Hollywood is no stranger to smart, cynical, profane, edgy dialogue and writing in their modern dramas and comedies, but for a few years they’ve been without the style’s eminent champion, David Mamet. His last film was the HBO Movie Phil Spector, preceded by the 2008 MMA fighting drama Redbelt.
Deadline reported Monday that Mamet is making his way back to the big screen via an adaptation of his play Speed-the-Plow, in which Mamet himself will adapt the stage production.
Speed-the-Plow is a movie-biz satire in which two Hollywood producers angle to get a big movie star to make a film under their studio banner, despite him being under contract with another. The two also make a bet to see who can first seduce and bed a young Hollywood upstart, who has her own motives to deceive the producers. It involves a theme that Mamet would later revisit in Wag the Dog and State and Main.
The original production appeared on Broadway in 1988, with a cast that included Mamet-regular Joe Mantegna, along with Ron Silver and none other than Madonna as the young upstart Karen. Since then, it has been revived several times both in Broadway and London, and has starred actors including Kevin Spacey, Jeff Goldblum, Lindsay Lohan, and Alfred Molina. Jeremy Piven, arguably the signature template for the fast-talking, profane Hollywood big-shot via Entourage, was once cast in a revival but dropped out due to supposed mercury poisoning from too much sushi.
No word yet on when to expect the film or who might be cast, but the past actors on stage suggest there could be a lot of good options to choose from, and Speed-the-Plow still sounds perfectly relevant today.