Jeremy Piven is surely a douche of the highest order, but I do believe that he had mercury poisoning and that’s why he had to withdraw from his play, Speed The Plow, last December. (He was sued for it, but the arbitrator ruled in his favor last month and determined that he didn’t violate his contract.)
Mercury poisoning just doesn’t seem like something you would make up. Piven also seemed sincere to me in his appearance explaining the incident on Letterman. He went on at length about his medical problems and you could tell that he really went through all that. He still came across as an arrogant dick, sure, but I do think that he was seriously ill.
Piven isn’t taking kindly to a small show performed at Joe’s Pub in NY City in which he’s being mocked over the mercury debacle. From the description on the Joe’s Pub website, it sounds like the show, The Piven Monologues, consists of people reading some of the skeptical reactions in the press to Piven’s mercury poisoning. The guy is a supreme dick and you can really understand why people don’t buy his side of the story and why he’s become such a target. Piven can’t stand it, though, and had his lawyer send out a cease and desist:
SELF-proclaimed sushi sufferer Jeremy Piven has slapped the Public Theater with a “cease and desist” letter over “The Piven Monologues,” a comic look at the star’s case of mercury poisoning and subsequent pullout from Broadway’s “Speed-the-Plow.” The show was staged last night and another performance is set for next month. Says Piven attorney Marty Singer, “We didn’t say you cannot do the play, we said you can’t make defamatory statements about our client.” An arbitrator ruled last month that Piven did not break his contract when he bailed. A theater rep declined to comment.
[From The NY Post]
Apparently The Public Theater owns Joe’s Pub and that’s why they’re the target of the lawsuit. (Crazy Days and Nights has more on that.)
This isn’t the first time that Piven has found jokes about his condition unfunny – he is said to have screamed at Chris Kattan last month for cracking wise about it.
The truth expert at Eyes for Lies often explains that anger is a natural response to being accused unfairly, and I think that Piven is offended because he went through the roughest time of his life and is being mocked for it. He’s not helping his already ruined image by getting so worked up and defensive, though. There’s a very good reason why people are so reluctant to believe him.
Here’s Jeremy Piven competing in the Malibu Triathlon this weekend. What a stud. Credit: Fame Pictures