Sunday, September 25, 2016 Elul 22, 5776

Michael Elkin

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Archie's a bit of a jughead. Disabled and devilish, he's the one character in "13" who sums up everything about what it means to be mean and green -- and sweet -- at that age, using his disability as a crutch while clutching on to whatever hope is allowed him in Indiana, where the Indie 500 could be the name...
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Right on? The left gets smacked about a bit in "An American Carol" -- Shirley, you remember its director/producer/co-writer David Zucker from "Airplane!" and the bump of brash, broad comedies that followed -- with none other than Bill O'Reilly providing the spin factor: He slaps a Michael Moore stand-in (a character named Michael Malone, portrayed by Kevin Farley) so hard,...
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Bryn Mawr beauty rocks and reels in the roles, the latest of which premieres this weekend
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Ignore "Nick and Norah" at your own risk; the thin teen and the voluptuous vixen are involved in life's little mysteries that would have had William Powell and Myrna Loy detecting a similarity to their own clandestine coups. William Powell? Myrna Loy? Put that on your playlist and see where it gets you. These days, it's getting Michael Cera and...
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Is there a tone for his sins? Sardonic ... disputatious ... dismissive. Just don't expect it to sound like Kol Nidre. Cole Porter, maybe: After all, Bill Maher has always been bewitched, bothered and bewildered by the role religion has played roiling the unholy waters of society. But to make a feature-length documentary about it? Don't be ... "Religulous." Oh,...
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Farewell, Toby -- or is it, Shalom, Toby!
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Got Staples? Yeah, we got that. Makes sense; after all, how can ya run "The Office" without staples? Never thought of that, muses Paul Lieberstein, a graduate of Staples High School in Westport, Conn., who portrays the hit NBC series' outgoing human resources staple, Toby Flenderson -- the brooding bobblehead of benign neglect who deals with all the dunderheads of...
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Profile

Michael Elkin worked for the Jewish Exponent for over 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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