Three Bookstores Canceled Events With “Stranger Things” Star Brett Gelman After He Voiced Support for Israel

Brett Gelman

Weirdness comes with the job for Brett Gelman, star of the television show “Stranger Things” and author of a new book, titled “The Terrifying Realm of the Possible: Nearly True Stories.”

But when three bookstores suddenly canceled his book events, there was no strange mystery around why—it was backlash for his support of Israel’s right to defend itself.

Gelman told the New York Post, “The bookstores canceled because of protester intimidation. 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.” When he offered to provide his own security for the events, the bookstores declined.

Since the horrific Hamas attack on October 7, Gelman has been vocal in his support for Israel’s right to exist. He has visited the country multiple times, including hospital visits to victims and an appearance on a sketch show to lampoon the anti-Israel protests on U.S. college campuses. He also spoke at the “March for Israel” rally in Washington, D.C., in November.

Gelman has described the cancellations as scared responses to “the screams of bullies,” but an owner of one of the bookstores admitted to the politics behind his decision:

Bill Petrocelli, a co-owner of Book Passage, told J. (The Jewish News of Northern California) the event was canceled due to “intemperate and ill-advised remarks that [Gelman] made against some other ethnic and social groups.” He did not specify what remarks offended him. Notably, the only groups Gelman has criticized are antisemites and Hamas.

While Gelman is taking safety precautions, he will not hide. “Am I scared? Absolutely,” he told the New York Post. “I think I’d be insane not to be scared.”

But he’s not letting that fear stop him from promoting his book, and he’s working to reschedule the canceled events at Jewish community centers and synagogues . “I am proud of my book and I’m really excited for everybody to read it,” he said. “I can’t let these people sully my experience, but people need to know that this is happening to Jewish people all the time.”

Take Action

Contact these bookstores and demand they stop fueling antisemitic intimidation! Tell them to put Brett Gelman back on the calendar:  

The Book Stall in Winnetka, Illinois: 847-446-8880

Book Passage in San Francisco, California: 415-835-1020 

Book Soup in Los Angeles, California: 310-659-3110 


Share on Social Media
Scroll to Top