Lawyer files lawsuit over 'Wolf of Wall Street'
- Associated Press
- February 19, 2014 - 6:20 PM
LOS ANGELES — A lawyer and investment banker who says he was defamed by a portrayal in "The Wolf of Wall Street" is asking for more than $25 million in damages and the film removed from theaters.
Andrew Greene says in a complaint filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of New York against the filmmakers and Paramount Pictures that the toupee-wearing character Nicky "Rugrat" Koskoff was modeled after Greene, whose real-life nickname is "Wigwam" because he often wears a hairpiece.
The hedonistic Oscar-nominated film starring Leonardo DiCaprio is based on the 2007 memoir by notorious Stratton Oakmont brokerage firm founder Jordan Belfort, played by DiCaprio.
Greene, who says he never gave the filmmakers permission to use his likeness, served as the firm's head of corporate finance in the 1990s.
The lawsuit says the filmmakers made Greene look like a depraved criminal, drug user and degenerate. In the film, the character "Rugrat," who's played by actor P.J. Byrne, uses cocaine, engages in sexual relations with a prostitute and shaves a woman's head, among other risque activities.
"The Wolf of Wall Street" is up for five Academy Awards at next month's ceremony, including best picture and best director for Martin Scorcese.
Paramount had no comment on the lawsuit.
© 2014 Star Tribune