CHASING MADOFF

Make Reservations »

August 15, 2011, 7:00 P.M.

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

The SCA Summer Screening Series and Cohen Media Group invite you and a guest to a special preview screening of:

Chasing Madoff


Written and Directed by Jeff Prosserman
Based on the New York Times best seller No One Would Listen by Harry Markopolos


7:00 P.M. on Monday, August 15th, 2011

The Ray Stark Family Theatre
George Lucas Building, SCA 108
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

FREE ADMISSION. OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC.

 

In select cities on Friday, August 26th, 2011

About Chasing Madoff

What does it take to make the world believe the truth behind the most inconceivable fraud in history? Here is the story of Harry Markopolos, the man that knew the truth that the world failed to uncover. Chasing Madoff is a documentary feature that reveals the frightening true story behind the Bernard Madoff scandal from the team that discovered it ten-years before the public.

At approximately 8:30am on December 11th, 2008 two federal agents entered the New York City penthouse of 133 East 64th Street and arrested Bernard Madoff, the admitted mastermind behind the largest act of financial fraud in world history. Ten years prior, Boston-based Securities Analyst Harry Markopolos discovered that Bernard L. Madoff Securities was a Ponzi scheme.

Comparable to Eliot Ness and Al Capone, Chasing Madoff is the compelling story of Harry Markopolos and his team of investigator's ten-year struggle to expose the harrowing truth behind the infamous Madoff scandal. Throughout the decade long investigation, Markopolos pieced together a chain of white-collar predators consisting of bankers, lieutenants, and henchmen, all linked to the devastating Ponzi scheme.

With risk and danger apparent, Markopolos and his loyal team relentlessly continued to pursue the frightening truth. Finding himself trapped in a web of epic deceit, the once unassuming Boston securities analyst turned vigilante investigator now feared for his life and the safety of his family. Arming himself to the teeth, Harry became increasingly paranoid as the press continuously silenced his efforts of exposure and he found that no one would listen.

Provided courtesy of Cohen Media Group. Runing time: 91 minutes. Not rated.

To learn more about the film and to view the trailer, click here.

 

Director's Statement

When the Bernard Madoff scandal broke in December of 2008, I was fascinated with the magnitude of the scheme and the scope of what thousands of people had lost.  As news reports and pundits continued to focus on the financial losses, more than anything, I remained attracted to the stories of the real people connected to this crisis.  As a filmmaker, I saw the foundations of an epic tale featuring some of the greatest characters in recent history. I also realized so much of this story had yet to unfold.

In my preliminary research, I discovered financial analyst Harry Markopolos? 2005 report to the SEC entitled The World's Largest Hedge Fund Is A Fraud. Years before the collapse, this report targeted Madoff’s investment strategy as a giant  “Ponzi” scheme. After further reading, I was awestruck by his extraordinary conviction and dedication – his dogged determination over the course of nearly a decade to pursue an unpopular and completely unsupported campaign. With similar conviction and dedication, I began to investigate. Why did no one listen to Markopolos?  Who else was guilty that had yet to be brought to justice? And most grippingly, what personal tolls did he endure?

I soon discovered that Harry Markopolos is an unusual person with an unusual story. He is a classic underdog and a self-proclaimed financial sleuth. I first met Markopolos at his home in the small, South Shore town of Whitman, Massachusetts. As he told me the story of his team, collectively dubbed “The Foxhounds”, I observed their incredible courage and resilience, and how they put everything on the line in order to uncover the truth. I naturally questioned why the government, the media, and the financial services industry weren’t on the case nearly a decade ago. Markopolos didn’t have an answer but he was certain that “the white-collar predators connected to the scandal are getting away with the biggest bank heist in history.” I was absolutely convinced that this story must be revealed to the world.

In collaboration with Markopolos and his team, I discovered that the fall of Bernard Madoff was only the tip of the iceberg. Chasing Madoff is a non-fiction narrative film that reveals the shocking true story of Harry Markopolos, securities analyst turned vigilante investigator, and his team in their hunt to bring a covert network of financial predators to justice. Markopolos risked everything for the truth only to be ignored for nearly a decade. Facing incalculable personal risk and fighting against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, this is the classic story of the lone man who stood up for what he believed in. As the team describes their harrowing journey, the story reveals the banksters that continue to feed on the public, the lack of government oversight, and the lack of ethics in the financial services industry.

Juxtaposing the deeply personal story of the team with devastating facts, I believe Chasing Madoff is an expression of the truth. Comprised of personal interviews with highly stylized, illustrative mise en scène, Chasing Madoff is a financial thriller wrapped in an ethical case study. I believe the film raises a series of unanswered questions; can ethics exist in capitalism? Can greatness be morally achieved? Who can we really trust?

My take is that the greatest investment strategy white-collar predators execute is convincing the public they work for investors. There are simply too many financial predators still out there. Although Madoff is currently serving a 150-year prison sentence, there are hundreds if not thousands who aided and abetted the scheme that will evade justice. For me, Chasing Madoff is a microcosm of the greed and hubris that plague our turbulent economic times. Although the actions on Wall Street are not always illegal, more often than not they are unscrupulous. The industry and government are not looking out for our best interest. There are enough laws on the books. There are just not nearly enough people like Markopolos who are playing financial defense. I believe audiences will be outraged by what they discover.

- Jeff Prosserman

Check-In & Reservations

This screening is free of charge and open to the general public. Please bring a photo ID or print out of your reservation confirmation, which will automatically be sent to your e-mail account upon successfully making an RSVP through this website. Doors will open at 6:30 P.M.

Parking

The USC School of Cinematic Arts is located at 900 W. 34th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007. Parking passes may be purchased for $8.00 at USC Entrance Gate #5, located at the intersection of W. Jefferson Blvd. & McClintock Avenue. We recommend parking in outdoor Lot M or V, or Parking Structure D, at the far end of 34th Street. Please note that Parking Structure D cannot accommodate tall vehicles such as SUVs. Metered street parking is also available along Jefferson Blvd.

Contact Information

Name: Alessandro Ago
Email: aago@cinema.usc.edu
Phone: 213.740.2330