Acting legend John Malkovich will star in Bitter Wheat, David Mamet’s new play inspired by disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
Malkovich plays Barney Fein, a depraved studio head, who preys on the young talent he lures into his sphere of influence with promises of stardom and threats of recrimination.
The play will have its world premiere at the Garrick Theatre, London in June 2019.
Malkovich described the play as “a black farce about a very badly behaved media mogul” and that Weinstein was “starting point” for the play and “a reaction to the all the news that came out last year” about him.
Weinstein has been accused by numerous women of rape or sexual assault and the allegations have led to not only the #MeToo movement but a closer look at Hollywood and it’s murky underbelly. Weinstein denies any claims of non-consensual sex and has described many allegations against him as “patently false”.
Malkovich, who is best known for his film roles including Burn After Reading, Dangerous Liaisons, Being John Malkovich and In the Line of Fire has numerous stage credits to his name including Of Mice and Men, The Libertine, The Glass Menagerie, Big Mother and The Dumb Waiter.
He was most recently seen in the BBC adaptation of the Agatha Christie novel The ABC Murders, tv series’ Billions and The New Pope and the Netflix film Bird Box.
Written by Pulitzer Prize-winning author, director and playwright David Mamet, the play is described as ‘funnier than The Iceman Cometh, more chaos than Richard III, and without all the stupid, so-called ‘poetry’.
David Mamet has written some of the most iconic plays of the last 50 years including Sexual Perversity in Chicago, American Buffalo, Glengarry Glen Ross, Speed-the-Plow, and Oleanna.
The cast also includes Doon Mackichan (best known for Channel 4 series Smack the Pony, BBC1 sitcom, Beast, & Knowing me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge) as Barney’s assistant Sondra and Ioanna Kimbook (Measure for Measure, Wanamaker Festival) as Yung Kim Li.
Bitter Wheat is booking from 7 June 2019 until 14 September 2019 at the Garrick Theatre, London.