Paramount's The Wolf of Wall Street opened in theaters on Christmas Day last week, giving moviegoers a glimpse into the affluent, drug-addled lifestyle of Jordan Belfort, who pilfered hundreds of millions of dollars from his clients through his fraudulent brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont. After his conviction in 2003, Jordan Belfort was ordered to pay back $110 million to his victims in restitution payments, $11.6 million of which he has already paid.
Jordan Belfort, who also has a cameo appearance at the end of the movie, released a statement through his Facebook page where he revealed that all of the profits he received through his book and movie deals are going back to his victims.
"As you can imagine, I am very busy right now, but I owe this post to all my loyal friends and fans who have supported me since the beginning: For the record, I am not turning over 50% of the profits of the books and the movie, which was what the government had wanted me to do. Instead, I insisted on turning over 100% of the profits of both books and the movie, which is to say, I am not making a single dime on any of this. This should amount to countless millions of dollars and hopefully be more than enough to pay back anyone who is still out there. I thought this was already public information, as I have already said it publicly numerous times, but apparently there is so much NOISE right now that it has gotten lost in the shuffle. So, again, for the record: I am not making any royalties off the film or the books, and I am totally content with that. My income comes from new life, which is far better than my old one. (Although I will admit the Quaaludes were kind of fun, at least in the beginning. Thankfully, they're illegal! and impossible to find!)"
Leonardo DiCaprio portrayed Jordan Belfort in the film, which was directed by Martin Scorsese and took in $18.5 million during its opening weekend. It isn't known how much Jordan Belfort made off his book and movie deals, but it seems he still has a long way to go before all of his victims are paid back.
In related news, Jordan Belfort might have an additional revenue stream to help with those restitution payments, with the author currently pitching a new reality TV series from Electus.
Although the show is still in early stages of development, it will follow the 51-year-old Jordan Belfort as he steps in to help others who have hit rock-bottom, guiding them on a path to redemption using his unique set of business skills. Electus CEO Chris Grant tracked down Jordan Belfort after he served his 28-month prison term, to develop the pitch.
Here's what Chris Grant had to say about the project in a brief statement.
"I knew without even seeing a picture of him that he could be a talent both behind and in front of the camera."
There is already a high level of interest in the project at several networks, with some executives describing Jordan Belfort, who is now a successful motivational speaker based out of Manhattan Beach, California, as "TV gold."