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jordan belfort naomi yacht

How Jordan Belfort's 37m superyacht Nadine sank off the coast of Sardinia

Related articles.

Coco Chanel was famously outspoken on many things, but yachting, in particular, attracted her ire. “As soon as you set foot on a yacht you belong to some man, not to yourself, and you die of boredom,” she was once quoted as saying.

Her solution was to buy her own yacht. A 37m with a steel hull, built by the Dutch yard Witsen & Vis of Alkmaar. The yacht passed through many hands, finally ending up belonging to the Wolf of Wall Street, Jordan Belfort, on whose watch she foundered and sank in 1996.

The yacht was originally built for a Frenchman under the name Mathilde , but he backed out and she caught Chanel’s eye instead. With a narrow beam, a high bow and the long, low superstructure typical of Dutch yachts of her era, she was certainly a beautiful boat. But she was also well equipped, with five staterooms in dark teak panelling, magnificent dining facilities, room for big tenders and, later, a helipad. A frequent sight along the Florida coast, she caught the eye of a young skipper called Mark Elliott.

“In those days, she was the biggest yacht on the East Coast,” he remembers. “Nobody had ever seen anything like it. I needed a wrench once and went up to the boat - Captain Norm Dahl was really friendly.” He didn’t know it then, but Elliott was destined to become the skipper of the boat himself and was at the helm when the storm of the century took her to the bottom off Sardinia.

Coco Chanel died in 1971 and sometime thereafter the yacht was renamed Jan Pamela under the new ownership of Melvin Lane Powers. He was a flamboyant Houston real estate developer, fond of crocodile skin cowboy boots and acquitted of murder in a trial that gripped the nation.

Powers sent Jan Pamela to Merrill Stevens yard in Miami, where a mammoth seven-metre section was added amidships. “We made templates for the boat where we were going to cut her in half, then she went out for another charter season,” remembers Whit Kirtland, son of the yard owner. “When the boat came back in, we cut it just forward of the engine room, rolled the two sections apart and welded it in.”

He remembers how the sun’s heat made the bare and painted metal expand at different rates. “You had to weld during certain time periods – early in the morning or late at night,” says Kirtland.

The result of the extension was a huge new seven-metre full-beam master stateroom, an extra salon and one further cabin – pushing the charter capacity to seven staterooms. During this refit, the boat’s colour was also changed from white to taupe. “No one had really done it before and it was gorgeous,” says Elliott. By 1983, Powers was bankrupt and the yacht was sold on again. She next shows up named Edgewater .

Elliott’s chance came in 1989. He was working for the established yacht owner Bernie Little, who ran a hugely profitable distribution business for Bud brewer Anheuser-Busch. “Bernie Little had always wanted to own the boat,” Elliott says. “He loved it. He bought it sight unseen – and I started a huge restoration programme, including another extension to put three metres in the cockpit.”

It was a massive task, undertaken at Miami Ship. “We pulled out all the windows, re-chromed everything, repainted – brought it back to life,” says Elliott. They also cut out old twin diesels from GM and replaced them with bigger CAT engines, doubling her horsepower to 800. “Repowered, she could cruise at up to 20 knots. She was long and skinny, like a destroyer.”

A smart hydraulic feature was also brought to life for the first time. Under two of the sofas in the main stateroom were hidden 3.6m x 1.2m glass panels giving a view of the sea under the boat. At the push of a button, the sofas lifted up and mirrors above allowed you to gaze at the seabed – from the actual bed.

Now called Big Eagle , like all of Little’s boats, she was a charter hit and her top client was a certain New York financier named Jordan Belfort. He fell in love with her and begged Little to sell to him. But he needed to secure financing, and in 1995, Little agreed to hold a note on the boat for a year if Mark Elliott stayed on as skipper.

With the boat rechristened Nadine after his wife, Belfort set about another round of refit work, restyling the interior with vintage deco and lots of mirrors, extending the upper deck this time, and fitting a crane capable of raising and stowing the Turbine Seawind seaplane.

Nadine also carried a helicopter, a 10m Intrepid tender, two 6m dinghies on the bow, four motorbikes, six jetskis, state-of-the-art dive gear. “You pretty much needed an air traffic controller when all these things were in the water,” says Elliott.

Belfort’s partying was legendary and Elliott clearly saw eye-watering things on board, but as far as he was concerned, he was there to safeguard the boat. “When Jordan Belfort became the owner, he could do whatever he wanted. I was there to protect the note,” says Elliott. “He is a brilliant mind and a lovely person. It was just when he was in his party mode, he was out of control.”

Nadine and her huge cohort of toys and vehicles plied all the usual yachting haunts on both sides of the Atlantic. But Belfort’s love story was to be short-lived. Disaster struck with the boss and guests on board during an 85-mile crossing between Civitavecchia in Italy and Calle de Volpe on Sardinia.

What was forecast to be a 20-knot blow and moderate seas degenerated into a violent 70-knot storm with crests towering above 10.6m, according to Elliott. Wave after wave pounded the superstructure, stoving in hatches and windows so that water poured below and made the boat sluggish. By a miracle the engine room remained dry and they could maintain steerage way, motoring slowly through the black of the night as rescue attempt after rescue attempt was called off.

Nadine eventually sank at dawn in over 1000m of water just 20 miles from the coast of Sardinia. Everyone had been taken off by helicopter, and there was no loss of life. Captain Mark Elliott was roundly congratulated for his handling of the incident. “The insurance paid immediately because it was the storm of the century,” he says. “I took the whole crew but one with me to [Little’s next boat] Star Ship . That was my way to come back.”

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Everything The Wolf Of Wall Street Doesn't Tell You About The True Story

Jordan Belfort laughing

Martin Scorsese's film "The Wolf of Wall Street" is an over-the-top celebration of greed and excess, inspired by the memoir of the notorious stockbroker Jordan Belfort, who is played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the film. It tell of the rise of Jordan Belfort from a low-level assistant at L. F. Rothschild to a Long Island penny stock pusher, as well as Belfort's dramatic fall from filthy rich CEO of Stratton Oakmont to a stint in federal prison for stock fraud and money laundering.

Despite being ostensibly based on a true story, many question the veracity of the film because of how absolutely outlandishness of Belfort's claims, and how outrageous the antics at Stratton Oakmont are. Scorsese obviously recognized Belfort is an unreliable narrator with a penchant for exaggeration. In the film, Belfort breaks the fourth wall, addressing the camera and the audience directly. This was a strategic choice by the screenwriter and director. Screenwriter Terence Winter told Esquire , "Jordan is talking directly to you. You are being sold the Jordan Belfort story by Jordan Belfort, and he is a very unreliable narrator. That's very much by design."

Despite how unlikely this story is, most of what transpires in the film actually happened. Winter added, "I assumed he must've been embellishing. But then I did some research, and I talked to the FBI agent who arrested him, who had been tracking Jordan for ten years. And he told me, 'It's all true. Every single thing in his memoir, every insane coincidence and over-the-top perk, it all happened.'" 

That said, this film is Belfort's truth, not necessarily the definitive truth. Keep reading if you want to learn everything "The Wolf of Wall Street" doesn't tell you about the true story of Jordan Belfort's meteoric rise and fall.

Belfort's wives' names were changed for the film

Although their real-life counterparts are obvious, the names of Jordan Belfort's ex-wives were changed in the film, giving the filmmaker creative license with the characters. Belfort's first-wife in the film is Teresa Petrillo (Cristin Milioti), but her real-life counterpart is Denise Lombardo. Denise met Belfort in high school, and the childhood sweethearts married in 1985 after Denise graduated from college. Belfort founded Stratton Oakmont while married to Denise, and they divorced after she found out about his affair in 1991 (per The U.S. Sun ). After their divorce, Denise led a low-profile life, staying out of the public eye.

Belfort's second-wife in the film is Naomi Lapaglia (Margot Robbie). Naomi's real-life counterpart is Nadine Macaluso. Like Naomi, Nadine was a model and met Belfort at a party before they married in 1991. Nadine and Belfort had two children together and separated in 1998 as depicted in the film (per the U.S. Sun). Nadine got a Ph.D, becoming a marriage and family therapist. She lives in California with her second husband (per Daily Mail TV ).

Margot Robbie , who played Naomi in the film, met Nadine while preparing for her role. Robbie told IndieWire meeting Nadine helped her understand her character's motivations, saying, "I could do or say any horrible thing and know that my character's motivation was out of protection for her child. Whether or not the audience sees my side of events is another matter, but just to know my motivation can give me an authentic performance." She added how strong Nadine is, saying, "She's has to be, to have put up with Jordan and his shenanigans."

The original crew Belfort recruited from friends are composite characters

Although Belfort recruited the original crew for his Long Island brokerage firm from a group of friends; Alden "Sea Otter" Kupferberg (Henry Zebrowski), Robbie "Pinhead" Feinberg (Brian Sacca), Chester Ming (Kenneth Choi), and Nicky "Rugrat" Koskoff (PJ Byrne) are composite characters with fictitious names. These characters are an amalgamation of numerous people who worked at Stratton Oakmont and do not represent actual people.

This didn't stop Andrew Greene, a board member of Stratton Oakmont, from filing a defamation suit against the film's production company. He was offended by the depiction of "Rugrat" in the film, saying the character damaged his reputation. He called the character a "criminal, drug user, degenerate, depraved and devoid of any morals or ethics" (per The Guardian ).

In 2018, Greene lost his suit . In 2020, an appellate court threw the suit out, stating that the filmmakers, by creating composite characters and fictitious names, "took appropriate steps to ensure that no one would be defamed by the Film," (per the Hollywood Reporter ). The filmmaker included the hijinks of the employees at Stratton Oakmont in the film to illustrate the raucous corporate culture of the brokerage firm, rather than defame former employees.

Donnie Azoff doesn't exist, his real-life counterpart is Danny Porush

Jonah Hill 's character Donnie Azoff in "The Wolf of Wall Street" doesn't exist. He is a composite character created to avoid defaming anyone while making the film. To anyone who is familiar with Jordan Belfort and Stratton Oakmont's story, it's obvious Danny Porush is Azoff's real-life counterpart. Porush disputes the veracity of both Belfort's memoir and the film, telling Mother Jones , "The book ... is a distant relative of the truth, and the film is a distant relative of the book." Porush admits to swallowing the goldfish, but under different circumstances than depicted in the film.

As reported by Mother Jones, Porush was Belfort's friend and business partner between 1988 and 1996. Like Belfort, he cooperated with authorities, ultimately serving 39 months in prison for his securities and financial crimes at Stratton Oakmont. Porush disputes the throwing of dwarves, insists there were never animals in Stratton Oakmont — other than the goldfish he ate — but admits to the wild parties and taking part in the depravity and excesses encouraged at the brokerage firm, saying "Stratton was like a fraternity."

Porush told Mother Jones, "My main complaint [regarding the memoir] besides his inaccuracy was his using my real name," something that was remedied when the filmmakers created the composite character of Donnie Azoff. Ultimately, Porush doesn't seem to hold a grudge despite his grievances with the inaccuracies saying, "Hey, it's Hollywood ... I know they want to make a movie that sells. And Jordan wrote whatever he could to make the book sell."

Danny Porush's wife introduced Jordan Belfort to her husband

In "The Wolf of Wall Street," Donnie Azoff (Danny Porush's fictional counterpart) approaches Belfort at a restaurant about what he does for a living, after seeing Belfort's Jaguar in the parking lot. In reality, Belfort met his future business partner, Danny Porush, through Danny's wife Nancy.

Porush and Nancy lived in the same building in Queens where Belfort lived with his first wife Denise, as Nancy told Doree Lewak with The New York Post in 2013 shortly before "The Wolf of Wall Street" came out. Nancy explained how she took the same bus into the city for work as Belfort, saying, "the commute to the city each day was hard because I became pregnant right away. There was a nice boy from our building on the same bus who always gave up his seat for me. His name was Jordan Belfort, and he worked in finance ... I pushed Danny to talk to Jordan ... After just one conversation, Danny came back and announced he was taking the Series 7 exam to get his stockbroker's license."

In the New York Post article, Nancy detailed how her husband changed once he began working with Belfort and making serious cash, saying, "Up until then, Danny never seemed to care about money ... I saw him morph from a nice wholesome guy into showy narcissist whom I hardly recognized anymore." After being arrested for securities fraud, Porush left Nancy for another woman. They are now divorced, and he lives in Florida with his second wife. We can't help wondering if Nancy ever regrets introducing her ex-husband to Belfort.

Belfort's destroyed yacht once belonged to Coco Chanel

Jordan Belfort bought a yacht and named it after his second wife. In the film, the boat is named Naomi after the character played by Margot Robbie, but in real life the boat was called the Nadine . True to the film, Belfort insisted his boat's captain take the yacht into choppy waters, where the boat happened upon powerful but unpredictable mistrals, leading to the Nadine sinking into the Mediterranean Sea in an event known as Mayday In The Med . Belfort, his guests and crew, were rescued by the Italian coast guard.

What the film doesn't tell you is that Belfort's yacht had an interesting past. Belfort's vintage yacht once belonged to none other than the famous French fashion designer Coco Chanel. Chanel is known for her outspoken nature and is associated with quite a few fiercely female quotes. Chanel is quoted as saying , "As soon as you set foot on a yacht, you belong to some man, not to yourself, and you die of boredom." Rather than avoid luxury yachts all together, Chanel made the boss move of buying her own in 1961, naming her the Matilda (per Boss Hunting ).

As bizarre as this interlude of the film was, it actually happened, with one major difference. In an interview with The Room Live , Belfort explained how the group waiting to be rescued had to push the helicopter off of the boat to make room for a rescue team to lower down onto the yacht. In the film, the waves knock the helicopter off of the yacht. Belfort also explains that although his private jet also crashed, it was 10 days after the yacht sunk, not at the same time, as it was depicted in the film for dramatic effect.

Steve Madden spent time in prison for stock fraud

Although they don't talk about it in the movie, Steve Madden also went to prison for stock fraud and money laundering along with Jordan Belfort and Danny Porush. The New York Times reported in 2002 that Madden "was arrested in 2000 as a result of an investigation of a scheme to manipulate 23 initial public stock offerings underwritten by the companies Stratton Oakmont and Monroe Parker Securities ... It included the initial public stock offering of his own company in 1993."

True to the film, Danny Porush, Azoff's real-life counterpart, really was childhood friends with Steve Madden. Like Belfort and Porush, Madden loved debauchery and Quaaludes, so much so he didn't finish college because of how much he was partying. Although Madden wrote about his wild days in his memoir, his time partying with the Stratton Oakmont "fraternity" was not included in the film. Stratton Oakmont took Madden's company public, making him instantly rich ( per The New York Post ).

As reported by the New York Post, Madden wrote about this period of his life in his memoir "The Cobbler: How I Disrupted an Industry, Fell from Grace & Came Back Stronger Than Ever." In his book, Madden wrote, "Jordan was like no one else I have ever met before or since. He became one of the most influential people in my life ... I was pumping and dumping [stocks] right alongside them." Madden wound up serving 31 months for his financial crimes and his involvement with Stratton Oakmont's schemes. Unlike Porush and Belfort, Madden could continue working at his company after being released from prison.

Belfort was ordered to pay restitution to his victims

When Belfort was convicted of money laundering and stock fraud in 2003 for Stratton Oakmont's "pump and dump" schemes, he was sentenced to four years in prison and ordered to pay over $110.4 million in restitution (per Crime Museum ). Belfort only served 22 months for his crimes and a judge ordered him to pay half of his income once he was released from prison.

In 2013, just after the film was released, CNN reported Belfort had only contributed a little over $11 million to the fund for victims, much obtained from confiscated possessions. At the time the film came out, Belfort allegedly stated he would hand over all of his royalties from the film and the book. But in 2018, Fortune Magazine reported government officials claimed Belfort still owed $97 million, meaning that over the previous 5 years, Belfort only contributed an additional $2 million dollars to the victims' fund. $2 million dollars is more than most of us will ever see, but Belfort is still making good money as a motivational speaker.

As reported by Fortune Magazine, there is a disagreement between Belfort's attorneys and prosecutors over what income can be garnished for restitution. Belfort reportedly earned around $9 million dollars between 2013 and 2015, but neglected to pay half of those earnings to the victims' fund. Although Belfort claims he will feel better after he has paid the money back, he doesn't seem to be fulfilling his end of the court order. Belfort obviously still enjoys a life of luxury and it is hard to reconcile his claims of being reformed with his reluctance to pay the restitution to his victims. In her New York Post article Nancy Porush reminded us, "Greed is not good — it's ugly."

Tommy Chong was Belfort's cellmate in prison

"The Wolf of Wall Street" ends with Jordan Belfort in a cushy white-collar prison with tennis courts, but the film didn't tell us who Belfort's cellmate was. Belfort and Tommy Chong of the comedy duo "Cheech & Chong" were cellmates before Chong was released. In 2014, Belfort spoke to Stephen Galloway with The Hollywood Reporter about his time in prison. He explained, "[Chong] was in the process of writing his book. We used to tell each other stories at night, and I had him rolling hysterically on the floor. The third night he goes, 'You've got to write a book.' So I started writing, and I knew it was bad. It was terrible. I was about to call it quits and then I went into the prison library and stumbled upon 'The Bonfire of the Vanities' by Tom Wolfe, and I was like, 'That's how I want to write!'"

In 2014 Chong spoke with Adrian Lee at Maclean's about how he met Belfort in prison and giving Belfort feed back on his pages, saying "After a while he showed me what he had written, and it was the only time I had critiqued someone really heavy — usually when someone writes something, you say, 'Oh yeah, that's great, keep going.' But I knew instinctively he had a lot more to offer than what he showed me ... I told him ... 'No, you've got to write those stories you've been telling me at night. Your real life is much more exciting than any kind of imaginary story you could come up with.'"

Stratton Oakmont was never on Wall Street

Although the memoir and film are titled "The Wolf of Wall Street," Jordan Belfort only worked on Wall Street for several months in 1987 at L. F. Rothschild. Black Monday put an end to his days at a Manhattan based brokerage firm. As we see in the film, it was on Long Island that Belfort got a job at the Investor's Center selling penny stocks from the pink sheets and found his calling: his get-rich-quick scheme, selling nearly worthless stocks for a 50 percent commission to people who couldn't afford to lose the money (per NY Times ).

Belfort soon went out on his own, founding Stratton Oakmont with Danny Porush, where they began targeting rich investors using a persuasive script and "pump and dump" tactics — making Belfort, Porush and their brokers rich, while leaving their clients broke. As reported by the Washington Post in 1996, Stratton Oakmont was disciplined for securities violations as early as 1989, and continued to be disciplined almost annually.

Jimmy So with The Daily Beast, maintains, "The problem with 'The Wolf of Wall Street' is that the self-fashioned wolf was nowhere near the real Wall Street." The memoir and film made the brokerage firm seem like a much bigger deal than they really were, despite the financial ruin they left in their wake. Stratton Oakmont's offices were on Long Island, not Wall Street.

Jordan Belfort was never called 'The Wolf of Wall Street'

Scorsese's film makes it seem like Forbes gave Jordan Belfort the nickname, "The Wolf of Wall Street" when they published a takedown about Stratton Oakmont's questionable business practices. Forbes wrote an article about Stratton Oakmont's dirty deeds in 1991, but the article did not call Belfort "the wolf of wall street." In 2013, Forbes revisited Roula Khalaf's original article, where she called Belfort a "twisted Robin Hood who takes from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers." 

Danny Porush, Belfort's former partner and one-time friend, told Mother Jones  that nobody at the firm ever used the "wolf" moniker. As reported by CNN , Belfort came up with the nickname himself for his memoir. As Porush told Mother Jones, Belfort's "greatest gift was always that of a self-promoter." But as Joe Nocera with the NY Times said, "who would ever buy a ticket to a movie called 'The Wolf of Long Island'?"

Belfort had a head-on collision while driving under the influence of Quaaludes

When the real Jordan Belfort crashed his car while on Quaaludes, he was in a Mercedes Benz rather than a Lamborghini, and someone was actually injured. Belfort had a head-on collision while driving home from the country club where he used the pay phone, sending the woman he collided with to the hospital (per The Daily Beast ). None of Belfort's crimes are victimless.

This type of discrepancy is central to the complaints about both Belfort's memoir and the film. Although Belfort says he regrets his crimes, he is too busy boasting about the parties, the riches, the drugs, and the sex to sound like he regrets anything except getting caught. Belfort's memoir and the film it inspired might seem like a celebration of greed and excess, but they are also a depiction of the ostentatious behavior that eventually drew the attention of the authorities.

Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street" might not tell you everything about the true story, but what it does is reveal how audiences love watching someone else's destructive behavior. We get all the thrills and none of the consequences. As screenwriter Terence Winter told Esquire, "I'd much rather watch somebody who isn't responsible, who makes all the wrong decisions and hangs out with the wrong people. That's more satisfying. We may live like saints, but when it comes to our fantasy life, everybody's got a little larceny in their soul."

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Jordan Belfort Yacht: The True Story and The Wolf of Wall Street Version

The true Jordan Belfort yacht story is as strange and unbelievable as the hit movie The Wolf of Wall Street depicts it to be. There are several insider stories behind the sinking of the mighty yacht that are not widely known but are quite interesting and different from the reel version in several ways.

Nadine yacht model

What happened to the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine?

As the movie, The Wolf of Wall Street shows, the superyacht Nadine sank close to the coast of Sardinia in 1997 while battling what many calls “the storm of the century”. Jordan Belfort narrates the event in detail in the memoir describing his life in the 90s, which is what the Martin Scorsese movie is about.

Before getting into the details of the sinking, it is worth noting that the 37m yacht had a long and interesting history. She carried renowned celebrities like Coco Chanel before reaching Jordan Belfort (played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie) and was one of the largest yachts in the East Coast’s waters.

While the yacht was initially manufactured for a French native and given the name Matilda, he backed out of the deal. This led Coco Chanel to buy the beautiful yacht with the low superstructure that Dutch yachts are famous for.

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The yacht took on different names as it passed through famous hands, even those of the murder trial acquitted Melvin Lane Powers. Belfort named the yacht after his wife and renovated it with the capacity to carry a helicopter, 6 Jetskis, 4 motorbikes, and much more. Under Belfort’s ownership, the yacht witnessed a series of wild parties that were like unlimited glamour and fun in a package until disaster struck unexpectedly.

Jordan belfort yacht sailing

Did the yacht scene in The Wolf of Wall Street actually happen?

The Jordan Belfort yacht sinking scene in The Wolf of Wall Street was heavily inspired by a real-life event, though the movie did take some creative liberties. For one, the yacht was called Naomi in the reel version since the name of Belfort’s wife (played by Margot Robbie ) was changed in the movie. In reality, the yacht was named Nadine.

The movie further depicts Belfort’s helicopter getting thrown off the yacht by strong waves. In reality, the yacht’s crew went up to the deck and pushed off the helicopter so that Italian navy seals would have a space to land. The yacht’s itinerary was altered a bit by the movie’s director Martin Scorsese to add to the drama, though the power of the storm was scarily accurate.

Belfort admitted that the yacht’s captain Mark Elliot explicitly warned them not to sail to Sardinia on that fateful night. But according to the movie, there was a business opportunity in the city that Belfort could not bear to miss out on despite his wife’s protests.

Some sources claim that in reality, the passengers were simply eager to hit the golf course at Sardinia the next morning. They refused to pay heed to the captain’s warning and asked him to go through the storm, which eventually led to the famous Jordan Belfort yacht sinking incident. Therefore, unfortunately, if someone wants to have a yacht rental in Dubai or any other destination, they have missed their chance with this yacht.

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Interesting insights on the sinking as portrayed in the movie

The movie captures the fear and stress that each passenger felt when the yacht got caught up in the 70-knot storm. There is some hilarity when Belfort starts yelling for his drugs to avoid the horror of dying sober.

Several rescue attempts were made, but due to rising risks, each of them was called off. By some twist of luck, the yacht’s engine room remained mostly undamaged for a while, because of which they were able to make their way through the sea.

In the end, everyone survived the incident without any major injuries. At dawn, the Nadine made its way 1000m under the water only 20 miles away from Sardinia’s coast. Now, the movie’s audience gets to watch the Jordan Belfort yacht story unfold on the screen with a pinch of humor.

The Nadine’s captain Mark Elliot’s heroic actions did not go unnoticed. He was praised for leading all the passengers to safety, though he was able to get out of the yacht only 10 minutes before it sank. The captain also admitted that the insurance was granted immediately considering the ferocity of the storm. As for the yacht, many still wonder about the highly expensive equipment that had to be thrown into the water and is probably rusting away at the bottom of the sea.

The best features of the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine

jordan belfort yacht nadine sail

The 167 ft Nadine, as its former passengers claim, was a beautiful yacht. When owned by Coco Chanel under the name Matilda, the yacht had five staterooms, large dining areas, and a helipad. The interiors were furnished with dark teak paneling. Each new owner customized the yacht’s name and interiors based on their tastes.

Belfort decorated the Nadine lavishly with a variety of mirrors and set a vintage deco theme. He renovated the upper deck to fit a crane that was able to stow his Turbine Seawind seaplane. The yacht carried the best dive gear available in the market plus a variety of Belfort’s ‘toys’ such as his motorbikes and jetskis.

Which model was portrayed as the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine in the movie?

lady m yacht model

Martin Scorsese got the yacht Lady M to represent Nadine onscreen. While Nadine actually had a luxuriously vintage charm to it, Lady M is a modern vessel with contemporary features. Lady M was manufactured in 2022 by Intermarine Savannah, while Nadine was built in 1961 by Witsen & Wis. The 147 ft Lady M is currently worth $12 million and is similar to Benetti yachts in its glamorous design.

Jordan Belfort’s life today

The entrepreneur and speaker Jordan Belfort’s shenanigans are well-known thanks to his detailed memoir and the hit movie based on some parts of his life. He spent 2 years in prison and now, at 59 years of age, has a practically negative net worth. Yet, his extraordinary motivational speaking skills continue to attract and inspire people even today.

It is easy for anyone watching the movie to wonder if many of the incidents are exaggerated. But considering Belfort’s eccentric life, even the Nadine sinking incident remains another regular anecdote shared in the movie.

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Jordan Belfort's real ex-wife reveals what Margot Robbie scene Wolf of Wall Street actually got right

Jordan Belfort's real ex-wife reveals what Margot Robbie scene Wolf of Wall Street actually got right

It was quite the dramatic moment....

Daisy Phillipson

Daisy Phillipson

The Wolf of Wall Street's ex-wife has revealed the Margot Robbie scene that the film got right about their life. Take a look:

Dr Nadine Caridi, currently known as Nadine Macaluso, is the ex-wife of Jordan Belfort and was depicted as Naomi Lapaglia - aka 'The Duchess' - by Robbie in Martin Scorcese's hit movie.

Meanwhile, her former husband is portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio, with the plot following Belfort's rise and fall in a career defined by  drugs, women, and white collar crime .

Now, we know certain aspects of The Wolf of Wall Street aren't true to life, but that hasn't stopped people from making all kinds of assumptions about the pair.

In a bid to get her side of the story out there, Nadine has shared a number of TikTok videos in which she discusses the accuracy of the film.

Earlier this month, she explained that 'if you look at it through Jordan's lens it's really accurate' .

"I think that if you look at it through my lens it wasn’t, and that makes sense because that was actually how our marriage was," she said.

Margot Robbie's character was based on Nadine Caridi.

“However, I went to therapy, I became a therapist, actually got my PhD, and became an expert in relational trauma."

And this is true - Caridi went from her life with Belfort to living in California with what she says was no support from her ex-husband.

She then enrolled at the Pacifica Graduate Institute and earned her Masters in counselling as well as a PhD in Somatic and Depth psychology.

While the film might not be accurate to her side of the story, there is one scene in particular that she says got it right.

She added: "So many people when I go out, and we talk about 'what do you do, what do you do?' And I talk about the fact that I'm a therapist, and then it, you know comes up."

When she tells them it's The Wolf of Wall Street , she says: "everybody's eyes go POP. Yeah, that was me... Margot Robbie played me. And so many people ask me 'was it really true?'"

"A lot of it wasn't exactly true but the boat scene was totally true," she explained, before showing real life footage of the moment they were saved by the Italian Navy.

Nadine showed footage of the moment they were saved from the boat.

"It was horrific, horrifying, we were in a squall for 12 to 18 hours and we lived, thank god, for my kids."

If you remember the scene in question, Naomi, Jordan and his pals are caught in a ferocious storm while aboard a massive yacht and very nearly met their death.

Though it may seem dramatic, it turns out it was very much based on facts.

Topics:  TV and Film , Celebrity , Money

Daisy graduated from Kingston University with a degree in Magazine Journalism, writing a thesis on the move from print to digital publishing. Continuing this theme, she has written for a range of online publications including Digital Spy and Little White Lies, with a particular passion for TV and film. Contact her on [email protected]

@ DaisyWebb77

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The Wolf of Wall Street: History vs. Hollywood


November 11, 1974

Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA

July 6, 1962
Queens, New York City, New York, USA

December 20, 1983

Los Angeles, California, USA

February 1957
Lawrence, New York, USA

November 4, 1969

Uvalde, Texas, USA

July 2, 1990

Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

November 6, 1962
New York, USA

September 17, 1965

Buffalo, New York, USA

March 6, 1947

The Bronx, New York, USA

November 2, 1961

Did Jordan Belfort really meet his future business partner in a restaurant?

Jordan, Nadine, Nancy and Danny

What was the name of Belfort's brokerage house?

The Wolf of Wall Street true story confirms that, like in the movie, Stratton Oakmont was the name of the real Jordan Belfort's Long Island, New York brokerage house. Belfort and co-founder Danny Porush (played by Jonah Hill in the movie) chose the name because it sounded prestigious ( ). The firm would later be accused of manipulating the IPOs of at least 34 companies, including Steve Madden Ltd. (their biggest deal), Dualstar Technologies, Paramount Financial, D.V.I. Financial, M. H. Meyerson & Co., Czech Industries, M.V.S.I. Technology, Questron Technologies, and Etel Communications.

What exactly did Jordan Belfort do that was illegal?

Belfort's Stratton Oakmont brokerage firm ran a classic "pump and dump" operation. Belfort and several of his executives would buy up a particular company's stock and then have an army of brokers (following a script he had prepared) sell it to unsuspecting investors. This would cause the stock to rise, pretty much guaranteeing Belfort and his associates a substantial profit. Soon, the stock would fall back to reality, with the investors bearing a significant loss.

How many employees worked for Jordan Belfort's brokerage firm?

At its peak in the 1990s, Stratton Oakmont, Belfort's firm that he co-founded with Danny Porush, employed more than 1,000 brokers.

Danny Porush says the movie's dwarf-tossing scene (above) never happened. Even Belfort's book only discusses it as a possibility. Did Jordan Belfort really host an in-office dwarf-tossing competition?

No. "We never abused [or threw] the midgets in the office; we were friendly to them," Danny Porush (the real Donnie Azoff) says. "There was no physical abuse." Porush does admit that the firm hired little people to attend at least one party. Jordan Belfort's memoir The Wolf of Wall Street only discusses the tossing of little people as a possibility, not something that actually happened.

During what years did the events in the movie take place?

The events in The Wolf of Wall Street movie took place during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Jordan Belfort and Danny Porush founded the brokerage firm of Stratton Oakmont in the late 1980s. The securities fraud and money laundering charges brought against the firm involved companies that Stratton Oakmont helped raise money for in public stock offerings from 1990 through 1997. In 1996, Stratton Oakmont was banned from the brokerage industry, which eventually forced the company to close its doors.

Was Jordan Belfort really known as the "wolf" of Wall Street?

No, at least not according to the former co-founder and president of the Stratton Oakmont brokerage firm, Danny Porush (portrayed by Jonah Hill in the movie). The real Porush says that he is not aware of anyone at the firm calling Jordan the "wolf." Porush says that it's just one of a number of exaggerations and inventions in both Belfort's book and the movie.

Is Matthew McConaughey's character, Mark Hanna, based on a real person?

Yes. In exploring The Wolf of Wall Street true story, we learned that Jordan Belfort claims to have met Matthew McConaughey's character's real-life counterpart, Mark Hanna, in 1987 when he was working at the old-money trading firm of L.F. Rothschild. His new acquaintance was an uproarious senior broker at the firm and introduced Belfort to the excess and debauchery that Belfort would later make a daily staple at Stratton Oakmont. Like in the movie, the real Mark Hanna behind McConaughey's character told Belfort that the key to success was masturbation, cocaine and hookers, in addition to making your customers reinvest their winnings so you can collect the commissions.

Did Jordan Belfort really abuse cocaine and other drugs?

Yes. In The Wolf of Wall Street movie, Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) is shown snorting cocaine off a prostitute's backside and nearly crashing his private helicopter while high on a cocktail of prescription drugs, including Quaaludes, morphine and Xanax. In researching The Wolf of Wall Street true story, it quickly became clear that Belfort used drugs heavily in real life too. In his memoir, he states that at times he had enough "running through my circulatory system to sedate Guatemala."

Jordan Belfort did give speeches like DiCaprio in the movie (left). Right: The real Belfort speaks at a 1994 Stratton Oakmont Christmas party (right). Did Belfort really stand in front of his employees and give riling speeches with a microphone?

Yes. Belfort was known to stir his troops into action by belting out words of motivation through a microphone. However, his speeches were often filled with more self-adulation than DiCaprio's speeches in the movie.

Did a female employee really let them shave her head for $10,000 to pay for breast implants?

The real Jordan Belfort claims this is true in his memoir. The female employee let them shave off her blonde hair for $10,000, which she used to pay for D-cup breast implants. Co-founder Danny Porush also says that the shaving took place, "...the worst we ever did was shave somebody's head and then pay 'em ten grand for it," says Porush.

Was Jordan Belfort's Quaalude dealer in the movie, Brad Bodnick (Jon Bernthal), based on a real person?

Yes. The character in the movie, Brad Bodnick, who has a goatee and is portrayed by The Walking Dead 's Jon Bernthal, is based on Jordan Belfort's real-life Quaalude supplier, Todd Garret. In his memoir, the real Jordan Belfort claims that Garret sold him approximately 10,000 Quaaludes.

Was there ever a chimpanzee in the office?

No. According to co-founder Danny Porush (played by Jonah Hill in the movie), the scene where Leonardo DiCaprio's character pals around with a chimp is pure monkey business. "There was never a chimpanzee in the office," says Porush. "There were no animals in the office...I would also never abuse an animal in any way" (though he does admit to eating the goldfish, see below).

Did he really almost crash his helicopter in his yard?

Jordan Belfort helicopter

Did Danny Porush really marry his own first cousin?

Yes. According to Jordan Belfort's memoir, the real Donnie Azoff (whose actual name is Danny Porush) did marry his first cousin Nancy "because she was a real piece of ass." After twelve years of marriage, the couple divorced in 1998 after Danny told Nancy that he was in love with another woman ( ). Danny and his ex-wife share three children together.

Did Belfort and his colleagues really have drug-addled nights and sexcapades with prostitutes on a near daily basis?

Though the movie and Belfort's memoir might seem like gross exaggerations of the truth, depicting heavy drug use and sexcapades in the office during trading hours, they're not exaggerations at all says the F.B.I. agent who finally took Belfort into custody, "I tracked this guy for ten years, and everything he wrote is true." Kyle Chandler portrays the agent in the Martin Scorsese movie.

Was Belfort really arrested for crashing his Lamborghini while high on expired Quaaludes?

Yes, but according to Belfort the car wasn't a Lamborghini like in the movie, it was a Mercedes. He was so high in a drug daze that he couldn't remember causing several different accidents as he tried to make his way home. In real life, one of the accidents was a head-on collision that actually sent a woman to the hospital.

The real Donnie Azoff, Daniel Porush, says that he really did swallow a goldfish like Jonah Hill (pictured). Did Danny Porush really swallow a goldfish?

Yes. According to the real Donnie Azoff, whose actual name is Danny Porush, the scene where Jonah Hill's character eats a goldfish is based on a true story. "I said to one of the brokers, 'If you don't do more business, I'm gonna eat your goldfish!'" Porush recalls. "So I did."

Did they really tape money to a woman's body?

In one scene of The Wolf of Wall Street movie, bricks of cash are taped to a Swiss woman's body. "[I] never taped money to boobs," the real Danny Porush says (played by Jonah Hill in the movie). According to Jordan Belfort's memoir, the event did happen but his partner Porush wasn't there.

Was footwear mogul Steve Madden really involved in Belfort's scheme?

Yes. As shown in The Wolf of Wall Street movie, Steve Madden had been a childhood friend of Belfort's partner Danny Porush (renamed Donnie Azoff in the movie and portrayed by actor Jonah Hill). Their fondness for drugs and alcohol reunited the two of them. During the initial public offering of his footwear company, Steve Madden Ltd., Madden acquired a large number of shares of his company, which were actually being controlled by Belfort and his firm, Stratton Oakmont. Once shares became available to the public, Stratton Oakmont got down to the business of selling them to unsuspecting suckers. Billing Madden's company as the hottest issue on Wall Street, Belfort's brokers in turn drove up the price. Eventually, Steve Madden was to sell off his shares when the hype was at its peak, just before the stock began its inevitable decline. Similar to what is seen in the movie, Belfort still maintains that Steve Madden tried to steal his Steve Madden shares from him. However, Jordan Belfort did make approximately $23 million in two hours as part of the deal with Steve Madden, who would later be charged as an accomplice to Belfort's scheme. For his part, Steve Madden was sentenced to 41 months in prison and was forced to resign as CEO of Steve Madden Ltd. He also resigned from the company's board of directors. However, he did not leave the company entirely. He kept his foot (or shoe) in the door by giving himself the title of creative consultant, for which he was well-compensated even while he was in prison.

Did Jordan Belfort really name his yacht after his wife?

Jordan and Nadine movie and real life

Did Belfort's yacht really sink in a Mediterranean storm?

Yes. In real life, Belfort's 167-foot yacht, which was originally owned by Coco Chanel, sunk off the coast of Italy when Belfort, who was high on drugs at the time, insisted that the captain take the boat through a storm ( ). Listen to Belfort tell the story during The Room Live 's Jordan Belfort interview . As he states in the interview, his helicopter didn't fall off the boat during the storm like in the movie. Instead, they had to push the helicopter off of the top deck of the boat to make room for the rescue chopper to drop down an Italian Navy commando.

How long did FBI agent Gregory Coleman spend tracking Jordan Belfort and his firm?

FBI agent Gregory Coleman, renamed Patrick Denham for the film and portrayed by actor Kyle Chandler, made tracking Belfort and his firm, Stratton Oakmont, a top priority for six years. In an interview ( watch here ), Coleman says that the factors that drew his attention to the firm were "the flashiness, the brashness of their activities, the blatantness of the way they were soliciting people and cold calling people, and the number of victims that were complaining on a daily basis." -CNBC

Did Jordan really strike his wife?

Yes. The Wolf of Wall Street movie shows Jordan (Leonardo DiCaprio) hitting his wife (Margot Robbie) with his hand and fist. According to his memoir, he actually kicked his wife Nadine down the stairs while he was holding his daughter. She landed on her right side with "tremendous force."

Did Belfort really endanger his 3-year-old daughter's life by crashing his car through the garage door?

Yes. In real life, he put his daughter Chandler in the front seat of the car without a seat belt on, before crashing it through the garage door and then driving full speed into a six-foot-high limestone pillar at the edge of the driveway. Like in the movie, he was high at the time.

Tommy Chong was Jordan Belfort's cellmate in prison and encouraged him to write the book. What was Jordan Belfort's punishment?

When he was finally arrested in 1998 for money laundering and securities fraud, Jordan Belfort was sentenced to four years in prison. This was after agreeing to wear a wire and provide the FBI with information to help prosecute various friends and associates. In the end, the true story reveals that he served only 22 months in a California federal prison. His cellmate in prison was Tommy Chong of "Cheech and Chong" fame, who was serving a nine month sentence for selling bongs.

What inspired Jordan Belfort to write his memoir?

It wasn't so much a what as it was a who. Tommy Chong (one half of "Cheech and Chong") was Jordan Belfort's cellmate in prison. After laughing at some of Belfort's stories from his days running the firm, Chong encouraged him to write a book.

Why is Jordan Belfort's memoir filled with so many exclamations?

Jordan Belfort attempted to model his writing after Hunter S. Thompson ( Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas ), who was known for using plenty of exclamation points.

What happened to Belfort's partner, Danny Porush, portrayed by Jonah Hill in the movie?

Danny Porush, renamed Donnie Azoff for the movie and played by actor Jonah Hill, served 39 months in prison for his part in the corrupt dealings of Stratton Oakmont, the firm that he co-founded with Jordan Belfort. Porush currently runs a medical supply business in Florida, where he lives with his second wife Lisa in a $4 million mansion. A 2008 Forbes article pointed out his company's fraudulent tactics, which included trying to persuade people to order diabetic supplies and getting them to provide information about their physicians that could be used to bill Medicare. A number of complaints surfaced accusing Porush's company of sending unsolicited packages that were accompanied by unexpected Medicare charges. Back in 2001, Porush was arrested in connection to a fraud scheme surrounding Noble & Perrault Collectibles, a company that sold commemorative coins over the phone. Victims saw their credit cards charged repeatedly, at times for thousands of dollars, while often never receiving any merchandise for purchases that were largely unauthorized to begin with. -Sun Sentinel Enjoying a well-to-do life in Florida, Daniel Porush and his wife drive matching Rolls-Royce Corniche convertibles. With regard to The Wolf of Wall Street movie, Porush said, "I really have no comment other than to say I would never try to profit from a crime I'm so remorseful for."

I heard that Jordan Belfort is a motivational speaker, is that true?

Jordan Belfort Motivational Speaker

How much did Jordan Belfort earn from his books and the movie?

Catching the Wolf of Wall Street includes more of Belfort's outrageous stories that were not included in his first book. As we investigated The Wolf of Wall Street true story, we discovered that Jordan's books, The Wolf of Wall Street and Catching the Wolf of Wall Street , netted him a $1 million advance from Random House. He also earned $1 million for the film rights to his story ( ). In a response to criticism over these profits and future profits from the movie, Jordan Belfort said the following via his Facebook page, "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." According to Jordan, the money is being used to pay back the millions still owed to those who were scammed by his brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont.

Does Jordan Belfort have a cameo in The Wolf of Wall Street movie?

Yes, the real Jordan Belfort appears at the end of the movie as the person who introduces Leonardo DiCaprio's character before he takes the stage at his Straight Line seminar.

Have any other movies been based on Jordan Belfort's story?

Yes, but only loosely. The brokerage firm in the movie Boiler Room , released in 2000, was inspired by the illegal practices of Jordan Belfort's Stratton Oakmont firm. In the movie, actor Ben Affleck portrays Jim Young, the Belfort-esque co-founder of the firm, who, like Jordan Belfort, trains his brokers in the "pump and dump" scheme.

Watch The Wolf of Wall Street movie trailer. Also, view Jordan Belfort interviews and home video footage of him speaking at a Stratton Oakmont party in the 1990s.

 Jordan Belfort Speaks at the Stratton Oakmont Christmas Party (1994)

The real Jordan Belfort speaks at the 1994 Stratton Oakmont Christmas party. He tells the firm's employees that he is "proud" of what he has accomplished and that the employees should also be proud of the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity they have been given. At the end, he shares a moment with co-founder Danny Porush (Jonah Hill in the movie). The video was posted by Mary Detres, author of the book , which provides an insider's account of what it was like to work at the notorious brokerage firm.

 Jordan Belfort Interview

Grant Lewers interviews Jordan Belfort on in 2010 about his memoir . Belfort talks about his life and what led him to start his firm. He offers his four keys to success that he teaches during his seminars and he recounts various stories, including his drug addiction, the story about his yacht sinking from the book, and trying to commit suicide.

 FBI Agent Gregory Coleman Interview (2007)

This CNBC interview is from 2007, around the time of the release of Jordan Belfort's first memoir . Following a brief interview with Belfort, during which he describes himself as an "arch-criminal" who was in a way a "cult leader," FBI agent Gregory Coleman speaks about why he was so determined to catch Belfort.

 The Wolf of Wall Street Trailer 2

The second trailer for the Martin Scorsese movie , based on the autobiography of the same name by Jordan Belfort. The movie stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Matthew McConaughey and Jonah Hill.

 The Wolf of Wall Street Trailer

Martin Scorsese directs Leonardo DiCaprio in the film adaptation of Jordan Belfort's memoir chronicling his life as a fast-living, corrupt stockbroker during the 1990s. Belfort's criminal ways caught up with him in 1998 when he was convicted of securities fraud and money laundering for which he spent 22 months in Federal Prison.

  • Jordan Belfort's Website
  • Danny Porush's Website (played by Jonah Hill)
  • Mark Hanna's Website (played by Matthew McConaughey)
  • The Wolf of Wall Street Official Paramount Movie Site

Pain Hustlers movie

The Fascinating True Story Behind The Wolf Of Wall Street

Jordan Belfort talking with hands raised

Even before Hollywood came calling, the real-life Jordan Belfort was equating himself to movie villains. Once a stockbroker, then a convict, then a motivational speaker, Belfort wrote of his experiences in his bestselling 2007 memoir , "The Wolf of Wall Street." It contains the line, "I had lots of nicknames. Gordon Gekko, Don Corleone, Keyser Soze; they even called me the King. But my favorite was the Wolf of Wall Street."

Cross-reference those first three alleged nicknames with the films "Wall Street," "The Godfather," and "The Usual Suspects." It soon becomes clear that Belfort, the born salesman, was all too ready to peddle himself as someone who belonged in the pantheon of great movie villains. Luckily for him (less so for the unseen victims of his financial crimes), director Martin Scorsese was happy to oblige him with a star-studded movie adaptation.

Belfort's memoir is filled with many wild stories, but some have questioned the veracity of its self-serving claims. By the time Scorsese came along and turned it into an Oscar-nominated 2013 film , audiences would be one more layer removed from the truth of what happened. The book cover reads, "I partied like a rock star, lived like a king," and inside its pages, Belfort, the "former member of the middle class," speaks in passing of "chaos capitalism."

"The Wolf of Wall Street," the movie, makes good on that dubious vision with a three-hour ode to excess, wealth, and skullduggery that's all the more unbelievable because some of it really occurred.

A conman's sworn (and swearing) testimony

Martin Scorsese, working for the fifth time with Leonardo DiCaprio as his leading man, broke his own Guinness World Record for cinematic use of the f-word with "The Wolf of Wall Street." His film "Casino" had previously set the record in 1995, but "The Wolf of Wall Street" eclipsed its 422 f-bombs with a whopping 506 of them.

That's just one interesting bit of trivia related to the movie. When you sift through all the swearing to get at the facts, though, just how much of "The Wolf of Wall Street" was true, and how much of it was embellishment — or straight fibs of the kind Keyser Soze might tell?

Jordan Belfort is not what you'd call a credible witness; in fact, the whole movie is arguably told from the perspective of a master of deceit, who scammed investors out of millions. Scorsese leveraged all his cinematic powers in service of what DiCaprio called "a modern-day Caligula" story, but he was also adapting a criminal's autobiography. That's a little different than what he did with "Goodfellas" and the aforementioned "Casino," both adapted from a nonfiction book where the gangster's tale came filtered through author Nicholas Pileggi.

"The Irishman," too, was based on a Charles Brandt book about the life of mob enforcer Frank Sheeran, whose confession was later discredited . In "The Wolf of Wall Street," the bad guy tells his own story, sometimes giving the camera a suitably wolfish grin as he does so.

Jonah Hill's character was based on Danny Porush

Terence Winter handled the screenwriting chores for "The Wolf of Wall Street," and he and Martin Scorsese framed an entire HBO series, "Boardwalk Empire," around another gangster named Nucky Thompson. Actor Bobby Cannavale – who won an Emmy Award for "Boardwalk Empire" the same year "The Wolf of Wall Street" hit theaters — narrated the original, abridged audiobook version of Jordan Belfort's memoir.

In the book, Jonah Hill's character, Donnie Azoff, is referred to by the name Danny Porush. Donnie was loosely based on the real Danny, who was Belfort's business partner and the co-founder of Stratton Oakmont, the Long Island brokerage house that becomes a circus of sex, drugs, dwarf-tossing, and pump-and-dump fraud in "The Wolf of Wall Street."

Though Porush has called Belfort's book "a distant relative of the truth," he himself married a not-so-distant relative: his own first cousin. In the movie, Belfort broaches the subject of these "rumors" over beers at a bar, eliciting Donnie's bug-eyed, toothy admission, "Yeah, my wife is my cousin or whatever." That part of Porush's personal background is true, according to Time , though he and his cousin are now divorced.

Unlike Belfort, Porush was not involved in the making of "The Wolf of Wall Street." Changing his character's name helped remove any liability the filmmakers might face for damaging his reputation. Porush reportedly threatened to sue them beforehand, so the name change was a practical decision meant to cover their bases.

What really happened at the office?

On the testosterone-filled office floor in "The Wolf of Wall Street," Jordan Belfort psyches up his stockbrokers with the words, "This right here is the land of opportunity. Stratton Oakmont is America!" It's true he used to give speeches to his employees with a microphone, which prepared him for his later life of motivational speaking. Substitute "country" for "company" in his movie speeches, and it lays bare the cultural subtext of "The Wolf of Wall Street."

In Belfort's America, money can buy anything and everyone. Sex workers were indeed charged to the company credit card, his book indicates, and Danny Porush says it's true they paid an employee $10,000 to shave her head. The movie makes a spectacle out of her doing it to get breast implants, with Belfort shouting, "This is the greatest country company in the world!"

It's not long before a half-dressed band comes marching in, followed by champagne waiters and strippers. Martin Scorsese dials everything up to 11, combining Belfort's book description of multiple parties into one hedonistic scene.

In an interview with Mother Jones (by way of History vs. Hollywood ), Porush disputed that the office ever brought in a chimpanzee on roller skates or did any dwarf-tossing at its parties. Little people are said to have attended one party, but Belfort's memoir only depicts the meeting where he and his associates discuss the hypothetical specifics of tossing them. Porush admitted, however, that the part where he/Donnie swallows a broker's pet goldfish was true.

Forbes really did profile Belfort

In "The Wolf of Wall Street," there's a scene where a journalist for Forbes magazine visits the offices of Stratton Oakmont. She's doing a profile on Jordan Belfort, which winds up being "a total f***ing hatchet job" in his eyes. The article appears onscreen with Leonardo DiCaprio in his tan-faced movie poster pose below the headline "The Wolf of Wall Street." All the while, Belfort rails against the journalist labeling him that, as if she was the one who coined his nickname and the movie's title.

You can read the real 1991 article on the official Forbes site (and see a larger scanned image of it here ). The headline was actually "Steaks, Stocks — What's The Difference?" This is one of the more interesting "Wolf of Wall Street" artifacts out there, showing how the movie partially overlaps with reality. It's a "prop" anyone can access online, and it offers a real view of how someone other than Jordan Belfort viewed Jordan Belfort.

The true journalist was Roula Khalaf, not Aliyah Farran (the fictitious byline shown in the movie), though her article does contain the highlighted movie phrase "pushing dicey stocks." It also contains a line that DiCaprio performs almost verbatim about Belfort "sounding like a kind of twisted Robin Hood, who takes from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers." Yet if it wasn't Forbes that coined the "Wolf of Wall Street" nickname, that immediately opens up the question of who did.

Was Belfort ever actually called The Wolf of Wall Street?

According to CNN , Jordan Belfort himself came up with the "Wolf of Wall Street" name. Before Martin Scorsese's film premiered, Danny Porush disputed that anyone at Stratton Oakmont ever called Belfort that. In 2013, a prosecutor in the Belfort case, former assistant U.S. attorney Joel M. Cohen, likewise told The New York Times , "In all the years that we investigated him, the hundreds of hours I spent with him and his cohorts, I never heard anyone call him 'The Wolf of Wall Street.'"

Circling back to Belfort's sketchy book claim that "Gordon Gekko, Don Corleone, Keyser Soze" were among his many nicknames, he had already lumped himself together with several cinematic bad boys. By linking his name to famous movie villains, it's as if Belfort aimed to set himself up as a sort of prepackaged Hollywood deal. "I was the ultimate wolf in sheep's clothing," he writes.

There's a part in the book where Belfort's apoplectic father, played by Rob Reiner in the movie, rattles off a whole paragraph of dialogue, which begins with, "And you, the so-called Wolf of Wall Street — the demented young Wolf!" Unless he was running a tape recorder in his office back in the 1990s, it seems unlikely Belfort would have been able to perfectly recollect such dialogue. It would appear that, rather than being incensed at his lupine nickname, Belfort anointed himself the Wolf of Wall Street as a bit of self-promotion.

What Belfort did before becoming a stockbroker

"The Wolf of Wall Street" begins with Jordan Belfort already relishing a rich and famous lifestyle. It then flashes back to him at 22, getting off the bus on Wall Street, "the one place on earth that befit [his] high-minded ambitions."

The truth is, Wall Street came a little later for Belfort. In the movie, he mentions being "raised by two accountants." Yet there's no mention of him dropping out of dentistry school (per The Independent ) or selling meat and seafood door-to-door. The latter is what prompted the wordplay in the  Forbes headline, "Steaks, Stocks — What's The Difference?" Belfort's beefy business soon went under, leaving him a failed businessman at 25. It was only then that he became a stockbroker-in-training at the firm L.F. Rothschild.

Matthew McConaughey's character, Mark Hanna, was a real senior broker at L.F. Rothschild who did advise masturbation and cocaine as keys to success, according to Belfort's memoir. In a video on his verified Twitter account, McConaughey said that the character's chest-thumping chant was born of a warm-up ritual that he himself did before every take, just to get in the zone as an actor. reveals that Belfort started selling stocks in 1987. That was the same year future president Donald Trump published his memoir, "The Art of the Deal," while Oliver Stone's aforementioned "Wall Street," with its famous movie quote, "Greed is good," hit theaters nationwide.

Fashion designer Steve Madden was involved

Actor Jake Hoffman, who also appears in "The Irishman" and is Dustin Hoffman's son, plays designer Steve Madden in "The Wolf of Wall Street." Madden and Danny Porush were childhood friends, just as the movie depicts. The company Madden founded (and continues to design for) is still a leading name in women's shoes. In the 2021 fiscal year, its revenue jumped up to $1.9 billion.  

The real-life Madden thought Hoffman's portrayal of him was "too nerdy." Though the movie implies he stabbed Jordan Belfort in the back by unloading shares after Stratton Oakmont took his company public, Madden told Page Six , "He ratted me out to save himself."

Madden wouldn't cooperate with the FBI as Belfort did, and wound up serving a longer 41-month sentence in prison (compared to Belfort's 22-month stretch). However, his life rebounded, and he's called "The Wolf of Wall Street" "a great movie." In his autobiography, "The Cobbler," Madden  wrote , "The movie also raised our brand awareness with young men and increased our name recognition."

Coco Chanel's yacht went down with Belfort's marriage

When Jordan Belfort is touting Steve Madden's once-in-a-decade genius in "The Wolf of Wall Street," he compares him to other well-known fashion designers. Coco Chanel's name is sandwiched between Gianni Versace and Yves St. Laurent without further comment, but Belfort had a greater real-life connection to Chanel, as he was the last person to own her yacht.

Between the publication and filming of "The Wolf of Wall Street," Chanel's image was tarnished by revelations that she was a Nazi agent . This may be why her previous ownership of the yacht was left out, despite being included in Belfort's memoir. As seen in the movie, he did sink the yacht in a storm, and he did sink his marriage by hitting his wife and driving his car through the garage door with his 3-year-old child in front.

The yacht was named the Nadine, not the Naomi, and the same goes for Belfort's wife. Margot Robbie landed the Naomi part by going off-script and slapping DiCaprio in her improvised audition . She regretted filming their love scene on a cash bed because of all the paper cuts it left her.

The real Nadine, who went on to become a Ph.D. and TikTok-powered therapist after their divorce, said it's not true Belfort bought her the yacht as a wedding present. His abuse of her and his rough helicopter landing on their front lawn was partially fueled by a real drug problem.

Fall of the new Rome

After Jordan Belfort is caught and becomes the Rat of Wall Street, the movie portrays him heroically tipping off Donnie Azoff about him wearing a wire via a napkin message. Belfort never tipped off Danny Porush, but in his sequel book, "Catching the Wolf of Wall Street," he related a similar incident involving another friend.

By likening Belfort to Caligula, Leonardo DiCaprio somewhat aligns "The Wolf of Wall Street" with the idea that America is the new Roman Empire. His decline and fall is its decline and fall. FBI agent Patrick Denham, seen on Belfort's yacht with the American flag almost flowing out of his head, can only try and plug the dam. Kyle Chandler's all-American image as Eric Taylor in "Friday Night Lights" thus underpins Denham's character, who was based on agent Gregory Lockwood.

Former Stratton Oakmont exec Andrew Greene, the inspiration for the toupee-wearing character "Wigwam" in the book and "Rugrat" (P.J. Byrne) in the movie, unsuccessfully sued the studios behind "The Wolf of Wall Street" for libel, losing in part because of the credits disclaimer:

"While this story is based on actual events, certain characters, characterizations, incidents, locations and dialogue were fictionalized or invented for purposes of dramatization. With respect to such fictionalization or invention, any similarity to the name or to the actual character or history of any person, living or dead, or any product or entity or actual incident, is entirely for dramatic purpose and not intended to reflect on an actual character, history, product or entity."

Tommy Chong was Belfort's 'cube mate'

Tommy Chong has dozens of movie and TV credits to his name, some through his collaboration with Cheech Marin in the stoner comedy duo Cheech & Chong. He had a recurring role on "That '70s Show" and has also done activism for marijuana legalization.

As chance would have it, a nine-month sentence for selling bongs online landed Chong in the same federal prison as Jordan Belfort. The prison was so nice that it didn't even have cells, but the two men apparently shared a cubicle. New York Magazine reports that they were "cube mates" or "cubies."

In 2014, Yahoo News further reported that Chong — as Belfort's cube mate — was instrumental in convincing him to turn his life story into a memoir. At the time, Chong was writing his own book, and though Belfort would regale him with stories of his stockbroker misadventures, he had been wiling away his days in prison by playing tennis.

The movie shows Belfort on the tennis court at the end, where he brags about how being rich and living in a country "where everything was for sale" helped soften the blow when he eventually had to face the consequences of his actions.

In prison, Chong gave Belfort some writing advice after the fictionalized first draft of "The Wolf of Wall Street" read like a John Grisham knockoff. "I told him a few tricks of the trade, how to articulate the story," Chong said.

Belfort was ordered to pay restitution to his victims

While Belfort was on parole, 50% of his income went toward restitution for his victims. That ended in 2009, but for the rest of his life, Jordan Belfort has to continue paying at least $10,000 a month into a $110 million restitution fund. In 2018, a judge made a ruling to garnish more of his funds since Belfort had only paid a "fraction" of what he owed. He, therefore, has a deep incentive to continue making money.

In the film, Belfort boasts of "selling garbage to garbage men." A pivotal moment comes when his first wife, Leah (Christine Ebersole), suggests that he rethink his penny stock scheme, marketing it to "rich people who can, like, afford to lose a lot of money."

From there, Belfort's off to the races, but among his real-world victims were retirees and small-business owners, not just fabulously wealthy individuals. Some people he duped lost their life savings or the money for their children's college tuition.

What's Jordan Belfort up to today?

In 2022, The New York Times reported that Jordan Belfort was investing in NFT start-ups and other ventures, while offering his services as a consultant, sales coach, and cryptocurrency guru. For the price of one $40,000 Bitcoin, guests could attend a workshop at his luxurious Miami Beach home.

The image that emerges in the Times via words and photos is one of Belfort drinking a morning Red Bull and lounging on his couch, surrounded by blockchain disciples — all men — whose bible for the day would be Belfort's 2017 sales manual, "The Way of the Wolf." One of the guests confessed to having already stolen a copy of "The Wolf of Wall Street" from the library.

Despite his continuing prosperity, 2021 saw Belfort himself become the victim of a crypto hacker, who robbed him of $300,000 in Ohm tokens. In 2020, Belfort also made headlines for filing a $300 million lawsuit against Red Granite Pictures, one of the production companies behind the "Wolf of Wall Street" film. The suit alleged that Red Granite and its CEO had co-financed the movie with a Belfort-like bundle of dirty money , stolen from the Malaysian government.

Belfort seemed to acknowledge that his own ill-gotten gains were the result of misdirected energy, and he could have profited better off legitimate business pursuits. "I missed the internet boom," he lamented. "I would've made 100x more money."

A Lamborghini of lies mixed with the truth

At the beginning of the "Wolf of Wall Street" movie, there's a moment where Jordan Belfort is speeding down the freeway in his red Ferrari as Naomi performs fellatio on him. Through voiceover narration, he offers a quick correction: "My Ferrari was white, like Don Johnson's in 'Miami Vice,' not red." The car then spontaneously changes colors onscreen, as if to illustrate the mutability of memory and malleability of the truth.

Later, during the infamous Quaaludes scene, Belfort drives his white Lamborghini under the influence and believes he's "made it home alive, not a scratch on me or the car." Two cops subsequently drag him outside, where he sees that the car is, in fact, wrecked.

In his drug-fueled state, he had misremembered the details. The irony is, in real life (per Time ), it was a Mercedes that Belfort drove home that night, not a Lamborghini.

If cars are interchangeable in "The Wolf of Wall Street," it leaves the viewer to wonder what other facts might have been changed for artistic purposes. For some things, all we have to go on is a game of he-said, he-said between Belfort and Danny Porush.

These are the same two men whose film analogs, played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill, are shown smoking crack together. In 2014, Porush denied moments like that or Donnie's impromptu public masturbation ever happened, telling The Sun , "I never smoked crack and I never pulled out my penis at a party."

Are you buying it?

As a filmmaker, Martin Scorsese took creative license with Jordan Belfort's book, just as Belfort may have taken license with some of the facts of his own biography. In "The Wolf of Wall Street," Belfort self-mythologizes. It's even possible there are things he believes happened that didn't, like how we see the movie Lamborghini making it home undamaged.

As he cold-calls strangers, reads from his script on how to fleece them, and coaches Stratton Oakmont trainees on how to do the same, the film version of Belfort puts one of his victims on speakerphone. With the guys around him snickering like hyenas, Belfort pantomimes reeling in a fish before flicking off the voice on the other end of the line. He openly mocks and shows his contempt for this sucker, who we never see, because we're always in Belfort's perspective. The other person's not important to him.

By the end, Belfort has reinvented himself as a respectable citizen, someone people will pay to see and learn sales psychology from at business seminars. For the final image, Scorsese points the camera at Belfort's audience, which includes the people onscreen and the ones watching the movie.

The real Belfort cameos as the host who introduces DiCaprio onstage. The Wolf is in Auckland now, asking guys with Kiwi accents to sell him a pen, but it's the same self-reflexive pitch-me pitch that he gave his "hometown boys" earlier in the movie.

The question is, are you buying what he's selling?

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Meet the Real Wolf of Wall Street Superyacht Built for Coco Chanel

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The yachting disaster is one of the most dramatic scenes in Martin Scorsese’s blockbuster The Wolf of Wall Street , and like many of the tales in the Leonardo DiCaprio flick, it’s based on a true story. In real life, predatory tycoon Jordan Belfort bought a yacht in 1993 called Big Eagle and renamed her Nadine , after his English-born second wife. The vessel had been built in 1961 by Witsen & Vis in Holland for fashion icon Coco Chanel, but had undergone many transformations by the time Belfort got his mitts on it. Originally 121 feet long, in the 1970s she was extended by nearly 15 feet, and in 1988 she was cut in half and had another 29-foot section grafted on, finally totaling 167 feet.

The Lady M Yacht

The luxury yacht used in Scorsese’s film actually bears little resemblance to the  Nadine , being a far more modern vessel. The director hired the 148-foot  Lady M , built by Intermarine Savannah in 2002 and refit in 2011, for filming. It features luxury accommodations for 10 guests, and a marble and granite interior with gold accents.

In Coco Chanel’s day the yacht was mainly used to cruise from Monaco to Deauville for the summer horse racing season. The real  Nadine  sank in 1997 during a storm off the east coast of Sardinia while crossing from Porto Cervo to Capri, much as the movie depicts. Belfort has said that his insistence on sailing in a storm caused the yacht to capsize. Luckily, everyone on board at the time was rescued by the Italian coast guard. 

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Jared Paul Stern

Jared Paul Stern, JustLuxe's Editor-at-Large, is the Executive Editor of Maxim magazine and has written for the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, the New York Times' T magazine, GQ, WWD, Vogue, New York magazine, Details, Hamptons magazine, Playboy, BlackBook, the New York Post, Man of the World, and Bergdorf Goodman magazine among others. The founding editor of the Page Six magazine, he has al... (Read More)

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Jordan Belfort Yacht: The True Story and The Wolf of Wall Street Version

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Jordan Belfort Yacht

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The true Jordan Belfort yacht story is as strange and unbelievable as the hit movie The Wolf of Wall Street depicts it to be. There are several insider stories behind the sinking of the mighty yacht that are not widely known but are quite interesting and different from the reel version in several ways.

Nadine yacht model

What happened to the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine? As the movie, The Wolf of Wall Street shows, the superyacht Nadine sank close to the coast of Sardinia in 1997 while battling what many calls “the storm of the century”. Jordan Belfort narrates the event in detail in the memoir describing his life in the 90s, which is what the Martin Scorsese movie is about.

Jordan belfort yacht sailing

Did the yacht scene in The Wolf of Wall Street actually happen? The Jordan Belfort yacht sinking scene in The Wolf of Wall Street was heavily inspired by a real-life event, though the movie did take some creative liberties. For one, the yacht was called Naomi in the reel version since the name of Belfort’s wife (played by Margot Robbie) was changed in the movie. In reality, the yacht was named Nadine.

Interesting insights on the sinking as portrayed in the movie

The movie captured each passenger’s fear and stress when the yacht got caught up in the 70-knot storm. There is some hilarity when Belfort starts yelling for his drugs to avoid the horror of dying sober. Several rescue attempts were made, but each was called off due to rising risks. By some twist of luck, the yacht’s engine room remained undamaged primarily for a while, because of which they were able to make their way through the sea.

The best features of the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine

The 167 ft Nadine, as its former passengers claim, was beautiful. When owned by Coco Chanel under the name Matilda, the yacht had five staterooms, large dining areas, and a helipad. The interiors were furnished with dark teak paneling. Each new owner customized the yacht’s name and interiors based on their tastes.

Which model was portrayed as the Jordan Belfort yacht Nadine in the movie?

Martin Scorsese got the yacht Lady M to represent Nadine onscreen. While Nadine had a luxuriously vintage charm, Lady M is a modern vessel with contemporary features. Lady M was manufactured in 2022 by Intermarine Savannah, while Nadine was built in 1961 by Witsen & Wis. The 147 ft Lady M is currently worth $12 million and is similar to Benetti yachts in its glamorous design.

Jordan Belfort’s life today

The entrepreneur and speaker Jordan Belfort’s shenanigans are well-known thanks to his detailed memoir and the hit movie based on some parts of his life. He spent 2 years in prison and now has practically negative net worth at 59 years of age. Yet, his extraordinary motivational speaking skills continue to attract and inspire people even today. It is easy for anyone watching the movie to wonder if many of the incidents are exaggerated. But considering Belfort’s eccentric life, even the Nadine sinking incident remains another regular anecdote shared in the movie.

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  • The Wolf of Wall Street is a black comedy that follows Jordan Belfort's rise and fall as a stockbroker involved in fraudulent practices.
  • Belfort's marriage to Naomi deteriorates due to his illicit activity, affairs, and drug abuse, ultimately leading to divorce.
  • The movie portrays Stratton Oakmont's illegal " pump-and-dump " scheme, resulting in the company's closure and Belfort's arrest, but highlights the key lesson of the intoxicating power of greed.

The Wolf of Wall Street is a Martin Scorsese black comedy based on Jordan Belfort's infamous tale of business fraud as a stockbroker. In The Wolf of Wall Street , Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) becomes a stockbroker and achieves a moderate level of financial success before losing his job in the 1988 Black Monday crash. He then founds the stock trading firm Stratton Oakmont, which quickly becomes a criminal enterprise as Belfort and his associates trick unsuspecting customers into investing in stocks without showing them the fine print.

Over its three-hour runtime, The Wolf of Wall Street follows the rise and fall of Stratton Oakmont and the wealth Jordan Belfort builds from it. It also chronicles Belfort's tumultuous romance with his wife, Naomi (Margot Robbie), and his increasingly out-of-control drug addiction. Belfort spends much of The Wolf of Wall Street barely keeping one step ahead of the FBI before finally being forced to turn himself and his company over in The Wolf of Wall Street 's ending.

RELATED: 20 Best Wolf Of Wall Street Quotes

Jordan Belfort's Arrest & Imprisonment Explained

As Belfort finally begins to break his drug addiction after a near-death experience aboard his yacht in Italy (which he himself causes by ordering the yacht to sail to Monaco during a storm), the authorities get the jump on him when his French banking associate Jean-Jacques Saurel (Jean Dujardin) is arrested. After Saurel sells out Belfort, he takes a plea deal to round up evidence on his Stratton Oakmont colleagues in exchange for a lesser sentence.

During a conversation with his partner in crime Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill), Belfort tips his friend about the investigation. Unfortunately for Belfort, the FBI learns of his warning, which is a major breach of his plea deal. Nonetheless, Jordan receives a relatively light sentence of 36 months in a minimum-security prison, and he's released after just 22 months.

What Happens To Jordan & Naomi's Marriage

Belfort and his wife, Naomi, initially have a quite happy marriage. However, it soon devolves into the two regularly arguing and swearing at each other over Belfort's illicit activity, extramarital affairs, and drug abuse. This comes to a head when Belfort is caught by the SEC and FBI, with Naomi telling Jordan that she is divorcing him and taking custody of their two children.

The infuriated Belfort then swiftly relapses into his cocaine use. After punching Naomi in the stomach, he tries to leave the house with his young daughter. Belfort is in a warped rage and high on cocaine, so he doesn't get far and simply crashes his car while pulling out of the driveway. Fortunately, he does so without hurting his daughter. Naomi takes their daughter back, and Belfort is left to ponder how much he has ruined his own life.

RELATED: Every Song In The Wolf Of Wall Street

Stratton Oakmont's Future Explained

Stratton Oakmont's business model was based on what is known as a " pump-and-dump " scheme, in which Jordan and his fellow stock traders greatly exaggerate the value of stocks to sell them at higher prices. After the customer buys the stocks, the price of the stock drops, with the customer defrauded of their money and Stratton Oakmont making a large profit. Needless to say, this is a highly illegal form of stock trading, and Stratton Oakmont's unusually swift rise attracts the attention of both the SEC and the FBI.

As the authorities begin to close in on Stratton Oakmont in The Wolf of Wall Street , Belfort makes a barely disguised attempt to bribe the feds with " fun coupons, " his slang term for money. However, the ruse is up altogether by the time he is forced to become an FBI informant. After Belfort's testimony against his co-conspirators, the FBI shuts down Stratton Oakmont.

What Happens To The Real Characters After The Wolf Of Wall Street's Ending

The movie's ending raises questions about what happened to the real Belfort after The Wolf of Wall Street . After serving his 22-month sentence, the real Belfort was released from prison in 2006. He has since become a motivational speaker and written two books on his time running Stratton Oakmont, one of which — The Wolf of Wall Street — served as the basis for Scorsese's film. Additionally, Belfort has also become a cryptocurrency investor.

Jordan's ex-wife, Nadine Macaluso, who was the basis for Margot Robbie's Naomi, has since gone on to work as a therapist and marriage counselor. Macaluso has also spoken on abusive relationships, and she is the author of the book Run Like Hell: A Therapist’s Guide to Recognizing, Escaping, And Healing From Trauma Bonds . Additionally, Macaluso consulted with Margot Robbie and her accent coach for The Wolf of Wall Street to help develop Robbie's accent as Naomi.

Azoff is an analogue for Belfort's real-life Stratton Oakmont associate Danny Porush, who was convicted alongside Belfort and served 39 months in prison. After his release from prison, Porush went on to work for Med-Care Diabetic & Medical Supplies. Porush himself later faced further fraud allegations amid claims that Porush and others at Med-Care had tried to fraudulently sell medical supplies to companies, though Med-Care pushed back with a countersuit.

What Jordan Belfort's "Sell Me This Pen" Challenge Means

In The Wolf of Wall Street 's final scene, Belfort has begun a new career teaching seminars on sales techniques, with the real Belfort even making a cameo introducing his on-screen counterpart. Drawing upon an earlier scene in the movie, Belfort approaches each attendee holding a pen in his hand and simply demands, " Sell me this pen. " As each attendee makes a failed sales pitch to Belfort, he takes the pen back and poses the same question to the next audience member.

The earlier scene in the movie sees Belfort demonstrating the same trick by handing a pen to his friend, Brad Bodnick (Jon Bernthal), who then asks Belfort to write his name down. When Belfort says he doesn't have a pen, Brad replies, " Exactly. Supply and demand. " The ending of The Wolf of Wall Street pays this off by showing, in a sly way, that the key to Belfort's success was all about enticing customers with something they didn't have, even if the sale itself was bogus. While the seminar attendees focus on making the pen itself look good, Belfort's sales methodology is both simple and elusive to all of them.

What The Wolf Of Wall Street's Ending Changes from Belfort's Real Life

With respect to the accuracy of The Wolf of Wall Street , Belfort has said that his drug addiction was significantly worse in real life. By Belfort's own account, he was addicted to up to 22 different drugs at one point. Additionally, per the real Belfort, the outrageous, drug-fueled shenanigans in the Stratton Oakmont office seen in The Wolf of Wall Street are also very accurate.

RELATED: Every Real Life Figure Leonardo DiCaprio Has Played In Movies

Macaluso has also stated that the movie portrays her marriage to Belfort truthfully. However, both Belfort and Macaluso have given different descriptions of the scene in which Belfort assaults Naomi. Through her TikTok, (via Daily Mail UK ), Macaluso has claimed that, rather than punching her, Belfort burned her clothes and kicked her down a staircase after she insisted he go to rehab. She also said that she did not threaten to take their kids from him, but that Belfort instead said he was going to Florida with their daughter.

Belfort has provided a somewhat different account of this incident and also says he did not punch Macaluso. Jordan has stated (via The Guardian ) that " it was more of a struggle where she grabbed onto my leg and I kicked out, " while acknowledging that " it was awful what I did " and he was on " massive quantities of drugs." At any rate, Macaluso has said that she and her ex-husband are " all okay today." According to her, Belfort even paid her a visit on the day of The Wolf of Wall Street 's 2013 release.

The Real Meaning Of The Wolf Of Wall Street's Ending

Above all else, The Wolf of Wall Street is a cautionary tale against the intoxicating power of greed, though it delivers its message in the form of a hilarious black comedy. When Belfort begins his narration in the opening of The Wolf of Wall Street , he is a cocky, self-absorbed party animal barely concerned about the ramifications of his illegal activity. He's more perturbed that he only earned $49 million the previous year (" three shy of $1 million a week, " as he observes). With Belfort outright bragging about the number of drugs he takes in the movie's opening, excess also goes hand-in-hand with his avarice.

For all the wealth he accumulates through Stratton Oakmont, Belfort is never really happy unless he is high on drugs, and he also treats money in much the same way. His ultimate downfall — and that of Stratton Oakmont — are both a byproduct of the same impulse. Belfort and his cohorts are constantly chasing the high that both money and drugs give them, no matter the harm they cause to themselves or others. In the end, Belfort learns some valuable lessons about greed and excess in The Wolf of Wall Street , though he remains a master salesman, as his pen trick shows.

Source: Daily Mail UK , The Guardian

  • The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

Who is Jordan Belfort? True Story of “The Wolf of Wall Street”

Who is Jordan Belfort? True Story of "The Wolf of Wall Street"

The guide will examine the life and fraudulent activities of  Jordan Belfort , whose real-life events inspired the movie “ Wolf of Wall Street “. It will delve into Belfort’s career, particularly his time at Stratton Oakmont and the financial schemes that eventually led to his downfall.

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Who is Jordan Belfort?

Belfort spent 22 months in prison, during which he found his passion for writing. Soon after his release, he published his first memoir, “The Wolf of Wall Street,” recounting his time as a stockbroker, later popularized in the 2013 Martin Scorsese film, in which he is depicted by Leonardo DiCaprio.

After various scandals and a term in prison for fraud, Jordan Belfort has reinvented himself as a motivational speaker, his primary topic being the distinction between greed, ambition, and passion on Wall Street.

Jordan Belfort and fiancee Anne Koppe

Jordan Belfort’s early life 

Jordan Belfort was born in 1962 in the Bronx, New York City, to Jewish parents, who were both accountants. Around 16, Belfort and his close childhood friend earned $20,000 selling Italian ice from styrofoam coolers at a local beach. 

After graduating from American University with a degree in biology, Belfort planned on using the money earned selling ice cream to pay for dental school, subsequently enrolling himself at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry. However, he dropped out on the first day after the school dean warned the students saying: “The golden age of dentistry is over. If you’re here to make a lot of money, you’re in the wrong place.”

Jordan Belfort’s personal life

While Jordan Belfort had a tumultuous business life and a flair for corrupt practices, his personal life wasn’t far from it. While running his company Stratton Oakmont, Belfort was already divorced from his first wife, Denise Lombardo. Jordan Belfort’s first wife, Denise Lombardo, whose movie character in “Wolf of Wall Street,” was played by Cristin Milioti.

You may also recognize the name Naomi, Jordan Belfort’s wife, portrayed by Margot Robbie in the movie “Wolf of Wall Street.” In real life, Naomi’s name is Nadine Caridi, Belfort’s second wife . Nadine and Jordan Belfort had two kids together (or Belfort and Naomi in the movie), but ultimately divorced in 2015 after domestic violence accusations.

Belfort’s ex-wife Nadine now goes by the name of Nadine Macaluso and works as a therapist, using her experience to help other women in abusive relationships via social media. Nadine has said she “ walked away from my marriage with absolutely nothing ,” reasoning “ it was the right thing to do ,” after realizing Belfort’s money was all “blood money.”

@drnaelmft I left my marriage from The Wolf of Wall Street with my kids and my curtains. #wolfofwallstreet #wolfofwallstreetmovie #wallstreet #nadinemacaluso #drnadinemacaluso #drnae #drnadine #marriedtothewolfofwallstreet #margotrobbie #margotrobbieofficial #tiktok #tiktokviral #tiktoker #tiktoknews #tiktokcelebsnews #tiktokfamous #naomiwolfofwallstreet #wolfofwallstreetnaomi #leonardodicaprio #leonardodicaprioedit #martinscorsese #martinscorsesefilms #martinscorsesemoviesbelike #icon #tiktoktherapist #tiktoktherapy #therapy #therapist #90s #longisland #wallstreet #wallstreet90s #goldcoast ♬ You Found Me – Instrumental Pop Songs & Kris Farrow

Jordan Belfort’s yacht was named after his second wife Nadine (or Naomi in the “Wolf of Wall Street” movie), which was previously built for Coco Chanel in 1961. It ultimately sank off the Sardinian east coast in 1996 after Belfort insisted on sailing out in high winds against the captain’s advice. 

Jordan Belfort’s net worth

It is estimated that Jordan Belfort’s net worth peak was around  $400 million  in 1998; however, the exact figures are unknown. Despite his fraudulent past, Jordan Belfort has leveraged his years working in the financial industry, engaging in different ventures.

Motivational speaking, book sales, movie rights, as well as various real estate, stocks, and crypto investments, have accumulated Jordan Belfort a sizeable fortune, which as of February 2024 was an estimated $115 million, according to  data  from  caknowledge . However, Medium   estimates it  at between $100 million and $134 million. As a result, his finances have shrunk by $19 million since the previous  report .

A large chunk of Belfort’s annual income of $18 million comes from book sales (a book titled “The Wolf of Wall Street”) and motivational speaking events worldwide, where he shares his story of triumph and failure. He also makes an impressive $50 million by selling the movie rights to his story.  

Furthermore, Belfort has invested roughly $27 in luxury real estate, owns multiple high-end cars worth $4 million, has an estimated cash reserve of over $32 million, and has an investment portfolio valued at around $15 million, adding crypto-related products.

Jordan Belfort’s podcast

Besides working as a motivational speaker and earning money through books and movies, Belfort keeps sharing his doings through a personal YouTube channel called The Wolf of Wall Street, where he posts monthly episodes of a podcast, “The Wolf’s Den,” where he shares his business ventures, motivational speaking events, life events, and new partnerships.

For example, in his session from January 13th with Robert Beadles, speaking to the founder of the Monarch crypto wallet, he shared his outlook on Bitcoin and the current crypto market and discussed the new regulations surrounding Bitcoin outlook for 2023 and the likely events that would follow.

Jordan Belfort’s career

Early endeavours.

At 23, Jordan Belfort became a door-to-door meat and seafood salesman on New York’s Long Island, dreaming of getting rich. He grew his business to a string of trucks and several employees, moving 5,000 pounds of beef and fish a week. But as he expanded too fast, the lack of capital ultimately failed the business, and he filed for bankruptcy at 25.

Wall Street

After the meat and seafood business went bust, Belfort’s interest turned to Wall Street, where he got a position as a trainee stockbroker at L.F. Rothschild. However, he was later let go after the company experienced financial difficulties due to the Black Monday stock market crash of 1987 .

Stratton Oakmont

Jordan Belfort eventually ended up at Investor Center, a small brokerage firm on Long Island, in 1988. There, he was introduced to penny stocks (high-risk securities with small market caps that typically trade for a low price over-the-counter (OTC) and are therefore less regulated than stocks traded on a major market exchange), which would later propel him to success. 

A year later (1989), Belfort started an over-the-counter brokerage house in the franchise “Stratton Securities” with partner Danny Porush. Within five months, the two had earned enough to buy the whole Stratton franchise, renaming the company Stratton Oakmont. The company essentially functioned as a boiler room that marketed penny stocks and defrauded investors with pump-and-dump stock sales.

Stratton Oakmont did astonishingly well over the next several years, at one point employing over 1,000 stock brokers, and was linked to the IPOs of nearly three dozen companies. However, during his years at Stratton, Jordan Belfort led a life of lavish parties and intensive recreational drugs (especially methaqualone under the brand name “Quaalude”), which resulted in addiction.

Jordan Belfort’s famous sales pitch 

Part of Belfort’s strategy was to teach his brokers his infamous sales pitch, the “ Kodak pitch ,” by which they were directed to cold-call clients and entice them with a trusted blue-chip company, only to then recommend stocks with higher margins for the seller, such as penny stocks.

The name came from using the blue-chip company Eastman Kodak as the bait. The goal of the pitch was solely to gain the client’s confidence in the trustworthiness of their firm by recommending a familiar household name that larger brokerage houses such as Merrill Lynch might recommend. 

From there, the client would receive future updates on Eastman Kodak and new stock pitches involving a penny stock that Jordan Belfort was illegally manipulating and funneling money through. Unfortunately, the penny stocks often had little or no actual fundamental value and later crashed, obliterating the client’s investment while Belfort and his company pocketed millions. Naturally, during these events, Belfort claimed that he only tried to help his clients invest in the future of America.

Recommended video : “Don’t hang up until the client buys or dies”

Steven Madden, Jordan Belfort, and Stratton Oakmont

Steven Madden was introduced to Stratton by Danny Porush (the key partner at Stratton) and welcomed into the firm with a $500,000 early investment . Next, Stratton organized an IPO that gave themselves up to 85% (illegal as the underwriter of the public offering) of the company, subsequently dumping the shares almost right after the company went public to their clients, banking $20 million . 

Madden eventually paid millions to the government and spent considerably more time (30 months) locked up in federal prison than Belfort (22 months).

The irony here is, however, though Steve Madden was taken public at a ludicrous valuation at the time (3 million shares worth $15 million), yet, as Madden writes in his memoir: “if you bought Steve Madden stock that day, even at the inflated price, and held onto it, you would be very rich today.”

Meanwhile, Eastman Kodak, the original blue chip company that served as bait to potential investors, has since filed for bankruptcy. Interestingly, in a twist of fate, the bait stock went bust, and the scam penny stock could have turned relatively small retail investors into millionaires today.

Jordan Belfort’s legal troubles 

Law enforcement officials targeted Stratton Oakmont throughout its lifetime. Finally, in December 1996, the National Association of Securities Dealers (now the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) expelled Stratton Oakmont, forcing it out of business. Jordan Belfort was subsequently indicted for securities fraud and money laundering in 1999.

Belfort’s demise can largely be attributed to his private attempts to move his money out of the U.S., smuggling it to Swiss bank accounts to be laundered. Eventually, however, the FBI agents (led by Greg Coleman and Joel Cohen) investigating Stratton and Belfort convinced witnesses to give them information about the move and were ultimately successful at also getting notoriously secretive Swiss banks to cooperate. 

With solid evidence, both Belfort and Porush were arrested in September 1998 and convinced to collaborate with the investigation. Eventually, Belfort pleaded guilty, and after the case had taken years to come to trial, in 2004, he was convicted. However, Belfort ultimately served only 22 months of a four-year sentence at the Taft Correctional Institution in California in exchange for a plea deal with the FBI.

Jordan Belfort was ordered through his restitution agreement to pay 50% of his income until 2009 towards restitution to the 1,513 clients he had defrauded (totaling approximately $200 million in investor losses), with a total of $110 million in restitution further mandated. As late as 2013, complaints had been filed by federal prosecutors regarding his payments, leading to Belfort making a separate deal with federal authorities to complete the restitution payments.

During his time in prison, he shared a cell with comedian Tommy Chong, who encouraged him to tell the story of his experiences as a stockbroker. On his release in 2006, Belfort realized there was interest in his life story and so began pitching his manuscript, which eventually got picked up by Random House, who rewarded him with a $500,000 advance. “The Wolf of Wall Street,” the book that inspired the Jordan Belfort movie, was on bookshelves within a year of his release.

Chong and Belfort remained friends after their release from prison, with Belfort crediting him for his new career path as a motivational speaker and writer. Belfort commented on his wrong-doings in his memoir, stating:

“I got greedy. … Greed is not good. Ambition is good, passion is good. Passion prospers. My goal is to give more than I get, that’s a sustainable form of success. … Ninety-five percent of the business was legitimate. {…} It was all brokerage firm issues. It was all legitimate, nothing to do with liquidating stocks.”

Yet federal prosecutors and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) officials involved in the case maintain : “Stratton Oakmont was not a real Wall Street firm, either literally or figuratively.”

Jordan Belfort’s books 

Belfort published two memoirs: “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Catching the Wolf of Wall Street,” also issued in approximately 40 countries and translated into 18 languages. In 2017, Jordan Belfort released a self-help book, “Way of the Wolf.” 

The former Federal prosecutor who led the investigation of Belfort has insisted that much in his memoirs is a fabrication embellished by aggrandization of his own persona and adoration by others and that “the real Jordan Belfort story still includes thousands of victims who lost hundreds of millions of dollars that they never will be repaid.”

Motivational speaking and sales training

Ultimately Belfort reinvented himself as a motivational speaker. When he first began speaking, he focused mainly on motivation and ethics in the financial world but then moved his focus to practical sales skills and entrepreneurship.

Recommended video: Jordan Belfort Reveals How To Sell Anything To Anyone At Anytime

The primary subject matter of his seminars is what he has referred to as the “Straight Line System,” a system of sales advice and persuasion skills, boldly stating : “You’re either a victim of circumstance or you’re a creator of circumstance.” 

What is Jordan Belfort’s sales training about?

Jordan Belfort's homepage presenting  the "Straight Line System"

Jordan Belfort’s schemes explained

Let’s now briefly explain the various financial schemes, Jordan Belfort, together with Stratton Oakmont, partook in, including a boiler room and pump-and-dump operation, as well as money laundering.

Boiler room

A boiler room is an operation in which brokers apply high-pressure sales tactics to persuade investors to purchase securities with false or misleading premises. Most boiler room salespeople contact potential investors by cold calls. While this means the potential client has no reason to trust the caller, it also means they have no background information to refute their claims.

Part of the pressure sales approach includes making exaggerated assertions about the investment opportunity that the client cannot verify, encouraging the investor to buy the stock immediately. In addition, the salesperson might insist on immediate payment, including taking an aggressive approach and threatening the prospect to act, lest they “lose an opportunity of a lifetime.” In fact, promises of high returns and no risk are essential to pressuring clients to invest.

Boiler room scams typically sell fraudulent, speculative securities, typically penny stocks, i.e., small companies that trade for less than $5 per share. Penny stocks are too small for major stock exchanges and are only traded over-the-counter, meaning that a relatively small amount of buyers can cause a significant price rise. 

In a typical penny stock scam, fraudsters would first accumulate a small-cap stock at a low price and then use boiler-room methods to gather buyers for an inflated price. In such a scam, victims may think they are buying on the open market when in reality, they are purchasing the shares directly from the scammers. The commission and the stock’s easy manipulation are the primary incentives for brokers to trade penny stocks.

Boiler room operations, if not illegal, unquestionably violate the rules of fair practice set forth by the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD). 

Pump and dump

Much like a boiler room operation, a pump-and-dump is a manipulative scheme to boost the price of a security through false, misleading, or greatly exaggerated statements. In a typical pump-and-dump, fraudsters use cold-calling, message boards, or social media to reach potential investors and convince them to buy the asset, with promises of guaranteed profits. Then, as the price rises, the scammers sell their shares, leaving investors holding the bag.

These schemes generally target micro- and small-cap stocks on over-the-counter exchanges that are less regulated than traditional exchanges as well as easier to manipulate. The practice is illegal based on securities law and can lead to heavy fines. 

Money laundering

Money laundering is the illegal process of concealing the origin of money obtained from illicit activities, i.e., making “dirty” money appear legitimate. The method of laundering money typically involves three steps: 

  • Placement: Injecting the “dirty money” into a legitimate (cash-based) financial institution;
  • Layering: Concealing the source of the funds through a series of transactions and bookkeeping tricks;
  • Integration: Withdrawal of the “clean” money as needed.

For example, Belfort attempted a money laundering method known as “bulk cash smuggling,” based on moving “dirty” money, in its physical form, over the border to another country (in this case, Switzerland), where the bank secrecy laws are much more stringent. 

Jordan Belfort’s boiler room

Ronald L. Rubin, the SEC enforcement attorney assigned to put together the case against Steven Madden, got a first-hand account from Jordan Belfort and Porush as “cooperating witnesses,” in which they explained the finer points of how they used their brokerage firm to steal millions of dollars from investors. 

Rubin breaks Belfort’s signature fraud technique into five steps:

“1. Create IPO Stock;

2. Line Up the Victims;

3. Bait and Switch;

4. Market Manipulation;

5. Sell High and Shut the Door”.

Let’s summarize his findings outlined in the WSJ article. 

1. Create IPO Stock

First, they needed a business to sell, and the definition of business, in this case, was very loose. What was required was not an actual business but rather a business entity with a story that could be transformed into publicly traded stock through a Stratton IPO. 

Notably, the Stratton IPO stock was not actually sold to the public but to Stratton. To avoid securities laws that forbid underwriters from buying more than a small percentage of the IPO stock they issue, Stratton sold all of its IPO stock to friends (flippers), who immediately sold the stock back to Stratton for a small profit. 

The IPO stock was typically issued to flippers at $4 per share and then sold back to Stratton for $4.25 per share – a lucrative deal for the flippers, who could pocket $50,000 from an IPO without risking a loss.

2. Line Up the Victims

Stratton’s brokers would first gain investors’ confidence by letting them make a small profit on one or two Stratton IPOs. Then, once trust had been established, the Stratton salesmen would inform these customers of a new hot IPO with a $4 issue price and wait for them to take the bait.

Like all Stratton IPOs, the stock’s price was expected to skyrocket after its release. So, for example, an eager customer with $100,000 of savings allocates the Stratton broker to purchase 25,000 shares of that IPO stock (with a $4 issue price) and then transfers the $100,000 to his Stratton account, offering Jordan Belfort and his cronies an exact picture of how much buying power they have.

3. Bait and Switch

Shortly before an IPO, the Stratton broker would call these customers and inform them that the IPO was so desirable that they could offer only a few shares at the $4 IPO price. However, the promise was still that they create purchase orders to be executed as soon as the stock began trading on the market, resulting in many customers assuming that such orders would result in stock purchases near the issue price ($4).

The pressure put on these investors was immense, especially since they had already consented to buy the same stock at the issue price, so they agreed to whatever was being shoved at them. 

4. Market Manipulation

The company could have made millions just by selling its customers penny stocks for $4 per share, but after a few such IPOs, investors and regulators would have grown suspicious. So instead, Jordan Belfort used the stock market to disguise his fraud.

Let’s imagine Stratton issued one million shares of the IPO stock, but its customers had already pledged to purchase $12 million of the stock in the aftermarket. 

The goal was thus to have the stock price rise from $4 to $12 per share before selling it to them. Then, having repurchased all of the IPO stock from the flippers, Belfort and Porush could cause the stock to trade in the aftermarket at any value. The simplest way to achieve that would have been to trade shares between Stratton accounts at increasing prices, but that would have been too conspicuous. 

So instead, they had their flippers buy small amounts of stock using “market orders,” which buy shares at the lowest price offered by any seller. Of course, the only seller was Stratton Oakmont. 

Flippers began placing these small market orders right when aftermarket trading kicked off on IPO day. At the same time, Stratton would sell its stock using “limit orders,” which offer stock for sale only above a fixed minimum price. After each of these sales, the firm would place another limit order with a slightly raised minimum price, resulting in the market orders executing at a higher price.

The market recorded a steady progression of trades at $4.25, $4.50, and $4.75, up to the $12 target price (all accomplished in mere minutes). And since this was the typical first-day trading pattern for legitimate hot IPO stocks during the 1990s, the manipulation wasn’t blatant.

5. Sell High and Shut the Door

When the IPO share price reached the $12 target, Stratton executed its customers’ buy orders. Had investors holding the inflated stock attempted to resell it quickly on the market, they would have found almost no genuine buyers, the stock price having nosedived about as fast as it had risen. 

However, such an early price crash was rare for legitimate IPO stocks and would have drawn regulatory scrutiny and scared away future Stratton customers. To combat this, Stratton sustained the high price, typically for a month, by purchasing any of its IPO stock for sale on the open market.

Still, letting customers sell their stock for $12 while Stratton Oakmont was almost the only buyer would defeat the purpose of the scheme. So, investors had to be discouraged from selling too soon. This was done by showering more hyperbole onto customers who called to place sell orders (Stratton operated before online brokers, which enable investors to place their own orders).

Most sinister of all, if customers couldn’t be persuaded into holding on to their stock, their sell orders would simply be lost and their phone calls ignored. Or, when the sell orders were finally executed, the lack of buyers would cause the stock to crash, resulting in the customers’ funds being totally wiped out. But, of course, by that time, Belfort had the following IPO ready and was lining up new prey for his schemes. 

Jordan Belfort in the “Wolf of Wall Street” movie

Based on Jordan Belfort’s memoir of the same name, “The Wolf of Wall Street” (2013) is a biographical black comedy crime movie directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Terence Winter, recounting Belfort’s perspective on his career as a broker in New York City. 

In 2007, Leonardo DiCaprio and Warner Bros. won a bidding war for the rights to Belfort’s memoir, with Belfort banking $1 million from the deal.

“The Wolf of Wall Street” synopsis

After trying out a few entry-level jobs on Wall Street, Jordan Belfort, still in his 20s, decides to establish his own firm, Stratton Oakmont. With his trusted right-hand man and a motley crew of brokers, Belfort and his brokerage make an immense fortune by defrauding investors out of millions. However, while Belfort and his cronies indulge in a hedonistic concoction of sex and drugs, the SEC and the FBI gather evidence for his eventual comeuppance.

Recommended video: “ The Wolf of Wall Street” trailer

In conclusion 

All in all, Belfort’s infamy has proved lucrative. He has picked himself up from the ruins of his fraudulent empire and built a brand new one by utilizing the media’s glorification and obsession with him as the embodiment of Wall Street greed.

FAQs about Jordan Belfort

Jordan Belfort is a former Wall Street stockbroker who, in 1999, was indicted for fraud and money laundering concerning his firm Stratton Oakmont’s market manipulation schemes that evaporated millions of investor dollars. Following his prison stint, Belfort transformed his image, becoming an acclaimed author and motivational speaker. His most notable work, “The Wolf of Wall Street,” chronicled his experiences and was subsequently adapted into a film by Martin Scorsese, with Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead role.

What did Jordan Belfort do?

Stratton Oakmount ran a boiler room to pump the value of penny stocks. Belfort’s brokers were trained to pressure inexperienced retail investors to buy shares of companies that Belfort owned, artificially inflating those stock prices and allowing Belfort to sell his shares at a high profit.

What Is a pump and dump scam?

A pump-and-dump is an illegal market manipulation scheme in which scammers artificially raise the price of their own shares to sell them at a profit. In a typical pump-and-dump, fraudsters use cold-calling, message boards, or social media to reach potential investors and convince them to buy the asset, with promises of guaranteed profits. Then, as the price rises, the fraudsters put in sell orders, leaving investors scrambling.

What is a boiler room?

A boiler room is an operation in which brokers apply high-pressure sales tactics to persuade customers to purchase securities. Most boiler room salespeople contact potential investors by cold calls. Notable boiler room tactics include making extravagant unverifiable claims on the stock, demanding immediate payment, or threatening non-compliance.

What are similar films to "The Wolf of Wall Street"?

There are various films that are both entertaining and educational that depict the greed and excess of Wall Street, such as:

  • “Boiler Room”;
  • “Wall Street” and its 2010 sequel “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps”; 
  • “The Big Short”;
  • “Margin Call.”

How did Jordan Belfort get rich?

Jordan Belfort got rich by starting an over-the-counter brokerage called Stratton Oakmont. The company earned money by functioning as a boiler room (a business where brokers apply high-pressure sales tactics to persuade investors to buy securities), selling and marketing worthless penny stocks, and defrauding investors via pump-and-dump schemes.

How long was Jordan Belfort in jail?

Jordan Belfort was in jail for nearly two years – a total of 22 months, despite pleading guilty and being sentenced to 4 years. Belfort and his associate Danny Porush were arrested in 1999 for money laundering and securities fraud.

Is Wolf of Wall Street a true story?

Yes, Wolf of Wall Street is based on a true story inspired by the real-life events of Jordan Belfort, who used to work as a stockbroker on Wall Street in the 1990s. Jordan Belfort defrauded thousands of investors of millions through his company Stratton Oakmont and was sentenced to jail for money laundering and market manipulation schemes.

How much is Jordan Belfort worth?

Jordan Belfort’s net worth is between $100 and $134 million.

Who is Jordan Belfort's wife?

Jordan Belfort has been married four times. His first wife was Denise Lombardo, followed by Nadine Caridi (played by Margot Robbie in “The Wolf of Wall Street”), whom he married in the 1990s. He then tied the knot with Anne Koppe in 2008. Most recently, in 2021, he married Cristina Invernizzi, who remains his wife to this day.

Where is Jordan Belfort now?

Jordan Belfort has transitioned from his controversial past to become a motivational speaker, author, and sales trainer. He’s penned memoirs such as “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Catching the Wolf of Wall Street,” with the former adapted into a hit movie by Martin Scorsese. Belfort’s recent endeavors center on delivering seminars and online courses where he teaches sales techniques and emphasizes ethical business practices. Drawing from his personal missteps, he often speaks about the importance of integrity in business.

Is Jordan Belfort alive?

Yes, as of December 2023, Jordan Belfort is still alive.

What are some famous Jordan Belfort quotes?

Some of Jordan Belfort’s most famous quotes include, “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it.” Another notable quote is, “There’s no nobility in poverty,” reflecting his controversial perspective on wealth and success. Belfort’s quotes often combine elements of ambition, the psychology of success, and a no-nonsense approach to achieving one’s goals, despite his notorious past.

Are Jordan Belfort and Danny Porush still friends?

The current state of the relationship between Jordan Belfort and Danny Porush is not publicly known. After their release from prison, both have attempted to rebuild their lives separately. Belfort has become a motivational speaker and author, while Porush has kept a lower profile, staying away from the public eye. Since their conviction and release, they have not publicly acknowledged each other’s presence. While they had a close partnership during their careers, it is unclear whether this relationship has continued or not after their legal troubles and subsequent life changes​.

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Martin Scorsese ‘Kept Fighting’ for ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ Yacht Scene to Be in Final Cut

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Martin Scorsese was determined that “ The Wolf of Wall Street ” would have a sinking ship onscreen.

The blockbuster, Oscar-nominated 2013 film which starred Leonardo DiCaprio as real-life disgraced stockbroker Jordan Belfort, was originally a whopping four hours long. While the film was eventually trimmed down to 180 minutes, screenwriter Terence Winter revealed that Scorsese refused to cut an expensive yacht sequence.

“Because [the script] was so long, you know, the fear was there were going be things that we were gonna have to cut — like the sequence where the boat sinks and they get rescued at sea,” Winter told The Hollywood Reporter . “It was on the chopping block for the longest time because it was so wild and so expensive. To his credit, Marty just kept fighting and said, ‘We have to have that. I have to have that.'”

The scene involves Belfort (DiCaprio) and his wife Naomi ( Margot Robbie ) having to be rescued by helicopter when sailing from Italy to Monaco in a desperate attempt to stop federal investigators from accessing bank accounts.

“There was actually a four-hour cut of that movie initially and it was just a lot more insanity — if you can believe there was room for any,” Emmy winner Winter continued. “But I was absolutely thrilled that everything got in there. Every possible thing… including the kitchen sink… is in that movie. I could not have been more happy with it.”

Acclaimed editor and longtime Scorsese collaborator Thelma Schoonmaker previously told IndieWire that the four-hour cut is beloved by those who had seen it, and Scorsese even considered releasing it in two parts. “Well, we thought about it,” Schoonmaker said. “But the film doesn’t work split in half. It has to have a certain arc.”

Actress Robbie recently revealed that the overnight success of “The Wolf of Wall Street” was overwhelming at times, saying, “Something was happening in those early stages and it was all pretty awful. I remember saying to my mom, ‘I don’t think I want to do this.’ And she just looked at me, completely straight-faced, and was like, ‘Darling, I think it’s too late not to.’ That’s when I realized the only way was forward.”

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  • Published: November 7, 2016
  • Movies , Narration

25: The Wolf of Wall Street

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Note: This transcript is automatically generated. There will be mistakes, so please don’t use them for quotes. It is provided for reference use to find things better in the audio.

The Wolf of Wall Street tells the story of Wall Street broker Jordan Belfort, who is played by Leonardo DiCaprio. We’re introduced to Leonardo DiCaprio’s version of Jordan as he explains a bit about his life:

His wife, Naomi, played by Margot Robbie. His 170-foot yacht. The fact that he has sex with hookers five or six times a week and does a ton of drugs.

After this rather stunning introduction that sets the pace of the film, we go back to learn about how Jordan broke into, well, the broker business. According to the movie, Jordan didn’t grow up with wealth, but at the age of 22, Jordan got a job at the investment firm L.F. Rothschild on Wall Street. That’s where he got hooked on money.

This background is mostly true, with the exception of his age.

Jordan was born in 1962 in New York City and, just like the movie says, both of his parents were accountants. After dropping out of dentistry school when the dean of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry told him dentistry is the wrong place to make a lot of money, Jordan moved to Long Island where he started selling meat and seafood. For a short while things were going well, but the business ended up forcing Jordan to file for bankruptcy at the age of 25.

So it was at the age of 25 that a family friend helped him get back on his feet by finding a job for him as a trainee stockbroker at L.F. Rothschild.

In the movie, it’s while at L.F. Rothschild that Jordan’s boss, Mark Hanna as played by Matthew McConaughey, that Jordan learns the real secret to Wall Street: Cocaine and hookers. Well, that and the stockbroker’s ability to convince their clients to re-invest any earnings they have into a new stock, along with a bit more. Each time, the client is getting rich on paper while the stockbroker makes bank on the commissions.

According to the real Jordan Belfort’s memoirs, this actually happened. Mark Hanna gave him advice early on about how to make money on Wall Street—and the drugs and hookers.

For a while this works. Then, just like in the movie, Black Monday hits. The movie glosses over this, but Black Monday was on October 19th, 1987. Stock markets around the world crashed. In the United States, the Dow Jones fell 508 points. Millions of dollars were lost overnight.

And again, according to the real Jordan, this was the catalyst for his getting canned at L.F. Rothschild. It wasn’t anything personal, a lot of people lost their jobs as a result of the market crash.

On the hunt for a job again, the next part of the movie is also correct. Jordan returned to Long Island where he started working for a company called Investor Center. What the movie doesn’t mention, though, is this little company was owned by a larger company called Stratton Securities. So while the movie does mention Jordan going off on his own to form Stratton Oakmont, it wasn’t quite the startup like the movie implies. Instead, after a year of working at Investor Center, Jordan earned enough to buy out Stratton Securities and that’s how Stratton Oakmont was formed.

Just like in the movie, Jordan hired a bunch of his friends to be his first stockbrokers. Although the whole “sell me this pen” stereotypical salesman technique wasn’t something Jordan did—that was added for the movie.

In the movie, one of those friends is Donnie Azoff, played by Jonah Hill. The two meet in a diner after Donnie noticed Jordan’s nice car and asks him how much money he makes. Donnie was so impressed by Jordan’s making $72,000 in the last month that he immediately quit his job and went to go to work for Jordan.

That didn’t happen. In fact, Donnie Azoff isn’t a real person. Donnie is a composite character, but the majority of his character in the film was based on Danny Porush. In real life Danny met Jordan through his wife.

Oh, but Danny’s wife was his cousin—just like Donnie’s wife in the movie.

Stratton Oakmont grew fast, just like the movie indicated. In the movie, there’s a moment where Forbes does a profile on Stratton Oakmont. Leo’s version of Jordan is upset that Forbes calls him “a twisted Robin Hood” and they come up with the nickname, “the wolf of Wall Street.”

Forbes did do a profile on Jordan. The Forbes article came out on October 14th, 1991. And Forbes staff writer Roula Khalaf did call him “twisted Robin Hood who takes from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers.” But the article didn’t come up with the wolf of Wall Street moniker. According to the Forbes article, Stratton, pushed dicey stocks on gullible investors.

Back in the movie, it’s about this point that Leo’s version of Jordan meets Naomi, played by Margot Robbie. And it’s about this point that Leo starts thinking of divorcing his then-wife, Teresa. In the movie Teresa is played by Cristin Milioti.

That’s true, although the names were different in the movie than real life. Jordan’s first wife was named Denise Lombardo, and Jordan was married to her from 1985 to 1991. Jordan divorced Denise after he met Nadine Caridi at a Stratton Oakmont party and that same year Jordan and Nadine were married.

In the movie, Jordan’s wedding present for Naomi is a 170-foot yacht named the Naomi after her. This is true, although since Jordan’s second wife was named Nadine the boat was also called The Nadine . But their marriage was far from a happy one. After the honeymoon phase, the movie shows Jordan’s typical morning ritual:

Fight with Naomi about whatever he did the night before. Go in the steam room to get the drugs out from the day before. Finally, assess the damage and seek to make up with Naomi.

These specifics were taken straight from the real Jordan’s book. The scene where Naomi spreads her legs open and tells Jordan he won’t be getting sex for a long time, only to find out she’s in full view of the security tape. So, according to Jordan at least, that’s true.

Back at the office in the movie, one of the craziest scenes for Donnie is when he eats the pet fish from the Silicon Valley guy. Thomas Middleditch. He plays Hooli’s founder Richard Hendricks in Silicon Valley. Okay, so The Wolf of Wall Street was released the year before Silicon Valley came out and in the movie Thomas obviously isn’t playing Richard Hendricks. In the movie he’s actually credited as “Stratton Broker in a Bowtie.” But he’ll always be the Silicon Valley guy to me.

Anyway, Jonah Hill’s version of Donnie swallows the Silicon Valley guy’s pet fish and then fires him. Amazingly, this is true. Well, at least Danny Porush claims it’s true. We don’t really have any other proof of this other than Danny’s word, so I guess we’ll have to take him for it. And considering how much drugs and alcohol was common in the Stratton Oakmont offices, it’s not surprising that some crazy things happened.

This fish-eating moment happened on, according to Leo’s version of Jordan, the biggest day in Stratton’s history. They’re launching Steve Madden’s IPO. In the movie Steve Madden is played by Jake Hoffman.

Just like in the movie, the real Stratton Oakmont was the firm who launched Steve Madden, Inc.’s initial public offering for his women’s shoe company. And just like in the movie, Steve was a childhood friend of Danny Porush, the guy who Jonah Hill’s character was primarily based on. The movie doesn’t really mention this, but the real Steve Madden was tangled up in Stratton Oakmont’s scheme. In 2002, he was convicted of stock manipulation, money and securities fraud. Before he went to prison, though, Steve resigned as CEO of Steve Madden, Ltd., and then accepted a position at Steve Madden, Ltd., as a creative consultant for a handsome salary of $700,000 a year. He was sentenced to 31 months, and still drew that salary while he was in prison.

But that’s after the events in the movie.

Back in the movie’s timeline, after the IPO of Steve Madden’s company, the FBI is starting to put things together. Agent Denham, played by Kyle Chandler, starts to catch on to the illegal behavior going on at Stratton Oakmont. He even meets with Leo’s version of Jordan on his yacht, the Naomi .

That didn’t happen, and as you can probably guess Agent Patrick Denham is another fake name. In truth the agent at the FBI who was tracking Jordan Belfort was FBI Special Agent Gregory Coleman.

Knowing the FBI is investigating him, in the movie Jordan decides to start hiding his money. He’s going to do this by moving it to a Swiss bank account. To get the cash to Switzerland, he needs someone with a European passport. And he finds someone in Naomi’s Aunt Emma, who is played by Joanna Lumley. But there’s way too much cash for one person to take. So they go with Jordan’s drug dealer’s wife, Chantalle, a stripper born in Switzerland.

The drug dealer’s name is Brad, and he’s played by Jon Bernthal and Chantalle is played by Katarina Cas.

The names are changed, for example Brad is based on the real Todd Garret, a drug dealer who provided Jordan with Quaaludes. But the basic gist of this is pretty accurate. Aunt Emma was actually named Patricia, but this is how the real Jordan moved his money to Switzerland. And while the details of the argument in the exchange are fictionalized, just like in the movie, Jordan’s drug-dealer friend, Brad in the movie, botched a money hand-off with Danny Porush.

The FBI was getting closer.

As a quick side note, the private investigator in the movie, Bo Dietl, is actually playing himself. That’s the real P.I. that the real Jordan Belfort hired to try to find out what the FBI was investigating.

In the movie, Bo warns Jordan that his home is tapped and after taking an obscene amount of Lemmon 714 pills, he drives his Lamborghini Countach from a country club to his home. Then Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill proceed to have the slowest fight in movie history. It’s pretty funny to see.

And again, the details weren’t quite that way but the basic gist of this was true. For example, according to the real Jordan Belfort it wasn’t a Lamborghini but a Mercedes that he drove while high on expired Quaaludes.

Oh, and if you’re like me and you’re not familiar with what Quaaludes are, that’s a brand name of the methaqualone drug. It’s a sedative drug that’s used to treat anxiety. It’s also incredibly addictive. While not related to this at all, in 2015 comedian Bill Cosby admitted to drugging women he wanted to have sex with using Quaaludes.

Leo’s version of Jordan in the movie is shocked when he sees the banged up Lamborghini. He’s amazed he didn’t get hurt. He’s amazed he didn’t hurt anyone else.

That’s not true. He did hurt someone else. While the real Jordan couldn’t recall this happening because he was so high, while he was driving his Mercedes he caused a head-on collision that sent the driver of the other car to the hospital. Fortunately, she ended up being okay.

In the movie, while Leo’s version of Jordan has taken the yacht to Italy they find out Aunt Emma has passed away. Naomi is grief-stricken, and you can tell Jordan is also sad—but for a different reason. What about the $20 million Aunt Emma has in her Swiss bank accounts for him?

This actually happened. Patricia passed away while Jordan’s money was still in her name in Swiss banks. And just like in the movie, the real Jordan convinced the boat’s captain to go through a storm in the Mediterranean Sea. And again, just like in the movie, the storm won. The Nadine sank off the coast of Italy and the passengers and crew had to be rescued by an Italian Navy helicopter.

According to the real Jordan Belfort, there was one thing the movie got wrong here, though. The helicopter on the yacht didn’t fall off on its own. They had to push it off to make room for the Italian Navy chopper to lower a commando to come rescue them.

Why was it an Italian Navy commando rescuing them? Jordan didn’t ever say.

In the movie, things started to fall apart for Jordan when he gets arrested while filming an infomercial. That didn’t really happen. Well, not during the filming of an infomercial. But Jordan did get arrested. It was FBI Special Agent Gregory Coleman who had been tracking Jordan for over six years before he finally made his move. While the movie made it seem like Jordan had met FBI Agent Denham, in truth Jordan didn’t meet the FBI agent after him until Agent Coleman showed up at Jordan’s home to arrest him.

Faced with decades in prison, Jordan is offered the chance to cooperate in the movie. And in real life, he agreed to cooperate.

In the movie, when Jordan tells Naomi he’s agreed to cooperate with the FBI in exchange for a reduced sentence, she says, “I’m happy for you.” They have sex and then she tells Jordan that’s the last time—she wants a divorce. Enraged, Jordan punches Naomi in the gut and runs to grab his daughter, Skylar, and rushes out to the car. With Naomi yelling at him, Jordan backs the car through the garage door and wrecks it.

This happened. Jordan, while high, crashed his car into a six-foot pillar at the edge of his driveway. He never admitting to gut-punching Nadine, though. But he did admit to kicking her down the stairs while he was holding their daughter. Oh, and Nadine and Jordan didn’t have just the one child. They had two children together and the couple divorced in 2005. That’s years after Jordan was indicted in 1998.

Back at the office, there’s a moment where Leo’s Jordan is wearing a wire and he walks into the office with Donnie.

While they’re chatting, Jordan passes Donnie a note that says, “Don’t incriminate yourself. I’m wearing a wire.”

In truth, Jordan passed that note for another of his friends, Dave Beall, not the character Jonah Hill’s version of Donnie was based on—Danny Porush. According to the movie, thanks to his cooperation in helping bring down some of his friends, Jordan was sentenced to 36 months, or three years, in prison and fined $110 million.

That’s true, although the movie doesn’t mention how much of that he actually served. In truth, Jordan Belfort served 22 months. As for the $110 million, that was supposed to go to the victims of his scams. And just like Jordan didn’t serve the full 36 months, he also apparently hasn’t paid the money he owes. According to a report by Brooklyn federal prosecutors that was released just before the 2013 movie hit theaters, Jordan had only paid about $11.6 million of the $110 million he was ordered to pay to the 1,513 victims identified in his 2003 court case. And $10.4 million of that was money from court-ordered property forfeiture.

Oh, and the same report indicated Jordan had made over $700,000 from the book deal for The Wolf of Wall Street , the book that the movie was based on. He wrote the book while he was in prison and after his cellmate, the comedian Tommy Chong, encouraged him to write about his crazy stories. Then he made another $125,000 from the movie producers for rights to turn the book into a movie.

But according to Jordan’s lawyers, he’s “made repeated efforts over the last two-plus years to pay 100% of the profits of the movie and the two books.” The last two years being the two years before the report came out in 2013.

So, I don’t know how Jordan’s been trying to pay but maybe the payment system for the government wasn’t working? This is a perfect example of a story where it’s one side saying one thing and another saying something else. The tricky part here is you have the government on one side and Jordan Belfort on the other. Neither one of them are known for being very honest.

In the meantime, while Jordan and the U.S. Government can’t agree on whatever it is they’re arguing over these days, the victims of Jordan’s scams aren’t seeing any of what they’ve lost while Jordan lives a life of comfort.

Jordan has replied to the accusation that he hasn’t paid his debts. In an article on the New York Daily News website, Jordan is quoted as saying, “When I saw the deadbeat accusation, I almost started crying. I can’t believe something like this is happening in America.”

Today, Jordan Belfort runs a motivational speaking company just like you see at the end of the movie. In fact, the guy who introduces Leo’s version of Jordan at the very end? That’s the real Jordan Belfort. Leonardo DiCaprio has a video testimonial in which he says, “Jordan stands as a shining example of the transformative qualities of ambition and hard work, and in that regard, he is a true motivator.” 

In the end, The Wolf of Wall Street was incredibly accurate to Jordan’s book of the same name. A lot of what was said we can only rely on the word of those who were there, people like Jordan and Danny. And since those people made their millions by lying, it’s hard to know if they’re telling the truth. Or are they just stretching the truth to get a better story and, by extension, sell more books?

Perhaps our most convincing piece of evidence comes from an interview with FBI Special Agent Gregory Coleman who told The New York Times , “I tracked this guy for ten years, and everything he wrote is true.”

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The true story of Wolf Of Wall Street’s yacht ‘Nadine’

Jordan Belfort’s antics are so legendary that sinking a multi-million dollar yacht is just another act of depravity that Martin Scorsese manages to weave among The The wolf of Wall Street grotesque film adaptation. Those who know the wolf of Wall Street book will have read Belfort’s account about it in more detail, but the backstory of the superyacht Nadine is a lesser-known tale with unexpected twists.

Despite Jordan’s notoriety for unbridled bacchanalia, Nadine was sunk by natural forces far greater than even the fiercest drinking bout he could muster. In the middle of a pedestrianized Mediterranean cruise, a storm unexpectedly turned into a raging storm with high winds and huge swells to send the pride and joy of the wolf into Davey Jones’ locker.

In fact, this type of storm is so specific that it has its own name. The mistrals get their name from the winds that blow from the French Alps into the Mediterranean. This convection cycle is caused by warm air rising from African deserts and colder air from the Alps rushing through the void for sustained round trips of 12 to 40 hours. Nothing like a strong relentless wind to generate a dangerous swell. And the kicker? Mistrals are difficult to predict.

RELATED: Asymmetric superyacht hits market for $ 47 million

En route from Riva de Travino to the island of Sardinia, off the west coast of Italy, what should have been a routine race (which usually takes around 7 hours) ended in the fiasco that International Yachts described as ‘Mayday in the Med.’

“When we set off,†said Captain Mark Elliot, “the forecast told us to expect wind and choppy but small seas. Knowing that this wouldn’t be an ideal crossing, the captain asked if the guests wanted to delay until the next morning. The answer was a definite ‘no’ as they were all eager to head to Sardinia for a round of golf the next morning. So, they cast off and set sail for another corner of paradise.

Hours later, the guests were enjoying the sunny afternoon weather of another dream day in the Mediterranean… when a rogue wave reached the bow and wheelhouse, inundating a hostess from head to toe. Immediately after this warning sign made contact, a transmission was received via radio warning of unexpected gale force winds in the area. The mistral had announced. The swell heights doubled, the winds intensified, and the shit became real.

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However, before Belfort throws next-level parties aboard his elegant ship and charters it across the Mediterranean to Sardinia on that fateful day, Nadine had already lived many lives. In truth, the luxury yacht seen in The Wolf of Wall Street movie bears no resemblance to the period ship owned by Jordan Belfort. Scorsese hired a yacht called Lady M for these stages, which was originally built by Intermarine Savannah in 2002.

On the other hand, the real one Nadine (Where Mathilde as it was originally called), was built in 1961 and delivered by the Dutch shipyard Witsen & Vis for none other than fashion mogul Coco Chanel. At the time, Mathilde had five dark teak cabins, exceptional dining rooms and a helipad.

“At that time, it was the largest yacht on the East Coast,†recalls Captain Mark Elliot. “No one had ever seen anything like it.”

Wolf of Wall Street yacht

After Coco’s death in 1971 the yacht was renamed Jan Pamela by its new owner, Melvin Lane Powers. While not as decorated as his predecessor, Powers was a notorious and ostentatious Houston real estate developer known for wearing crocodile skin boots and driving a golden Cadillac after being acquitted of the murder of her lover’s husband. The New York Times described his 1966 trial as “one of the most spectacular homicide trials of all time.”

Powers ordered a huge refit and extension of the ship, but in 1983 it hit rock bottom and Jan Pamela was sold before being renamed Waterside . In 1989, it was Bernie Little’s luck, and he bought her sight without seeing her. She then underwent another refit, before becoming Great eagle under the command of Mark Elliot once again. In this form, she caught the attention of Jordan Belfort, who took possession of it in 1995. Of course, he had to undertake his own additions and renovations, before renaming the ship after his second wife, Nadine .

However, the reincarnation of this historic yacht as Nadine was to be short lived. After 35 years of leisure, sailing on the most beautiful coasts and welcoming the great names of the time, Mother Nature would have the last word.

Back in the Mediterranean, hours later, roaring gusts ripped the $ 100,000 tender from its tow lines. Captain Mark Elliot calls to abandon yacht, as turning point Nadine against the crashing waves would have courted disaster. Abandoning the course to try to outrun the mistral was out of the question for the same reasons. They are there now – every captain’s nightmare – with seventy knot winds and 35 foot ridges to negotiate.

Wolf of Wall Street yacht

Then, Nadine’s The moment of “perfect storm” pointed its formidable head. The huge wave crashes all over the ship, tearing off the hatches and deck fittings, triggering a death knell that can only end with a day of disaster. The remaining supply crashes into the dining room window, causing it to collapse wave after wave flooding the living room.

“I knew at that time that Nadine had received a fatal blow. Once I assessed the damage, I walked over to the deck and used the satellite phone to contact the Italian Coast Guard known as “Gruppo Marine Italian,†says Captain Elliot.

First aid stations. Guests are gathered in a secure central location and escorted one by one to their cabins to collect passports and any valuables that can fit in a small bag.

Half an hour later, a rescue helicopter attempts to bring down a diver to pick up guests. However, the gusts of wind turned out to be too violent, and after almost losing the said diver, the helicopter aborted. Imagine the heartbreaking feeling of those on board Nadine , as the Coast Guard abandon ship, defeated by the rampaging elements, and return to the safety of the coast as the sun sets below the horizon and night sets in.

Hurricane-force winds, severe flooding and a 15-meter-high sea are now pounding Italy’s shores in what will be known as the storm of the century. The situation is so tumultuous that when a large merchant ship attempts another rescue attempt a few hours later, it almost crashes in Nadine , before setting off again and again, abandoning the crew and the frenzied guests.

31cf4e10 409f 11ec 9876 69705d7108ad Nadine dining room

The liferafts are deployed as a precaution… until the roaring wind also tears them from the sea, leaving the crew completely stranded on board.

Below deck, the flooded kitchen has become an electrified death trap, and the chef and engineer receive jolts from the current before pulling the ass out of there to the (relative) safety above. It should be noted that this is probably around the time when a deranged and drenched Leo shouts at Jonah Hill with the unforgettable line: “Get the ludes downstairs!” I will not die sober! To have. The. Whore. Ludes! ”

Times of crisis. With no options left, Captain Elliot calls to throw the helicopter off the bridge to free up space for another rescue attempt. He unhooks the tie-downs and rolls the ship twenty degrees, throwing the expensive equipment overboard and into the Mediterranean, where its rusty skeleton undoubtedly lies to this day.

31b22920 409f 11ec 9876 69705d7108ad Nadine superyacht interior 3

At around 5 a.m., the Coast Guard returned and began to hoist the guests, then the crew to safety in the reassuring light of dawn. The weather calmed down as the winds and waves calmed down, but the damage was done. The last to leave the ship he commanded for so many years, Mark Elliot takes stock of the wreck before finally accepting his loss, closing the engine room controls and seizing the buoy rescue package handed to him by the coast guard.

Nadine is swallowed up by the sea, just ten minutes after Captain Elliot left his decks.


While all the guests and the crew of 11 survive, the prestigious motor yacht and its collection of toys (including eight jet skis, four motorcycles, snorkeling gear, a helicopter and a seaplane) sink into the deep end. at the bottom of the Mediterranean, over 1000 m deep. the water.

“The insurance paid off immediately because it was the storm of the century,†said Captain Elliot.

Back on dry land, Mark Elliot was hailed as a hero after showing courage and leadership in such a dire situation. He was then offered command of Bernie Little’s famous yacht Vessel , and today works as a broker in Miami as one of the most experienced and capable men in the business.

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How accurate is ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’?

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This film image released by Paramount Pictures shows Leonardo DiCaprio as Jordan Belfort in a scene from "The Wolf of Wall Street."

It’s important to keep that in mind if you decide to dig into the fact and fiction of the film. “The Wolf of Wall Street” is quite faithful to the book by Belfort that it’s based on — though there are differences; the key ones are enumerated below. But how faithful is that book to reality?

It can be hard to tell, especially since some of its more outlandish tales turn out to be true. Nonetheless, below is an attempt to suss out the true-to-life from the merely true-to-Belfort in the film version of his story.

The broad outlines of Belfort’s story are faithfully rendered by the film: A talented but struggling salesman from Long Island, he got a job at venerable investment firm L.F. Rothschild, then was laid off after Black Monday. He went to work at Investors Center, a penny stock house, and a year later opened “a franchise of Stratton Securities, a minor league broker-dealer,” in “a friend’s car dealership in Queens.” He and his partner earned enough to buy out Stratton and form Stratton Oakmont, which he built into one of the largest over-the-counter brokerage firms in the country. (As in the movie, he hired some old friends.) He did an enormous amount of drugs — including Lemmon 714s — employed the services of countless prostitutes, and eventually went to prison for the pump-and-dump schemes that made him rich.

Much of DiCaprio’s dialogue comes straight from Belfort’s book, as do nearly all of the hard-to-believe misadventures: landing the helicopter on his lawn while stoned, crashing his car while severely high on Quaaludes, insisting that the captain of his massive yacht sail through choppy waters only to have the boat capsize and then get rescued by the Italian navy. Some of these stories are difficult to verify, but, for what it’s worth, the FBI agent who investigated Belfort told The New York Times, “I tracked this guy for ten years, and everything he wrote is true.” (Even the yacht story checks out.) As for the much discussed tossing of little people, shown at the beginning of the movie: Belfort’s second-in-command says “we never abused [or threw] the midgets in the office; we were friendly to them.” That same former exec says there were never any animals in the office, let alone a chimpanzee, and he says that no one called Belfort “the Wolf.” We know, at least, that the nickname was not coined by a Forbes writer. But, for the most part, it’s Belfort’s word against his.

As far as I can tell, Belfort is not a particular advocate of “sell me this pen,” a bit of sales interview role-playing that has been around for years. Another minor but notable difference between movie and reality: Belfort, unlike DiCaprio, is a short man, and multiple acquaintances have suggested that his lust for money, power and attention are evidence of a Napoleon complex. As for the fidelity of DiCaprio’s portrayal otherwise, there are many videos of Belfort you can watch online, including one or two of Stratton Oakmont company parties.

The case of Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill) is more complicated. For one thing, Azoff is a fictional name, and the character is sometimes described as a composite. His story closely matches that of Danny Porush — but Porush himself has disputed some of the details. Here are the basic facts: Porush lived in Belfort’s building, and he went to work as a trainee under Belfort before Stratton Oakmont. As History vs. Hollywood notes, he did not meet Belfort in a restaurant; they were introduced by Porush’s wife (and yes, she was his cousin; they have since divorced). He has admitted to eating a live goldfish that belonged to a Stratton employee, as depicted in the memoir and the movie, but denies the three-way with Belfort and a teen-aged employee.

Porush was indeed a childhood friend of Steve Madden’s, and the initial public offering for that women’s shoe company was the biggest bit of business Stratton Oakmont ever did. Madden, like Porush and Belfort, served time in prison for participating in the Stratton scheme.

The names of Belfort’s wives were also changed for the film. Belfort divorced Denise Lombardo, called Teresa in the movie, after meeting Nadine Caridi at a Stratton Oakmont party. Caridi, called Naomi and played by Margot Robbie, was a model who had appeared in beer commercials; in the book, Befort calls her “the Miller Lite girl.” In both the book and the movie Belfort calls her the Duchess of Bay Ridge (or just the Duchess, for short), because she was born in England but grew up in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. She really did have an English aunt (named Patricia, not Emma) who smuggled money into Switzerland on Belfort’s behalf, and who died while Belfort’s money was still in Swiss banks. (Belfort also had a drug-dealing friend with Swiss in-laws who did much of the smuggling — and that friend was later arrested after a botched money hand-off with Porush, just as we see in the movie.)

The scene in which Naomi spreads her legs open and tells Jordan he won’t be getting sex any time soon, only to learn that she is in full view of a security camera, is taken right from the book — as is the fight in which she throws water at her husband repeatedly. Belfort acknowledges hitting his wife in the memoir; he says he kicked her down the stairs. He also threatened to take their daughter away, putting her in the car with him and then crashing it into a pillar on their property. He was high.

The L.F. Rothschild trader who takes Jordan to lunch and tells him that cocaine and masturbation are the keys to success as a stockbroker is based on a real person whose name is not changed in the movie or the book. Mark Hanna has told his own version of the story on YouTube, and he does not seem to dispute the substance of Belfort’s account. (The lunch scene in the film combines two conversations from the memoir, using nearly identical dialogue.) Hanna himself was later convicted of stock fraud. He did not pound his chest and hum rhythmically, as McConaughey does so memorably in the movie; that flourish is based on an acting exercise that McConaughey likes to do, and was, according to the movie’s press notes, incorporated into the film after DiCaprio and Scorsese noticed the actor doing it on set.

Patrick Denham is another made-up name, but there really was an FBI agent who followed Belfort closely for years: Gregory Coleman. He told CNBC in 2007 that he was struck by the “blatantness” of Belfort’s financial crimes. As far as I can tell, they did not meet on Belfort’s yacht, as the movie suggests; in the book, Belfort first meets Coleman when the FBI arrives to arrest Belfort at his home. (The arrest did not take place while Belfort filmed an infomercial — that’s a bit of poetic license on Scorsese’s part.)

The Aftermath

After his arrest and indictment, Belfort cooperated with the FBI. In the film, Jordan, while wearing a wire, passes a note to Donnie telling him not to incriminate himself. Belfort did not pass such a note to Porush, but, in his second book, “Catching the Wolf of Wall Street,” he claims to have done just this for his friend Dave Beall. He ultimately served 22 months in prison and was ordered to pay over $100 million in restitution to his victims (which he has apparently failed to do). As the film depicts, he became a motivational speaker after leaving prison; at the seminar in the movie, DiCaprio as Jordan is introduced by the real Jordan Belfort (and, in real life, the actor has filmed a testimonial for Belfort). Belfort is not the only real-life participant to show up in the movie: A private investigator that Belfort employed, Richard “Bo” Dietl, is also in the film; he plays himself.

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