Monday, July 28, 2014 Av 1, 5774

Michael Elkin

Features Editor
Call him what you will, but don't call him late for 'Dinner'
"Dinner for Schmucks"? "Oh, a film about the family hour," reacts a Jewish captain of industry who gets stripped of his stripes and decommissioned/degraded to private parts as soon as he steps over the threshold of his home. There's nothing Jewish about "Dinner for Schmucks," opening July 30, except the title -- but it is a title that has produced...
"Scene" found a surreal sense of relief in listening to the "Mad Mel Tapes." Blacks, women, gays ... Thank God. And here, "Scene" thought it was just Jews. Misery loves company and now, it seems, Jews have plenty of it when it comes to the Road Warrior's war against humanity. Who knew that Braveheart was really Chicken Little? That Mel's...
Maybe he who lives in Gibson houses shouldn't throw Stones? That may be the lesson to be learned from the recent behavior of "Scene's" favorite revisionist filmmaker, Oliver Stone, whose comments in an interview in the Sunday Times of London shows that anti-Semitism has a platoon all its own in Hollywood. Stone, out promoting -- with frenzies like this, who...
Was this lawyer from Langhorne the one that got away?
Did top-notch personal-injury attorney Craig Robinson take it as a personal insult when he was left with the thorns and not the rose on "The Bachelorette"? Absolutely not, he avows. "I didn't take it personally." Personable and appealing, the Philadelphia-based, Langhorne-raised Robinson got his verdict just weeks ago, as ABC's water-cooler cool show now gets set to finalize it all...
Cherry Hill's Aaron Lazar adds to his Broadway bounty with Feinstein's premiere
Barricades do come down for Aaron Lazar, star of the 2006 revival of "Les Misérables" and the most happy fella -- well, he hasn't done that show yet -- to come out of Cherry Hill, N.J., chomping at taking the reigns of Broadway. Of course, there was the reign of terror that he was involved in two years ago, but...


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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