New York Times reporter Sharon Waxman is said to be an admirer of I Heart Huckabees writer-director David O. Russell, but her portrait of him in Sunday’s Arts and Leisure section (9.19) didn’t do him any favors. A diary-like observation of what Russell went through during the Huckabees shoot, Waxman’s piece describes a guy who’s a little bit nuts, living on sheer moment-to-moment impulse and, the reader is led to believe, barely in control of himself. (The Chris Nolan headlock story alone will drive this impression home.) For what it’s worth, this is not the David O. Russell I’ve heard about for years and come to know very slightly. The view expressed during a luncheon for talent/press at the Sideways junket in Santa Barbara this morning is that Waxman’s piece was a friendly sandbagging.