Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 12th 2014 Contents B26
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, May 12, 2014
Jay Leno sees a small silver lining
in the recent collapse of US-backed
Mideast peace talks: It should make
his job just a little easier when he per-
forms in front of Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin Netanyahu later this month.
"I guess any American that s not
John Kerry is more than welcome there
right now," Leno said.
The late night legend is heading to
Israel on May 22 to host the awards
ceremony of the $1 million Genesis
Prize in Jerusalem.
Former New York mayor Michael
Bloomberg is being honoured as the
first recipient of what has been dubbed
"the Jewish Nobel Prize" for his years
of public service and philanthropy.
Netanyahu will headline a list of more
than 400 dignitaries in the audience
that will include business leaders, Nobel
laureates, philanthropists and enter-
tainers. Grammy-winning pianist Evge-
ny Kissin will also perform.
Leno said he will run his jokes by
the "appropriate people" ahead of time
to avoid saying anything inappropriate.
But he said Netanyahu and Bloomberg
who is one of the world s richest men,
can expect to be the target of some of
"I think everybody around the world
appreciates self-deprecating humour,
and I think you can do jokes about the
prime minister, and Michael Bloomberg
getting the award certainly," Leno said
in a telephone interview from Los Ange-
"They re giving him $1 million. Wow.
That s going to change his life."
For Leno, the trip will be his first to
Israel. At a time when pro-Palestinian
activists are urging entertainers to boy-
cott the Jewish state, he said he didn t
have "any problem" with his decision
"It s a great honour. It s a great coun-
try. It s a great people," he said.
While he said he sees both sides of
the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, he said
he considers himself to be "very pro-
Jewish, very pro-Israeli." Leno himself
is not Jewish.
"At some point in your life, you have
to sort of take sides. I tend to side with
the Jewish point of view on many
things, especially issues like this one.
I realise how important Israel is," he
Leno hosted NBC s late-night talk
show The Tonight Show for more than
two decades before retiring in February.
He was replaced by former Saturday
Night Live star Jimmy Fallon.
He said he keeps busy by performing
his standup routine five nights a week
and taking trips that would have been
impossible during his Tonight Show
He recently performed in China and
will make stops in London and Rome
during his upcoming trip to Israel.
Leno said Fallon is doing a "great
"You have to know when to step
down on these jobs," he said. "After a
while, when you re 64 and you re talk-
ing to the 25-year-old supermodel,
you re the creepy guy now. So you have
to know when." (AP)
Spike Lee says his wife per-
suaded him to adapt his 1986
film, She s Gotta Have It, for
"For years, my wife Tonya
(Lewis) kept telling me, That
would make a great TV show, "
Lee said in an interview Thurs-
day night. "Then I went to
Showtime with the first initial
meeting and we sold the idea.
That s not something that hap-
pens every day."
Lee wants to adapt the movie
into a half-hour comedy series.
The original story focused on
a woman s relationship with
three men, exploring the issues
of race, sexuality and gentrifi-
cation in the neighbourhood of
Brooklyn, New York.
The film was a breakthrough
project for Lee, and helped
ignite the independent film
Lee expects to take a con-
temporary look at the characters
and plot for the adaptation. He s
working on the pilot and feels
confident about creating a
Showtime will decide
whether the show gets picked
"I ve always been confident
in my ability, but it s not to be
my decision alone," said the 57-
year-old Lee. "All I can do is
write the best pilot I can write.
Hopefully, God willing, the peo-
ple and powers-to-be at Show-
time can say, We like it Spike,
let s shoot the pilot. "
Lee has also finished the
script and is seeking more
financial backing for the sequel
to his 1988 film, School Daze,
based on life at Atlanta s his-
torically black colleges.
He said he wants to explore
the current issues faced by black
"Anytime I walk the streets,
people say how much they like
to see them (the colleges) again,"
he said. "It ll be very interesting
to revisit Mission College 25
years later. It s different than
what students were dealing with
in 1988 when that film came
out. The world has changed."
Lee wants to adapt 1986 film for TV
Leno to host 'Jewish
Nobel Prize' awards
Inductee Jay Leno speaks on stage at the 2014 Television Academy Hall of Fame
at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills, Calif in March. AP PHOTO
Leno said he will run his
jokes by the "appropriate
people" ahead of time to
avoid saying anything
inappropriate. But he said
Netanyahu and Bloomberg,
who is one of the world's
richest men, can expect to
be the target of some of
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