Innocent Spouse on the Georgetown casting couch
Carol Joynt's page-turner memoir about life after husband Howard Joynt's death is filled with stories of betrayal, survival, re-invention, and a bare-knuckle battle with the IRS that could well keep you up at night.
Innocent Spouse is a terrific read.
But what about the movie?
Carol’s crystal-clear portrait, roguish-to-A-list characters, and a who's-who cast of friends would make a good flick -- then, a TV series. Howard was the proprietor of Nathans, Georgetown’s once famous saloon, a good backdrop for intrigue, assignations, and political plotting.
The series, “Nathans,” could be like The West Wing, set in Georgetown.
This week,The Georgetown Dish editors sat on a casting couch – just to think, dear readers. Here's what we came up with:
Carol, the innocent-yet-savvy journalist ingénue, could be played by Cate Blanchett (1 vote), Sharon Stone (1 vote) or Gwyneth Paltrow (1 vote). Meg Ryan was an afterthought entry by a friend of the Dish. A political wag among us wanted to cast former Speaker Nancy Pelosi as a mature Carol Joynt, muttering something about how both learned, later in life – in Ronald Reagan’s words – to “trust but verify.”
Carol's prince charming in the early years, Howard, who bequeathed her with a few major surprises like a $3 million tax bill, might be played by Alec Baldwin (2 votes) or William Hurt (1 vote), while another editor wanted Tommy Lee Jones. That rascal Eliot Spitzer, now making intellectual waves on CNN, after a fall from grace in New York, could be a contender, too.
All of the Dish’s editors agree that Bob Woodward and other Washington notables be played by the VIPs themselves. Sam Elliott could play CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite (who, in the memoir, asks Carol to marry him after a decades-long friendship; she declined). Wedding Crashers’ Christopher Walken or funny man John Lithgow could play Carol's boss Larry King. (Speaking of which, Wedding Crashers director David Dobkin is a Washingtonian – having grown up in Bethesda.)
Finally, who would play Carol’s local cracker-jack attorney Sheldon Cohen? There are upwards of twenty-thousand D.C. lawyers who would stand in line for that cameo. What about the role of Keith Hernandez, the baseball legend who woos Carol in scenic spots and glittering New York hotspots. Could it be that former Baltimore Orioles pitcher and now color commentator Jim “Cakes” Palmer is available to travel to Shea Stadium for a few minutes of script reading?
Dish to Aaron Sorkin: stay tuned…