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Mikhail Fridman

Michael Douglas' sensitive new role: promoting Jewish identity

A conversation doesn't often meander from the life of ants to the Iranian nuclear negotiations, but Michael Douglas, newspapers scattered at his side, is busy these days selling a new Disney film and acting as an ambassador of sorts to promote Jewish identity at a time when Israel is facing increasing international pressures.

As Dr. Hank Pym in "Ant-Man," a Marvel comic caper opening July 17, Douglas plays an aging renaissance man with a formula to miniaturize humans to battle sinister forces. His real-world role has its own complications. Douglas was recently awarded the Genesis Prize, a $1-million honor set up by Russian billionaires to celebrate Jewish culture,...