Mideast Violence Doesn't Slow Hollywood's Flights to Israel

Political Bromance Brews

Once the Democratic National Committee's biggest individual donor, entertainment mogul Haim Saban quietly withdrew into political "hiatus" after Barack Obama's election. Pictured, Cheryl and Haim Saban.

From Avi Lerner's recent return from Tel Aviv to Stacy Keibler's Dead Sea mud bath, the show must go on. Says producer Howard Rosenman: "I'm not at all afraid."

This story first appeared in the Dec. 7 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

It seemed likely that the oft-frequented El Al round trips from L.A. to T.A. would come to a standstill with the advent of the Gaza crisis. Not so. Producer Avi Lerner was actually in Tel Aviv the week of Nov. 19 with no plans to return in the near future.

Haim Saban took part in the Nov. 18 pro-Israel rally at the federal building in Westwood while his wife, Cheryl, was in New York for her new role as a representative to the United Nations.

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WME's Ari Emanuel and Rick Ross got back just before the fighting began. Stacy Keibler was snapped Nov. 16 with Dead Sea mud on her bikinied body.

And producer Howard Rosenman (Sparkle, Milk) also is defying fear. "I'm going!" he tells THR. "Over Christmas and New Year's. People in Tel Aviv are just going on with their lives. I'm not at all afraid."

In Treatment producer and Israeli actress-activist Noa Tishby lives in L.A. but commutes to Tel Aviv. "Unfortunately, we're used to this," she says. "I'm making a deal with a manager there who said he couldn't write back for a few days -- because he just got drafted to Gaza."

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Tel Aviv Gindi Fashion Week producer Motty Reif is waiting to see whether the Missoni family will still present its spring/summer 2013 show from Dec. 16 to 20.

And there's talk that Alanis Morissette, set to perform Dec. 3, might cave to pressure from pro-Palestinian groups encouraging her to boycott Israel.