Netflix’s Stranger Things star Brett Gelman says two stops on his book signing tour have been canceled due to antisemitism and anti-Israel intimidation in the Democrat-controlled cities of San Francisco and Chicago.
“The bookstores canceled because of protester intimidation,” Gelman told New York Post. “I didn’t get a lot of specifics — [but] I definitely believe it’s because of my vocal support of Israel and because of the fact that I’m Jewish.”
“I think that this is a completely antisemitic act,” the actor, who played Murray Bauman on Stranger Things, added.
Gelman, who is Jewish, said he will no longer be promoting his fiction debut, “The Terrifying Realm of the Possible: Nearly True Stories,” at Book Passage in San Francisco, California, and The Book Stall in Winnetka, Illinois — just 16 miles north of downtown Chicago.
The book signing tour stops were part of a four-city tour for Gelman’s upcoming collection of short stories.
Gelman added that while he now fears for his own safety, he won’t be threatened into silence. The actor still plans on proceeding with his book tour stops in New York on March 18 and West Hollywood on March 27.
“I mean, I won’t be surprised if they encounter the same type of intimidation, but I hope those two venues don’t feel it’s necessary to cancel the events,” Gelman said.
The actor-turned-author added, “If I have to get security, I’ll get security.”
“I believe in the solidarity of the Jewish people, that they have my back. That’s sort of been the silver lining in all of this,” Gelman said. “It’s really mobilized the Jewish community to stand up and band together in the face of this crazy moment when antisemitism has been normalized and so has the support of Islamic fundamentalism and Islamic jihad.”
Gelman added that his book has “nothing to do with Israel,” but that it does underscore his Jewish identity.
The actor’s book will feature short stories highlighting characters in a “uniquely strange stage of life” as they negotiate themes such as morality, fame, religion, and death.
Gelman, who identifies himself as a “Zionist pig” on social media, has been very outspoken about his support for Israel.
In December, the actor visited victims at a hospital in Ra’anana, Israel. That same month, he appeared on the Israeli show, Eretz Nehederet, portraying a professor from the University of California-Berkley in a sketch that blasted anti-Israel protesters at universities in the United States.
In January, Gelman wrote on X/Twitter, “If you do not at least partially blame Hamas for the deaths of its people you don’t care about Palestinians. You just hate Jews. If you do not call for the release of the hostages you as you call for a ceasefire you just hate Jews. And if you hate Jews please unfollow me.”
If you do not at least partially blame Hamas for the deaths of its people you don’t care about Palestinians. You just hate Jews. If you do not call for the release of the hostages you as you call for a ceasefire you just hate Jews. And if you hate Jews please unfollow me.
— Brett Gelman (@brettgelman) January 31, 2024