Hugh Hefner Getting Highbrow, Oscar-Nominee-Written Biopic

That a Hugh Hefner biopic would be made eventually was a pretty safe bet. But who knew it’d be this classy? As relayed by a word from the man himself, and as confirmed by the Hollywood Reporter, Oscar-nominated screenwriter Peter Morgan is in talks with Warner Bros. for a movie based on the life of Hef. And the centerfold gets even classier!

Morgan got his Academy Award noms for The Queen and Frost/Nixon, and also wrote The Last King of Scotland (in which Forest Whitaker took down Best Actor) and The Other Boleyn Girl (in which Eric Bana took down Natalie Portman/Scarlett Johansson). More recently, he’s wrapped up a script for a Freddie Mercury biopic starring Sacha Baron Cohen. And now Morgan might turn his attention to Hefner, the renegade man-about-town turned mummified, slightly creepy icon.

I assume Morgan will be focusing more on the early years, in which Hefner pushed forward sexual liberation and all that, and not so much on these later years, in which he tweets stuff like “After the Uno game, my girls & I ordered a late night snack & are watching the latest episode of ‘True Blood'”? As to who’ll play Hugh, let the guessing games begin. IndieWire throws out the names James Franco, who turned in a Hefner cameo in Lovelace, and Robert Downey Jr., who had previously been given Hefner’s own stamp of approval. Considering that Hefner was in his 20s when he launched Playboy, I say we look a little bit younger. And while we’re at it, let’s shake things up with a bit of stunt casting. What debonair, forward-thinking, sensitive ladies’ man who knows how to rock pajamas and understands the jet-set lifestyle could we realistically get? Wait a minute — is Drake available?

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Amos Barshad has written for New York Magazine, Spin, GQ, XXL, and the Arkansas Times. He is a staff writer for Grantland.

Archive @ AmosBarshad