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How much money does Leonardo DiCarpio’s leading character make after kicking off a motivational speaking tour in the final scene of The Wolf of Wall Street? More than he made as a swindling stockbroker, says Jordan Belfort.
The real-life Wall Street broker, who spent 22 months in prison for fraud and money laundering, expects to earn more this year from his 45-city U.S. speaking tour than he did when at his peak in finance, which will allow him to repay the victims of his crimes.
“I’ll make this year more than I ever made in my best year as a broker,” Belfort said at a conference in Dubai on Monday, reports Bloomberg. “My goal is to make north of $100 million so I am paying back everyone this year.”
Belfort’s fine totals to about $50 million, he said, as a $110.4 million victim-compensation government fund must receive half his income. “After six months of putting all the profit from the U.S. tour into an escrow account, it will go directly back to investors … Once everyone is paid back, believe me, I will feel a lot better.”
“I got greedy,” Belfort commented of his wrong-doings, outlined in his memoir The Wolf of Wall Street on which the Martin Scorsese film is based. “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.”
However, he insisted that his crimes were not the majority of his Wall Street work. “Ninety-five percent of the business was legitimate,” he said. “It was all brokerage firm issues. It was all legitimate, nothing to do with liquidating stocks.”
The Hollywood Reporter spoke with Belfort in February on the film’s adaptation of his memoir, as well as DiCaprio’s portrayal of him onscreen. “The drug use and the stuff with the hookers and the sales assistants and the sex in the office … that stuff is really, really accurate,” he said. “In some respects, my life was even worse than that. Though I’d say I did more quaaludes than cocaine.” Watch the interview in the video above.
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