In a profile piece pegged to Mamet’s new novel, Chicago, the Tribune‘s Rick Kogan wrote that there was a new play sitting on Mamet’s kitchen table. “I was talking with my Broadway producer, and he said, ‘Why don’t you write a play about Harvey Weinstein?’ And so I did,” Mamet explained.
Mamet added, “I think about this a lot now. I have a bunch of daughters, a young son. Every society has to confront the ungovernable genie of sexuality and tries various ways to deal with it, and none of them work very well. There is great difficulty when you are switching modes, which we seem to be doing now. People go crazy. They start tearing each other to bits.”
No details are available about the Weinstein play beyond the provisional title, Bitter Wheat, and the information that a celebrated Chicago stage actor now in movies has expressed interest in playing the lead.
Mamet famously addressed a student’s allegations of sexual misconduct and their effect on a male academic’s career in his confrontational two-character drama Oleanna, first produced in 1992.
The writer won a Pulitzer Prize in 1984 for his play Glengarry Glen Ross and has been nominated for two Oscars, for the adapted screenplays of 1982’s The Verdict and 1997’s Wag the Dog. He is a public conservative who has attended a fundraiser for Ted Cruz and supported the 2016 presidential bid of Carly Fiorina.
“My whole profession has been about pissing people off,” Mamet said to THR at the Rome Film Fest in 2016. “There’s a lot of reaction in my country and the West about people saying things that are politically inconvenient, which is new speak for ‘true.’ ”
Weinstein is now facing over 60 allegations of sexual misconduct and is battling a racketeering lawsuit filed by six women in New York. The LAPD has also submitted three cases of alleged sexual assault to the Los Angeles district attorney, and Scotland Yard is investigating multiple allegations against him in the U.K.
Reached by The Hollywood Reporter, the office of Mamet’s regular Broadway producer, Jeffrey Richards, had no further comment on the Weinstein play.