Billionaire to Make Aliyah

Israel soon will welcome a special immigrant –billionaire Hollywood film producer and Israeli-born Arnon Milchan, according to Globes.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu, | updated: 14:23

Arnon Milchan
Arnon Milchan
Israel news photo

Arnon Milchan, a 10th generation Israeli who became a billionaire as a Hollywood film producer, soon will return to Israel as a “returning immigrant,” Globes reported Monday. He is eligible to receive the same tax breaks and other benefits as new immigrants and returning nationals, reportedly one of the reasons that helped Milchan decide to return to the Jewish State.


Milchan was born in Israel in December 1944 into a family with a fertilizer company, which he helped transform into a large chemical business that marketed a new nutrient that quadrupled the yield for citrus fruit. "He's the Israeli who made the desert bloom,” according to screenwriter Shawn Slovo, quoted in Los Angeles Magazine.


He has confirmed reports that he acted as an intermediary between Israeli and American defense contractors in the 1970s, 80s and prior to the Gulf War in 1991 but vehemently denies charges that he was an arms dealer. He reportedly worked as an undercover agent for Israel.


His career made him a billionaire after he bankrolled film directors in the 1960s and then produced on his own, in Israel, France and then in the United States. His latest movie, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, logged in more than $500 million in box office receipts.


Forbes ranked him as the 240th wealthiest American, with assets of $1.1 billion, Milchan founded his own New Regency Productions Company and once made a bid to buy out Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM).


Hollywood cartoonist, writer and producer Terry Gilliam has been quoted as saying, "He ran into Hollywood's anti-Semitism. They don't like real Jews. They don't like Israelis. Arnon has a Levantine soul. Everything is horse trading and carpet dealing."


Milchan is not the first Hollywood success story to move to Israel. Tzvi Fishman was a successful Hollywood screenwriter before making Aliyah in 1984. Since moving to Israel, he has co-authored 4 books with Rabbi David Samson and has been was awarded the Israel Ministry of Education Prize for Jewish Creativity and Culture. He also blogs for Israel National News.


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