With one of the biggest financial scandals of all time linked to the funding of its production, The Wolf of Wall Street has come back into the public eye. As the trial against former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is proceeding in court, another part of the investigation into Red Granite’s alleged impropriety has proceeded, because Malaysia has been given several million dollars back from its raided 1MDB fund.
The United States government has returned $57 million to the Malaysian government, thanks to production company Red Granite paying $60 million in a recent settlement. The gap in funds returned, amounting to around $3 million, was due to the FBI and Department of Justice recovering funds for their investigative efforts.
While that’s a drop in the bucket when compared to the $4.5 billion that was taken from Malaysia’s 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund, it’s a start to recovering the money that was funneled into Najib Razak’s high living lifestyle, which included funding fancy parties, large ticket purchases of artwork and luxury properties.
Razak also invested in the funding of films like The Wolf of Wall Street, Dumb and Dumber To and Daddy’s Home. Najib Razak was able to do so, courtesy of his step son Riza Aziz, who was one of the founders of the Red Granite company. The scandal was so huge that it's taken almost five years to work through the legal proceedings, and now it feels like justice is finally starting to be served.
The Hollywood Reporter also mentioned in its reporting on this recent development that $322 million has been recovered so far, with another $139 million in the process of being returned back to Malaysia’s government. While it didn’t take too long after the production of The Wolf of Wall Street and Dumb and Dumber To to start the investigation into Red Granite’s financing practices, we’re now finally seeing the concrete results of those efforts being paid back to the people of Malaysia.
Tommy Thomas, Malaysia’s attorney general, is confident that continuing efforts to recover the improperly channeled 1MDB funds will yield more payouts into the country’s investment fund. But for the time being, the $322 million recovered is the start of those promised recoveries.
Even Jordan Belfort himself couldn’t help but feel that The Wolf of Wall Street was being made with illicitly-obtained money, and if that’s not a sign of this entire enterprise being worth the effort, then we don’t know what is. Naturally, we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for any further developments in terms of the 1MDB funds being returned, and should any other updates come through on the matter, we’ll report back with the findings here at CinemaBlend.
The Wolf of Wall Street is currently available on home video and streaming platforms.