Argento-helmed adaptation preems in Gotham

NEW YORK — Palm Pictures decided to have fun with the JT Leroy scandal at the distrib’s preem for “The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things” Feb. 28. A cadre of Leroy look-alikes hit the lighted dance floor at the Hudson Hotel bar, while helmer Asia Argento worked the wheels of steel.

Some journos even began frantically interviewing the impostors.

Laura Albert — the woman who created the Leroy character, and often posed in public as the lit lion’s confidante Speedy — was supposed to be on hand, but couldn’t kick the rock star lifestyle, according to Palm brass, even after the jig was up.

“(Laura) had lots of requirements that were above and beyond what Palm was willing to do,” said theatrical distribution head Andy Robbins.

Bones of contention included how many nights Albert would be put up, where she was willing to stay, per diem costs and who would handle her hair and makeup.

Robbins said Palm couldn’t foot Albert’s bill “knowing the history of what she had asked for, and charges she had racked up for room service” when attending previous events.

Either way, preemgoers didn’t seem to miss the author as Argento regaled the gathering with tales of her sexual romps with the woman who impersonated Leroy, Savannah Knoop.

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