Milder ‘Trainspotting’ nears Off B’way depot

Gibson tempers stage version

NEW YORK — While heroin chic may now be passe, Columbia Artist Management and producer Arielle Tepper are betting that “Trainspotting” isn’t. The two have joined forces to bring the stage adaptation of the novel by Irvine Welsh to Off Broadway by late October or early November.

The 1993 novel, later a play in London and a hit arthouse pic, centers on a collection of episodes in the lives of a part-time heroin fiend and his four psychotic junkie pals in Edinburgh.

Harry Gibson, who wrote the London stage adaptation that will be used here, will also helm this production.

The 1996 pic from the novel, which reportedly had a budget of only $3 million, took more than $17 million in the U.S. (through Miramax) and $18.9 million in the U.K. (through Polygram).

The film “Trainspotting” made headlines for its hyperrealistic and often graphic images of needles jammed in arms, toilets entered head-first and bodily fluids as culinary ingredients.

That’s something that Tepper maintains will not be a part of the New York production.

“It’s very different from the film, and doesn’t include the graphic stuff,” Tepper said, adding, “That’s my marketing challenge: Getting people to realize that it’s everything they liked about the film.”

The film also was criticized for the thick Scottish accents that sometimes made it hard to comprehend. Tepper says American actors will be used, and will employ milder Scottish accents.

Aldo Scrofani of CAMI was in Scotland and was unavailable for comment, but a person at CAMI con-firmed that Helen Hayes Theater staff general manager Paul Morer will handle G.M. chores.

An Off Broadway house has not yet been secured, but Tepper is optimistic that a deal can be reached relatively soon.

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