Ellen Barkin is showing women how divorce can be mined for hilarious and profitable material. The star of "Sea of Love," who traveled through turbulent waters in her high-profile divorce from billionaire businessman Ron Perelman, has just signed a deal with HBO. Gotta love that. (Though Perelman most likely won't).
In the pilot, which was steered by Ann Blanchard (one of the forces behind FWW's own Hot Flashes), Barkin stars as a woman who struggles to find her sea legs after being tossed and turned through her divorce. Not only does she find new horizons but a new love too — and, yup — he's a young hunk.
Shauna Cross is writing the pilot and describes Barkin's character as someone who is "in her early 50s whose life explodes suddenly. Her nerve and life experience allows her to tell the world to go screw itself, and they love her for it."
This is not the first time where reality intersects with drama or where drama is created by a divorce. Ask any woman who's gone through a divorce, and they could provide a season of material.
Barkin famously reclaimed her independence from the chains of a controlling, rich husband by selling off the lavish jewels given to her while in her mogul marriage at a public Sotheby's auction. She collected $20 million along with lots of applause.
Instead of having an amicable divorce, which Barkin would have embraced, Perelman tossed her and her children out of their Upper East Side townhouse after serving her with divorce papers in 2006. Not nice.
With no respect for their history or a partner's feelings, any spouse who treats their former love this way will get burned. When you are breaking up, you are simultaneously rebuilding a new family format, and one must refocus the lens on the long term and not short term results. Because now, a lens is being focused on Barkin's divorce and Perelman will have no control on the edits.
Yes ladies, success can be the best revenge.