Steadfast backing

Hollywood declares support for Israel, as Disney pledges $2 million

Celebrities call on entertainment community to speak out forcefully against Hamas, and Disney gives humanitarian aid; Gal Gadot posts photos of abducted Israelis

Jessica Steinberg, The Times of Israel's culture and lifestyles editor, covers the Sabra scene from south to north and back to the center

Gal Gadot arrives at the ninth Breakthrough Prize ceremony at The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles, on, April 15, 2023. (Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
Gal Gadot arrives at the ninth Breakthrough Prize ceremony at The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles, on, April 15, 2023. (Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

More than 700 leaders from the entertainment industry signed an open letter released Thursday by the non-profit entertainment industry organization Creative Community For Peace in support of Israel after Hamas’s murderous rampage in southern Israel.

The celebrities and entertainment executives who signed include Gal Gadot, Jerry Seinfeld, Jamie Lee Curtis, Chris Pine, Mayim Bialik, Liev Schreiber, Amy Schumer, Michael Douglas, Debra Messing, Haim Saban, Mark Hamill, Rick Yorn, Howie Mandel, Julian Edelman, Antoine Fuqua and others.

“My heart is aching for the lives lost and families shattered,” said Gadot. “I’m praying for everyone who has been affected by Hamas’s terrorism and brutality. And I hope that the world remains steadfast in their support of the Israeli people.”

The letter calls on the entertainment community to speak out forcefully against Hamas, following its heinous terrorist onslaught last Saturday.

In addition to the more than 1,300 Israelis murdered, most of them civilians slaughtered in their communities and at an outdoor festival, citizens of the US, UK, Canada, France, Thailand, Nepal, Russia, Ukraine, Cambodia, Germany, Philippines, Chile, Brazil, Italy, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Ireland have been identified as either missing or killed.

The letter urges support for Israel, to refrain from sharing misinformation about the war, and do whatever is in their power to urge the terrorist organization to return the innocent hostages to their families.

The statement is the first of its kind – a call from the entertainment industry unequivocally voicing support for Israel and condemning Hamas’s terrorism.

On her Twitter page, Gadot posted photos and details of kidnapped Israelis, including young children, and noted that “there are hundreds of missing innocent Israelis, their families broken and begging for any piece of information, any lead to help bring them home.”

She said she was “using my platform to share their names. their faces, to tell the world what is happening,” and asked, “Please share their photos, share the stories. Together let’s #BringThemBack.”

The Walt Disney Company announced it is donating $2 million to organizations that are providing humanitarian relief in the region following the overwhelming terrorist attacks.

“We must all do what we can to support the innocent people experiencing so much pain, violence, and uncertainty – particularly children,” said Disney CEO Robert A. Iger. “We condemn these attacks, the hate that motivated them, and all acts of terrorism, and we will continue working to find more ways to provide support in the region, and to honor the victims, their families, and all those affected by this war.”

Disney is donating $1 million to Magen David Adom, an affiliate of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies that provides emergency medical and blood banking services in Israel, and $1 million to other nonprofit organizations working in the region, particularly those with a focus on providing aid to children.

Company employees have been participating in Disney’s Matching Gifts program as well, matching eligible charitable donations made by employees up to $25,000.

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