”Fiddler‘s Journey to the Big Screen” with Daniel Raim


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When “Fiddler on the Roof” opened on Broadway in 1964, many thought that this Yiddish-inspired portrait of Jewish shtetl life in Tsarist Russia would be a huge flop. But audiences flocked to the musical, and its songbook soon entered the popular lexicon. Hollywood set its sights on a film version and United Artists signed the well-respected, but hardly household name, Norman Jewison to direct. The fascinating behind-the-scenes story of what happened next is the subject of Oscar-nominated director Daniel Raim’s (“The Man on Lincoln’s Nose”) delightful new documentary “Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen”, which has its world premiere at the upcoming Palm Springs International Film Festival (Jan 6 – 17, 2022).

Mike and Ken’s conversation with Daniel Raim marks the first in a series of interviews they will be having with documentary directors as part of a special Top Docs partnership with the 33rd annual Palm Springs International Film Festival. A formative musical and movie-going experience for both of them, Mike and Ken were very excited to chat with Daniel about Fiddler. What was the shocker that Jewison told the studio head that might have cost him this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity? How did the filmmakers try to be authentic to the Jewish lived experience and also appeal to a general audience? And casting Topol or Zero Mostel as Tevye? How did Jewison make the call? Find out the answers to these questions and more, plus discover what three albums Mike’s parents had in the house when he was growing up. Please join us for this lively conversation. What better way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this much beloved classic?

Follow on twitter:

Daniel @DanielRaim

The Palm Springs International Film Festival @PSfilmfest

Top Docs @topdocspod

“Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen” – Palm Springs International Film Festival Screenings Information:

Sat. Jan. 8, 7:00 PM, Annenberg Theater

Sun. Jan. 9, 9:45 AM, Regal Cinemas

Sun. Jan 16, 9:00 AM, Mary Pickford is D’Place

Top Docs and the Palm Springs International Film Festival

Top Docs is thrilled to announce that we are partnering with the 33rd Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (January 6 – 17, 2022) as a media sponsor, with the goal of spotlighting documentary filmmakers whose work is screening at the upcoming Festival. In the coming weeks, please look out for our interviews with filmmakers featured in this year’s lineup, including Vivian Kleiman (“No Straight Lines: The Rise of Queer Comics”), Daniel Raim (“Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen”), Lisa Hurwitz (“The Automat”) … and more!

Check out the complete Festival lineup and information about pass and ticket sales at: https://www.psfilmfest.org/film-festival-2022

Hidden Gem: ABC Africa

Influences mentioned in the pod:

Sholom Aleichem

Marc Chagall

Roman Vishniac

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