Jared Leto Set To Play Playboy Founder Hugh Hefner In Upcoming Biopic
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The legendary playboy Hugh Hefner only died last week and yet there are plans already underway to immortalise him further in a big motion picture. But with the vast array of actors in Hollywood and elsewhere, there must be someone out there that not only looks like the sailor hat wearing, cigar smoking, publishing magnate, but also embodies everything that he stood for.
Well it appears that the director behind the upcoming biopic, Brett Ratner, has found his leading man: Jared Leto. The Suicide Squad actor reportedly approached Ratner about playing the Hef when the producer-director got the rights to his story.
Ratner has told The Hollywood Reporter: "Jared is an old friend. He told me, 'I want to play him. I want to understand him'. And I really believe Jared can do it. He's one of the great actors of today."
Obviously, Jared won't be able to sit down with the man himself to try and portray him in the best possible way, but Ratner adds: "There's enough footage on Hef out there that Jared will be able to get as much information as he wants."
Brett reportedly got the rights to Hefner's story off producer Jerry Weintraub when he died in 2015. But he's been interested in the project for ten years, with Robert Downey Jr's name once being thrown into the ring for the actor to play Hefner.
While the filming was underway for Suicide Squad, Leto reportedly got a bit freaky and sent his co-stars some interesting items, including used condoms and sticky Playboy magazines. This could have been hit early signal that he wanted to become Hefner.
The Hef in 1966. Credit: PA
Leto is known for being a method actor when taking on various film roles. He dropped 13kg (30lbs) and waxed his body from head to toe when playing a transgendered woman in Dallas Buyers Club, which won him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
He reportedly gave up sex and lived on the streets for two weeks to understand what it's like living rough before filming Requiem For a Dream. He most recently used contact lenses to mimic the feeling of being blind for Blade Runner 2049 where he plays Niander Wallace, a blind, manipulative, replicant manufacturer.
So it will be interesting to see how he goes about method acting to play the renowned Hugh Hefner, who never stopped hosting parties or entertaining a bevy of beautiful women.
Sources: The Hollywood Reporter