The Los Angeles Times had this angle today, but screenwriter/columnist Bruce Feirstein said it first and funnier on “As anyone who’s ever worked in Hollywood will tell you, the basic social contract (“Local Law #1”) is that nobody ever tells the truth, about anything…So after decades of polite lies, I can’t help but wonder if my friend Sumner is going to start a trend here. Consider the following:

“Oldspeak: ‘She was suffering from exhaustion.’
“Newspeak: ‘She’s a drug-addled maniac.’

“Oldspeak: ‘He left the project because of creative differences.’
“Newspeak: ‘He demanded final cut, his ego was out of control, and he refused to meet the budget.’

“Oldspeak: ‘He decided that in order to best serve his clients, he’s leaving the agency to set up a management company.’
“Newspeak: ‘He was charging hookers and private jets to Vegas to the agency, so we booted him.’

“Oldspeak: ‘He’s leaving the studio to pursue his original dream, which was making movies.’
“Newspeak: ‘He couldn’t pick a winner if Steven Spielberg himself came in and pitched Jaws. So we threw his ass out of here.’

“Oldspeak: ‘We love the pitch, but we have something just like it in development.’
“Newspeak: ‘You’re an overpriced hack.’

“Oldspeak: ‘You were terrific in the audition, but they decided to go in a different direction.’
“Newspeak: ‘You have no talent. But in the meantime, I’ll have the swordfish, grilled, no butter, with a small salad, and the dressing on the side.’

“Oldspeak: ‘They loved your take, but they’ve decided to go with somebody else.’
“Newspeak: ‘You’re 57, you haven’t directed a hit film in ten years, and there’s an MTV director they can control who offered to do it for half the price. And by the way, they also said you’re an overpriced hack who’s got no talent.’

“Oldspeak: ‘I respect my competitors.’
“Newspeak: ‘You know that sound – that ‘thud-thud’ you hear when you drive over the speed bumps in the studio parking lot? Well, every morning, when I hit them, I dream that it’s Tom Rothman.’