Jeremy Piven

Scott Kirkland/

Superinside Speed the Plow sources claim exclusively to the Awful Truth that Jeremy Piven's premature evacuation from the Broadway show had nada to do with overeating sushi.

"He was fired," says an integral player in the David Mamet play, about the banal evils of Hollywood. Yep, according to our pivotal insider, J.P. got booted for diva-like behavior. Like what? Like showing up two minutes before showtime, being a general d-bag toward the cast and crew and sending his understudy on if he didn't like the size of the audience.

Most of those seats were sold, too, if that gives ya any indication of the Piv's ego. Even though the Entourage star's reps vehemently deny it, we're assured the Pivster finally got his contract ripped up. Not that he minded much.

"He wanted out of his contract for about a month—he was trying to get out of it," says another major Plow player, claiming the Emmy-winner was "disappointed" doin' it live night after night. The mercury poisoning excuse was a way out to save face. Thought that one smelled like it was fresh from the sea.

We contacted both reps for the play (still waiting for comment from the producers), as well as Jeremy's spokesperson, who said all our info was "entirely inaccurate." When we relayed that our sources were firsthand eyewitnesses from the play, it made no difference.

"This show has been his No. 1 priority since he started rehearsals," responded the Piven rep. She added, "Jeremy was not fired from the show," and she also defended her client's superhigh mercury levels, offering us his doctor's number for verification. (We left word and are awaiting a callback.)

Our Speed know-it-alls also had a prescription for the oft-pissy Piven: "Don't expect to see him welcomed back on Broadway ever again."

However, the Piv can prolly safely return to his fave sushi restaurants unscathed. Damn, did we just get more respect for Katie Holmes? Almost three months on B'way and not a peep out of her!

—Additional reporting by Becky Bain

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