Something fishy about Jeremy Piven's claim of a sushi O.D.


Broadway's miseries have spilled over to the fishing industry.

Jeremy Piven, the cocky little actor who made his name playing cocky little agent Ari Gold on HBO's Entourage, has bailed on his role in a revival of David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow, sending producers of the three-man play into a tizzy of re-casting so it can complete its run as scheduled on February 22.

Piven's doctor, Dr. Carlon M. Colker, blamed the reported toxicity of Piven's blood on his consumption of sushi and Chinese herbs. Naturally, the doctor doesn't really know for sure what's behind Piven's malady, but the nigiri gets the rap in the press anyway.

Fine. Blame the fish. They can't really defend themselves, and sushi's reputation was wrecked after the New York Times declared there were dangerous levels of mercury in bluefin tuna. Most other varieties of sushi, even other types of tuna, were not reported to be much of an issue, but the bad rap for raw fish appears to be sticking.

But for all those fans of raw fish, the Center for Consumer Freedom has an interesting tidbit to point out: If the story is true, then Piven would be the first documented case of someone getting mercury poisoning from sushi sold in American restaurants or grocery stores. It doesn't happen.