A spiritual conversation with the young Hollywood horror movie writer who used to watch Jewish bodies before they were buried in Toronto

Hasidic man
Bulgarian actor Anton Trendafilov plays the role of Yosille, a misguided New York Hasidic man who conjures up an ancient female evil spirit in the new Jewish-themed horror movie ‘The Devil’s Offering’, written by Canadian Hanina Hoffman, the son of a former Toronto rabbi at Adath Israel Congregation. (Supplied photo).

Hanina “Hank” Hoffman originally didn’t want to accept the offer to write a macabre flick with a Jewish theme. But he changed his mind once he realized he could help change the way Hasidic Jews are so often portrayed on screens.

He wanted to create something more sympathetic, like “Shtisel: The Horror Movie.”

The resulting film is called The Devil’s Offering, and is currently available for digital rental and purchase online.

Hoffman channelled his upbringing in Toronto as the son of a former ritual director at Adath Israel Congregation, including a teenaged job as a shomer who sat with bodies before they were buried at Benjamin’s Park Memorial Chapel.

He joins The CJN Daily to reveal all the subtle—and not-so-subtle—nods to Jewish mysticism, including the film’s ancient demon.

What we talked about:.

  • Watch the trailer for The Devil’s Offering.
  • Read more about Hanina Hoffman on The CJN.ca


The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Zachary Kauffman is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network. To subscribe to this podcast, please watch this video. Donate to The CJN and receive a charitable tax receipt by clicking here.