John Malkovich in first rehearsal images from Weinstein-inspired play

John Malkovich stars as a Hollywood mogul inspired by Harvey Weinstein in rehearsal images from his first West End play in nearly 30 years.

The Oscar-nominated actor will explore the Me Too movement in Bitter Wheat as he stars as Barney Fein – a Hollywood producer and “bloated monster”.

He will play opposite Doon Mackichan as Fein’s assistant Sondra and Ioanna Kimbook as Yung Kim Li, with Alexander Arnold as Roberto.

Doon Mackichan (Helen Maybanks/PA)
Doon Mackichan (Helen Maybanks/PA)

Teddy Kempner will play Doctor Wald, Matthew Pidgeon will appear as The Writer and Zephryn Taitte plays Charles Arthur Brown.

Fein has been described as a “depraved Hollywood mogul” who “devours the young he has lured to his cave”, while the play “rips the pashmina off the suppurating wound which is show business”.

Malkovich previously told the BBC that Weinstein was the “starting point” for the play and “a reaction to all the news that came out” about him.

The play’s writer and director David Mamet (Helen Maybanks/PA)
The play’s writer and director David Mamet (Helen Maybanks/PA)

But he said as the production developed, it came to explore wider questions of power in the entertainment industry.

Allegations of sexual assault against Weinstein, one of Hollywood’s most powerful figures, triggered an industry-wide reckoning for men accused of improper behaviour.

It quickly spread beyond the confines of the industry, with millions of women using the hashtag #MeToo to tell their stories of sexual harassment and discrimination.

The play is written and directed by Pulitzer prize winner David Mamet and will open at the Garrick Theatre on June 7, with press night on June 19.