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Hushpuppi: Mo Abudu, Universal Pictures to co-produce movie on ‘Billionaire Gucci Master’

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Merged photos of Mo Abudu, Hushpuppi



Emerging reports have suggested that the trio of Mo Abudu’s EbonyLife TV, Universal Pictures and Will Packer Productions have received the adaptation rights for a movie on Instagram celebrity fraudster, Ramon Abass aka Ray Hushpuppi.

The production houses have decided to do a movie on the International fraudster, based on a Bloomberg story, “The Fall of the Billionaire Gucci Master.”

Hushpuppi, who is known for his luxurious lifestyle, was arrested in the UAE in June 2020 alongside 11 of his associates over allegations bordering on hacking, impersonation, scamming, banking fraud, and identity theft.

His extradition to the US had followed after the UAE police detailed his arrest in a special operation dubbed ‘Fox Hunt 2’ where he was accused of defrauding 1.9 million victims to the tune of N168 billion.

Hushpuppi was arraigned and detained at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) in Chicago ahead of his trial.

But the socialite recently pleaded guilty to the money laundering charges against him, which puts him at the risk of 20 years imprisonment.

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Abudu and Packer are now teaming up to develop an untitled project based on a detailed article authored about Hushpuppi by Evan Ratliff, a Bloomberg journalist who covered the cyber fraudster’s case.

Confirming the news, Mo Abudu said the rights were won after a highly contested derby by several producers and is now set up at Universal Pictures, after pitching the ideas with Packer and Lopez.

The movie and TV producer further stated that EbonyLife’s position is to ensure the depth and authenticity of this film is told.

“EbonyLife Studios is partnering with Will Packer Productions to develop an untitled project based on the Bloomberg article “The Fall of the Billionaire Gucci Master” by Evan Ratliff.

“When the Hushpuppi story made headlines last year, I pitched the story idea to @willpowerpacker and James Lopez. They bought the idea and as headlined in this press release, together we won the rights to the Bloomberg article by Evan Ratliff mentioned above. The rights were won after a highly contested derby by several producers and is now set up at Universal Pictures. The globetrotting action thriller project is said to be a hybrid of CATCH ME IF YOU CAN and USUAL SUSPECTS.

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“It’s a dream come true to be working with WIll Packer Productions and Universal Pictures on this project.

“Just as a refresher, Will Packer Productions and Universal Pictures need no introductions. WPP has released a number of blockbusters that include …… ‘‘Girls Trip”, “Think Like a Man Too”, “Ride Along”, “Think Like a Man”, “Takers”, “Obsessed”, “Breaking In” and “Stomp the Yard” and Universal Pictures with over a 100 years in the business of movie making in Hollywood, have produced some of the biggest titles in the world.

“Further to the announcement just made about our partnership with Will Packer Productions and Universal Pictures, some of you might ask, why do we choose to tell a story like this?

“Firstly, there are many lessons to be learnt from good and bad stories.

“Secondly if we do not tell this story, someone else will and to ensure that this story is told with authenticity, a Nigerian storyteller with our pedigree needs to be involved.

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“Too often, these types of characters are one-dimensional and feed into the worst stereotypes.

“Hushpuppi’s story is based on a real person whose story is already partly known to the world but the film gives us a real chance to tell a cautionary tale about a character formed by his environment and life choices.

“The films of Martin Scorsese are a great example of a filmmaker telling richly layered stories of criminal characters from his heritage that we’ve all grown to love, without ever creating the impression that all Italian-Americans are members of the mafia. Needless to say, all Nigerians are not 419 scam artists.

Packer said, “Ten months ago Mo pitched us a rich and entertaining concept steeped in Nigerian culture that can only be told with the help of her unique perspective. Together we knew Evan’s work was the definitive telling and the perfect anchor of this saga.”

 

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