Broadway Producers File Grievance Against Jeremy Piven
The producers of Broadway's Speed-the-Plow filed a grievance Friday afternoon against Jeremy Piven, who abruptly left the show in December due to mercury poisoning.
The complaint was filed with the Actors' Equity union over Piven's departure, The New York Times reports. A date for the proceedings has yet to be determined, Jeffrey Richards, one of the show's producers, says in a statement.
It is unclear if producers are seeking financial compensation.
Citing an unnamed source close to the situation, the Times reports that producers want Actors' Equity to perform an independent evaluation on Piven for medical evidence and to look into the actor's history of trying to leave the show early. Richards said last month that Piven, complaining of "exhaustion," requested to be released from the three-person play a week or two ahead of its Feb. 22 closing date.
A rep for Piven calls the charges "absurd and outrageous," reiterating that the Entourage star dropped out on doctors' orders.
Piven left the production two months early, citing a high mercury count, which could've been caused by his daily sushi diet. At the time of his departure, many were skeptical of his diagnosis, including Plow director David Mamet.
"So my understanding is that he is leaving show business to pursue a career as a thermometer," he said.
Last week, Piven made his first appearance since becoming ill at the Golden Globes, where he called his exit a "completely humbling experience."
Piven was immediately replaced in the play by his understudy, Jordan Lage. Norbert Leo Butz stepped in a few days later, finishing up on Jan. 11, and William H. Macy joined two days later and is expected to complete the rest of the run.