfield, Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Hoffman, Hackman, Peter Sellers, Allen, Brooks, Wilders, Dreyfus, Clayburgh, etc.
It’s news to me that Jewish bosses tried to prevent Jews from being actors.
Also, there’s an element of Portnoy’s Complaint — they all fancy Aryan blondes.
If this is true, where are they? How many blonde superstar actresses had we had in the past 30 yrs?
Even in the golden age of Hollywood, most female stars were brunettes, not blondes.
Marilyn Monroe was the most famous blonde, and she was a dummy and a joke.
This notion of Jewish women still taking a backseat to Nazi Aryan goddesses is not supported by reality… any more than the notion that Aryan jocks rule Harvard while Jews are underdogs.
* How many blonde superstar actresses had we had in the past 30 yrs?
Meryl Streep, Kim Basinger, Jennifer Lawrence, Cate Blanchett, Reese Witherspoon, Charlize Theron, Jessica Lange, Jodie Foster, Helen Hunt, Renee Zellweger…
…and those are just the ones who have won Oscars…
…blonde female nominees include Naomi Watts, Glenn Close, Laura Linney, Felicity Huffman, Elisabeth Shue, Sharon Stone, Michelle Pfieffer, Laura Dern, Melanie Griffith, Uma Thurman, Rachel McAdams, Virginia Madsen, Kate Hudson…
…BTW, Oscar winner Gwyneth Paltrow isn’t a natural blonde, but one-time nominee Winona Ryder is.
* Here’s a party at Roland Emmerich’s house (a few years old). It apparently had to do with ‘pride’.
https://img.buzzfeed.com/buzzfeed-static/static/2014-04/campaign_images/webdr08/18/18/heres-bryan-singer-dressed-as-a-priest-with-three-2-347-1397861831-0_dblbig.jpgOh look, it’s Gandalf
* Sarah Silverman said something similar, I believe along the lines of: “The Jews who run Hollywood think acting is not a career for good Jewish girls, it’s for those trashy Shiksas.”
Might be true, but that might be rationalization. It might also be that the Jewish men in Hollywood find shiksas way more attractive and think that Jewish girls don’t have the looks to draw, and want to be polite to Jewish girls about it.
Winona Ryder changed her name for the same reason most performers change their name: they want a name that sells, not one that necessarily excludes or makes them typecast as “ethnic.” Bob Hope changed his name to have broader appeal, and he wasn’t Jewish.
* British Jews and American Jews both assimilated, but in different contexts. British Jews assimilated into a demographically overwhelming, self-confident “founding stock”. So, in school, little Benjamin lined up with little Nigel, little Edmund, little Winston, etc.
American Jews assimilated into a context where the founding stock was, locally, in demographic retreat. There weren’t a lot of “founding stock Americans” around in the big immigrant cities. So little Benjamin lined up with little Tony the Italian kid, little PJ the Irish kid, little Stan the Polish kid, etc. Ellis Island America was a composite of more-or-less harmonious tribes, who reciprocally influenced each other against the background of inherited Anglo-American culture.
* Watching the news last night i observed out loud (as others apparently did) that scoldings about sexual harassment disseminated by ugly people of indeterminate gender are hilarious.