Based on the play Bubble Schmeisis by Nick Cassenbaum
Nick Cassenbaum's award winning one-man stage play, Bubble Schmeisis, took us into a world of sweaty steam baths, Jewish summer camps, South London barber shops and Spurs matches, where alta kakas take you under their flabby wings and bagels are in fact beigels. The Schvitz expands on these stories, turning them into a funny, charming, feel-good feature film which puts the specificity of East End Jewish culture on the big screen in a way that is celebratory, nostalgic, and inclusive.
We love films that celebrate British immigrant families like Bend It Like Beckham and East Is East and it's great seeing shows like Unorthodox and Transparent relishing the details of Jewish sub-cultures, but it’s been a long time since British Jews have been able to shine on the big screen (with the exception of Sixty Six), and as David Baddiel said so well in his recent book Jews Don’t Count, Jews often get left out of progressive movements, despite the fact that anti-semitism is on the rise again. Jewish immigrants have been a key sub-culture in London in the past century, and as the original cultures they brought over with them risk being lost, we want to lovingly celebrate them in a way that breathes new life into them. We want to tell a proudly Jewish story with open arms, which shows the similarities between all different types of immigrant cultures in the diverse melting pot of modern day London.
There’s also a wonderful tradition of music being at the heart of Jewish stories, from Fiddler On The Roof to Yentl, and Jewish immigrants bringing their Yiddish sounds to the stage and screen, from Lionel Bart to Stephen Sondheim and George Gershwin to Pasek & Paul, and we intend to continue this tradition with The Schvitz.
Writers: Natalie Gothelf & Nick Cassenbaum
Director: Sam Baron (The Orgy)