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John Malkovich to star in new David Mamet play Bitter Wheat, inspired by Harvey Weinstein

David Mamet's new play will make its premiere in London

John Malkovich
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

John Malkovich will star in the world premiere of new David Mamet play Bitter Wheat, which opens in the West End in June.

Written and directed by Mamet, the piece is based on the story of producer Harvey Weinstein, who was charged by New York police for sexual harassment and assault in 2018.

Malkovich plays a studio head Barney Fein alongside Doon Mackichan as Fein's assistant Sondra in the piece. In an interview with BBC Radio 4, Malkovich said that Weinstein was the "starting point" for Mamet's play. He added that it was: "a black farce about a very badly behaved media mogul."

Bitter Wheat is not Mamet's first piece involving film producers – his 1988 play Speed-The-Plow was set in Hollywood and followed the relationship between a producer and a director. Mamet's most recent piece in the West End was a new revival of Glengarry Glen Ross starring Christian Slater, which is now embarking on a UK tour with Mark Benton and Nigel Harman.

Malkovich was last in London when he directed Good Canary at Rose Theatre Kingston, starring Freya Mavor and Harry Lloyd. He recently starred in The ABC Murders as the legendary detective Hercule Poirot.

Mackichan is known for TV including Smack the Pony, Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge and Plebs.

Bitter Wheat runs at the Garrick Theatre for a limited season from 7 June to 14 September with an opening night on 19 June.

Tickets are on sale now.

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