The Daily Beast brings up a good point today about the phenomenon that is “Eat, Pray, Love.” Writer Danielle Friedman asks, “What’s it like to be the guy whose heartbreak launched a multi-million-dollar feel-good franchise?” She tracked down Michael Cooper, Elizabeth Gilbert’s ex-husband, and discovered that he is now a public interest law scholar at the Georgetown University Law Center. He’s also remarried, to a Canadian diplomat, and has two young sons. However, he wasn’t interested in commenting on the movie, the book, or Elizabeth Gilbert in general.
Which is interesting, because last year he was contracted to write a rebuttal book.Hyperion was set to publish the book, Displaced, a “memoir of one man’s journey to reconnect with his values and reconstruct his life in the wake of an unexpected and devastating divorce … offering an intimate look at the end of his relationship with [Gilbert], and his own search for purpose as he journeys through Kosovo, Mongolia, Iran, Iraq, and other developing countries.”
The book changed titles once (to The Husband: One Man’s Story of Moving In, Moving Out, and Moving On). And then it was canceled about six months ago. Cooper told the NY Post, “I set out to write about how, in the wake of a devastating and unexpected divorce, I slowly rebuilt my life by redoubling my already decades-long commitment to humanitarian relief and human rights work,” he said. “In the end, it seemed to me that Hyperion hoped to push the book in a more controversial direction—something I was unwilling to do.”
How totally classy of him. Hey, at least he wasn’t the one who dreamed up the man’s version of the best-selling book, Drink Play F@#k.