When I hung out with Brett Ratner briefly in Vegas last summer, he asked me if I had read the pick-up artist book The Game. It was, he told me, his favorite book, and not just because he’s in it (he told me what page numbers, but I don’t remember them anymore). Brett Ratner’s definitely a swinging party guy who loves the ladies*, so the idea that he’ll be directing a biopic about Playboy founder Hugh Hefner is… kind of perfect.
The Hefner movie has been in the hopper for a while, and 8 Mile writer Scott Silver was once trying to make it a musical. Oliver Stone had been attached for a while, but he recently left (to do the ‘Why didn’t we capture Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan” movie, Jawbreaker), leaving the door open for The Rat, who had a take on Hef’s life that delighted the bestroked old feller.
John Hoffman (who I think is the writer/director of the seminal alien pooch picture, Good Boy!) is writing the script. Ratner hasn’t decided if the Ratner movie will be his Rush Hour 3 follow-up – he’s waiting on a rewrite from Russell Gewirtz heist picture set in Trump Tower which may actually feature Donald Trump himself (what a coup getting that guy to agree to go before a camera. Maybe they can get Salinger next). If the Hef movie comes together first, that’ll be next. Considering that Hef is 81 and it would be nice to have him at the premiere, I’d recommend Ratner shelve the Trump tripe for the time being.
*And considering that he’s essentially a schlubby, chubby, hairy dweeb, he does well – he was sticking it in Rebecca Gayheart loooong before he was ‘Brett Ratner.’