Ukrainian Jewish

Gigi Pritzker

by stlucas on June 13, 2017

Gigi Pritzker – “Ender’s Game” UK Q&A Photocall – Odeon Leicester Square Photo Credit: Landmark / PR Photos

Birth Name: Jean Pritzker

Place of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

Date of Birth: July 27, 1962

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Gigi Pritzker is an American billionaire, film producer, and philantrophist.

Gigi is the daughter of Marian “Cindy” (Friend) and Jay Arthur Pritzker. Gigi’s parents were both Jewish. Gigi’s father’s family is known for being one of the wealthiest families in the U.S.

Her siblings are businesspeople Thomas Pritzker and John Pritzker, and musician and director Daniel Pritzker. Her paternal uncles were businesspeople Robert Pritzker and Donald Pritzker. Her cousin is actress Liesel Pritzker Simmons, who has been credited as Liesel Matthews.

Gigi’s paternal grandfather was Abram Nicholas Pritzker (the son of Nicholas Jacob Pritzker and Anna/Annie P. Cohen). Abram was a prominent businessperson. Gigi’s great-grandfather Nicholas was born in Kiev, Ukraine, the son of Jacob (Yakov Yechezel) Nicholas Prizker, who was from Russia, and of Sophia Schwartzman, who was from Germany. Gigi’s great-grandmother Anna was born in Nizhyn, Ukraine, the daughter of Eleazar Cohen and Fannie.

Gigi’s paternal grandmother was Fanny L. Doppelt (the daughter of Jacob Doppelt and Hannah/Chane Henschy/Henshi Dichter). Jacob was born in Austria, the son of Asher/Usher/Isidore Doppelt, who was from Gmina Brzozów, Poland, and of Charlotte “Lottie” Prend, who was from Brzozów, Poland. Hannah was also born in Austria, the daughter of Salomon Hersch Dichter and Chane Grossman.

Gigi’s maternal grandfather was Hugo Morris Freund/Friend (the son of Markus/Marcus Freund and Emilia/Emilie Straschnow). Hugo was a jurist, who was a Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, from 1920 to 1966. Hugo born in Prague, Bohemia (now Czech Republic). Markus was born in Veliš, Bohemia (now Czech Republic), the son of Moses Freund and Anna Weiss. Emilia was born in Mladá Boleslav, Bohemia (now Czech Republic), the daughter of Heinrich L. Straschnow and Julie Weil.

Gigi’s maternal grandmother was Sadie Cohn (the daughter of Esau M. Cohn/Cohen and Ethel Feidelberg/Faldberg). Esau and Ethel were born in Russia.

Source: Genealogy of Gigi Priztker –


James Schamus

by stlucas on June 13, 2017

Birth Name: James Allan Schamus

Place of Birth: Detroit, Michigan, U.S.

Date of Birth: September 7, 1959

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

James Schamus is an American screenwriter, producer, and director. He wrote and directed the film Indignation (2016).

James is the son of Clarita (Gershowitz) and Julian John Schamus. His parents were Jewish. James was raised in Los Angeles, California.

James is married to author Nancy Kricorian (who is of Armenian and French-Canadian descent).

James’ paternal grandfather was Abraham Schamus (the son of Solomon/Samuel Schamus and Sarah Fischell/Leoniff). Solomon was born in Russia, the son of Louis Barron. Sarah was also born in Russia, the daughter of Eliazer Fischel and Goldie.

James’ paternal grandmother was Esther Galen (the daughter of Jacob Galen/Golinsky and Rose Berkowitz). Jacob was the son of Simon Golinsky and Hian Linchush. Rose was the daughter of Avram Berkowitz and Odessah.

James’ maternal grandfather was Max Gershowitz (the son of Isaac Gershowitz and Rebecca Weinberg). Max was born in Vawkavysk, Belarus.

James’ maternal grandmother was Estelle Anker (the daughter of Phillip Anker and Sarah Byna Birnbaum). Estelle was born in Volhynia, Russia (now part of Ukraine, Belarus, and Poland). Phillip was born in Kupil, Russia (now Ukraine), the son of Modil Halvey Ancher. Sarah was born in Russia, the daughter of Velvel Birnbaum and Shayna Bella Anker.

Source: Genealogy of James Schamus –

Photo by


William Friedkin

by stlucas on May 28, 2017

Place of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

Date of Birth: August 29, 1935

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

William Friedkin is an American film director, producer, and screenwriter.

William is the son of Raechael/Rachael “Rae” (Green) and Louis Friedkin. They were both Jewish.

William’s father was born in Illinois, U.S. William’s mother was born in Kiev, Russian Empire (now Ukraine).

William’s paternal grandparents were David Friedkin and Lena Cohen. David and Lena were from Russia.

William’s maternal grandparents were Morris Green and Eva Lovenberg. Morris and Eva were from Russia.

Sources: Birth record of William Friedkin –

Marriage record of William’s parents, Louis Friedkin and Raechael/Rachael “Rae” Green –

William’s mother, Raechael/Rachael “Rae” Green, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of William Friedkin –

Photo by s_bukley/


Peter Bogdanovich

by stlucas on May 28, 2017

Birth Name: Petar Bogdanović

Place of Birth: Kingston, New York, U.S.

Date of Birth: July 30, 1939

*Serbian (father)
*Ashkenazi Jewish (mother)

Peter Bogdanovich is an American director, writer, actor, producer, critic, and film historian.

Peter is the son of Herma (Robinsohn/Robinson) and Borislav Bogdanovich.

Peter’s father was an Orthodox Christian artist from Yuma, Yugoslavia (now Serbia). Peter’s mother was born in Vienna, Austria, to a Jewish family, and later moved to Croatia.

Peter’s paternal grandparents were Antonije Bogdanović and Mara.

Peter’s maternal grandfather was Heinrich “Henry” Robinsohn/Robinson (the son of Schmuel Robinson and Taube Weisenfreund). Heinrich was born in Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine.

Peter’s maternal grandmother was Rudolfine “Finny” Zwilling (the daughter of Hersch Leib/Hermann Zwilling and Anna Chane Reiza Schmidt). Rudolfine was born in Vienna, Austria, to a father from Lviv, Ukraine, and a mother from Warka, Poland. Hermann was the son of Moses Israel Zwilling and Malie Rize Pordes. Anna Chane was the daughter of Mendel Schmidt and Rechel Moskowicz.

Source: Genealogy of Peter Bogdanovich –

Photo by kathclick/


Dave Frankel

by stlucas on May 25, 2017

Birth Name: David Marshall Frankel

Place of Birth: New York City, New York, U.S.

Date of Birth: April 2, 1959

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Dave Frankel is an American film director, screenwriter, and producer.

Dave is the son of Tobia Simone (Brown) and journalist Max Frankel. David’s siblings are Margot and Jon.

Dave’s father was born in Gera, Thuringia, and raised in Weißenfels, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, before moving to New York. David’s mother is from Brooklyn, New York. They are both Jewish.

Dave’s paternal grandfather was Jakob Fränkel (the son of Isaak Fränkel). Jakob was born in Busk, Galicia, Poland (now Ukraine).

Dave’s paternal grandmother was Mary Katze. She was born in Sokal, Galicia, Poland (now Ukraine).

Dave’s maternal grandfather was Harold M. Brown (the son of Maurice Brown and Ida). Harold was born in New York, to parents from Russia.

Dave’s maternal grandmother was Pauline Kessler. Pauline was born in Odessa, Russian Empire (now Ukraine).

Sources: David’s father’s memoir, The Times of My Life and My Life with The Times (1999) –

Obituary of Dave’s mother, Tobia Simone (Brown) Frankel –

David’s maternal great-grandparents, Maurice Brown and Ida, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Dave’s maternal grandmother, Pauline (Kessler) Brown –

Photo by s_bukley/