THE CHOSEN is based on Chaim Potok's acclaimed novel about fathers and sons, tradition and modernity, faith and doubt set in 1940s Brooklyn. Two teenagers, Reuven and Danny, are outstanding students and athletes. Danny's father (incredibly portrayed by Rod Steiger) is an ultra-Orthodox Hasidic rabbi; Reuven's father (Maximilian Schell) is an intensely secular professor. As the story unfolds, each boy learns what the other's way of life can offer. THE CHOSEN, says director Kagan, "is not just about Jews. It deals with ideas and conflicts common to all people, and how human bridges may be built across even the widest ideological gaps. The film is about being able to empathize with another human being."