Mike Myers Is Back Back Back

Playing an Indian guru in, erm, The Love

Mike Myers Is Back Back Back

by empire |
Published on

Clearly, all the talk crowning Sacha Baron Cohen as the New Peter Sellers, for his astonishing character work as Borat, has lit a fire under the posterior of one Mike Myers, who of course was the Old New Peter Sellers – for his just-announced new movie will see him play a role that sounds a heck of a lot like one played by the Old Old Peter Sellers. That is to say, Peter Sellers.

For Myers’ return to live-action comedy – his first movie since The Cat In The Hat – will see him play Pitka, an eccentric Indian who is called in to solve a couple’s relationship troubles, in The Love Guru.

Myers has already emulated Sellers’ achievements by playing multiple characters in a movie (in both So I Married An Axe Murderer and the Austin Powers franchise, which sadly now seems dead; no Casino-Royale style reinvention here), but this is an obvious nod to Sellers, who is Myers’ comedy hero. Sellers, of course, played an Indian character in the 1968 Blake Edwards comedy, The Party.

To be honest, Empire is a little torn about this. We’re glad to see the deeply gifted Myers back on the big screen (in a capacity other than voicing Shrek) for the first time in yonks (his last movie was The Cat In The Hat and the less said about that, the better), but we can’t help but acknowledge that this project is potentially a hot potato.

The Party may have seemed like a blast in the 1960s, but if you’ve seen it recently – and as chance would have it, Empire has – then you’ll know that, in amongst some decent slapstick, Sellers’ no doubt well-intentioned performance could be perceived as racist. We’re talking Mickey Rooney in Breakfast At Tiffany’s racist here.

You would imagine, in these enlightened times, that Myers will tread more carefully. After all, he should have a good handle on the material – he co-wrote the script, along with Graham Gordy, whose IMDbiography states that he wrote My Dog Skip and forthcoming drama, War Eagle, so he automatically seems like the perfect choice to co-author The Love Guru.

No word yet on who will play the needy couple helped out by Pitka, but we wouldn’t be surprised if Myers played at least one of them. The movie does, however, have a director – Marco Schnabel, a protégé of Austin Powers director, Jay Roach – and a producer, in the shape of Mike De Luca. Paramount Pictures is writing the cheques.

As ever, more on this project when we get it.

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