New tidbits about the Jeremy Piven-destroys-Broadway story keep coming. "Mercury-filled sushi made him sick!" "Wrong! He quit early because he parties too hard!" Etc. Now an insider with the show, Speed-the-Plow, has provided some details.
The Entourage actor had apparently tried to pull some shenanigans to attend the Golden Globe awards, and the producers tried to accommodate him. Then he wanted to outright quit the show starting immediately after the Globes, asking actor friends if they'd maybe want to replace him. This displeased producers. Then suddenly Piven got mercury sick and quit for good. Our tipster tells us it's because he's a party boy:
Jeremy showed NO exhaustion as recently as last week. For six weeks, he has been trying to weasel out of his contract, citing various forms of exhaustion (nothing about mercury until a few days ago), while still going out and partying constantly into the wee hours (which has been well documented by the press and paparazzi), so it's always been pretty clear that any exhaustion is not from being on stage for 80 minutes a night. (and let us point out that 80 year old Estelle Parsons walks up and down a three story set four times while being on stage for over three hours a night in August Osage County, and has been doing so for far longer than Jeremy has been in this tiny, intermissionless Mamet play)
Two fine actors have been brought in to replace Piven, but theatre producers are still angry. They are angry because they too suspect that Piven is a drug addled diva. No one believes the mercury story!
The tipster went on to tell us that Piven was also a Jealous Judy:
Jeremy also was jealous of Raul's reviews – which were far more effusive than his merely respectable ones – and insisted on being told when critics and Tony voters were in attendance – in order to "psych himself up" as he put it. A list was subsequently provided.
So it could be for a lot reasons! But one of those reasons is probably not deadly rainbow rolls. When we saw Piven in the show, way back when it was in previews, he didn't know his lines and sure seemed exhausted. But kind of cocaine exhausted, not at-death's-door exhausted. But what do we know? We're not dietary supplement-hawking celebridoctors.
Take a look at the above video, filmed Saturday after his second-to-last show, and diagnose his mercury levels yourself.