Bloomsday Has Arrived in Hollywood

The Brothers BloomBloomsday! How ‘The Brothers Bloom’ madcap tale of globe-trotting style and romance once again puts the faux Hollywood surname ‘Bloom’ in lights

By Dan Bloom (no relation to any of the Blooms in this story)

BOSTON, MASS (RUSHPRNEWS) 09/18/2008–Can anyone tell me what’s with all these Blooms in Hollywood movies? And Broadway shows? There was “Blume in Love” and Leo Bloom in “The Producers” and Claire Bloom and Orlando Bloom in all kinds of films, and now comes “The Brothers Bloom” directed by Rian Johnson. Does somebody have a copyright on the name Bloom? Does Harold Bloom at Yale know anything about this?

LEO BLOOMIt all began, of course, with James Joyce in Dublin, Ireland, when he wrote “Ulysses” and made Leopold and Molly Bloom his main characters.

Now “The Brothers Bloom” — starring Adrien Brody and Mark Ruffalo as brothers who target a drop-dead gorgeous heiress played by the drop-dead gorgeous Rachel Weisz — comes at us full steam ahead, full of “Belgians, Russians and Lamborghis”, as one critic put it, and what a blooming mess of a good time it is!

Bravo, Rian Johnson.

The movie begins blooming on December 19 in New York and Los Angeles and opens wide on January 16 after the New Year. Will it bloom near you? Check out your local listings on the web to make sure. Previews in Toronto were well-received and word of mouth is spreading, er, blooming.

But really now, what’s with all these Blooms in Hollywood?

In the movie, Ruffalo plays Stephen Bloom, the older brother of the duo. Brody plays the younger brother who for some odd reason does not get a first name at all in the entire movie and is just called “Bloom” all the way through.

That even got Adrien Brody to thinking out loud in an interview he did in Premiere magazine. When reporter Jenni Miller asked him if maybe his name was meant to be was a verb — “to bloom” — in the film, he replied: “That’s probably a good question for [the director/writer Johnson], but maybe it’s true too. Because I’m also referred to as Bloom, which would mean, what, my [name is Mr.] Bloom Bloom? Bloom is blooming? It’s a verb.”

Hollywood is blooming, that’s for sure. Almost every movie you see has a character named Bloom in it. Maybe it’s a Hollywood trade secret, like the man named Alan Smithees who sometimes is credited as being the director of a movie when the actual director is too embarrassed by the final result. to have his real name appear in the credits.

Whatever, somebody should copyright the name Bloom and charge a fee everytime a movie does a Leo Bloom or a Stephen Bloom or a Leopold Bloom. What’s next: “Shakespear in Bloom”? I would not be surprised.

And don’t forget Edward Bloom in “Big Fish”, that wonderful 2003 movie adapted from Daniel Wallace’s fantastic book. (I say don’t forget Edward Bloom because that was the name of my dearly beloved uncle Eddie Bloom — New Jersey toy salesman extraordinaire — who died of cancer when I was 18.)

And also in 2003, there was Kate Winslet in “The Life of David Gale”
playing an investigative journalist named Bitsey Bloom. Where do all these “Blooms” come from?

Did I mention “Blume in Love” above? I think I did. There was also a
1935 movied movied “Love in Bloom” starring George Burns and Gracie Allen. “Blume in Love” came out back in 1973 with George Segal playing “Stephen Blume”.

A lot of people think Bloom is an American name, but it’s not. In fact, not even a real name. I know you don’t believe me, but I am going to tell you how this name Bloom came to be. I asked my father once. He told me.

You see, a lot of immigrants from Russia and Poland and Hungary and Germany and other countries in Europe came over to America in the long long ago that is ancient history, and when many of these people arrived — around the late 1890s, early 1900s — most of them could not speak English very well.

That’s because English was not their native language, as it is of most Blooms named Bloom today. So when my father’s grandfather came over to Ellis Island on a ship back in those days of long long ago, the immigration clerk asked him what his name was and my greatgrandfather
replied: “Abraham Zembalistkrevkashenko”.

This of course was way too long for the immigration form and hardly pronouncable with an American accent, so the clerk said: “Abe, you are now Abe Bloom. Welcome to America!”

bloomAnd that, dear readers, is how the Blooms of the world became known as Blooms. Don’t believe me? Ask Orlando Bloom or Claire Bloom — or Adrien Brody.



About the Author: Dan Bloom is a Rush PR News political and environmental news columnist/reporter and a freelance writer from Boston, who has been based in Asia since 1991. He graduated from Tufts University in 1971 and has worked in media, public relations and education in several countries. He is currently doing research on climate change and global warming as the founder of the Polar Cities Research Institute.   Write him at

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