Martin Scorsese’s interpretation of Jordan Belfort’s memoir, “The Wolf of Wall Street,” may seem like a wild exaggeration of the 26-year-old millionaire’s life, though the truth is that even the three-hour movie does not come close to capturing all of the unimaginable events that made up Belfort’s life.
At times, the film makes “The Hangover” look like nothing more than a high school party.
As one of the most successful stockbroker con-artists of the 1990s, Jordan Belfort’s memoirs display the “profit-over-all” culture of Wall Street – portraying the lifestyle in all of its “depraved glory.” Here are the 20 craziest facts about Jordan Belfort’s actual life and career.
1. Belfort was earning $50 million a year, once reportedly making $12 million in three minutes.
2. He once generated a $700,000 hotel bill.
3. One office junior agreed to have her hair shaved off on the trading floor in return for $5,000 for a breast job.
4. Belfort’s drug of choice was Quaaludes.
5. He confessed to making love to his wife on $3 million in $10,000 stacks of notes
6. He once landed his helicopter on his back lawn, flying with just one eye open because he was so stoned he had double vision.
7. He sank his 167ft motor yacht, complete with seaplane and helicopter, after overruling the captain and taking it into a Mediterranean storm.
8. Inside his Manhattan office, Belfort and his co-workers took turns tossing midgets at a bulls-eye.
9. He used his wife’s sweet old aunt as a mule, helping him smuggle money out of the US.
10. He used his first Wall Street Bonus to buy a white Ferrari because Don Johnson had one.
11. He woke up his secretary at 4 am because he was in London and ran out of drugs. An emergency supply was immediately sent out on Concorde.
12. He kicked his wife down a set of stairs in front of their young daughter, and then drove his car through his garage door with the little girl unbuckled in the front seat.
13. He claims to have ingested enough drugs to “sedate Guatemala.”
14. While facing up to three decades in prison, he snitched — becoming a government witness supplying information against his co-workers.
15. He helped take Steve Madden, one of today’s most iconic fashion companies, public.
16. He woke up from a drug-filled bender with the police at his door — they arrested him for causing seven different accidents that he had no recollection of.
17. Forbes once referred to him as “a twisted version of Robin Hood, who robs from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers.”
18. He often charged prostitutes to his company card, even writing them off on his taxes.
19. Perhaps the reason Belfort still seems to have such fond memories of the days he was flying high and mighty with other people’s money is that he only had to serve 22 months in jail for stealing over $110 million.
20. After spending a week in solitary confinement, he was put into a low security work camp with tennis courts, a library and plenty of physical activities to keep him busy.
Scorsese’s adaptation of Belfort’s memoirs remains ethically opposed to the lifestyles it portrays, inviting viewers to laugh both with and at its protagonists. In the film, Scorsese depicts the shallow nature of their obsessions in order to make them a prime mockery of the time period that these men helped to define.
The exceptional screenplay and performances, in conjunction with the intrigue provided by the true story itself make for a long story of debauchery that will have your eyes glued in front of you for three of the shortest hours of your life.
Photo credit: The Wolf Of Wall St