Herman Wouk wrote a very Jewish novel, and the producers felt that it just might have been too ethnic for the general public, so they cast Irish-as-Paddy's-Pig Kelly in the male lead and Russian-French Wood as the heroine. Danny Kaye was originally penciled in to play the role but
declined, so Kelly got the nod. There was a lot of flack from the studio and writer Freeman almost took his name off the credits but changed his mind at the last minute. Wood changes her name from Morgenstern to Morningstar, which signals her desire to bury her cultural background. At the bar
mitzvah of her brother, Best, she questions the stern religious rule of her father, Sloane, and m...