The Nebbisher Rebbe

By Daniel Treiman

Published May 09, 2007, issue of May 11, 2007.

American Apparel founder Dov Charney is notorious for ads featuring scantily clad young women modeling his company’s clothes while striking provocative poses. Now, it appears, he’s found religion — or at least he’s found the appropriate rebbe: Woody Allen.

The trendy T-shirt purveyor recently put up a billboard at the busy corner of Houston and Allen Streets on New York’s Lower East Side featuring a massive image of the neurotic filmmaker dressed as a Hasid from his masterpiece “Annie Hall.” Beside the picture, written in Yiddish, are the words, “der heyliker rebe” — “the holy rebbe.”

Responding to an inquiry from the Forward, Alex Spunt of American Apparel explained: “Woody Allen is our spiritual leader.”

Editor’s Note: For an updated version of this article, please click here.

New American Apparel Ad



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