Wall Street Background

Wall Street Background

Wall Street is a drama movie made in 1987, directed and co-written by Oliver Stone. At that time Wall Street was riding high and the rise of the yuppie generation meant that there were many young and hungry brokers and readers looking for a way in to the big money. The movie tells the story of one such young stockbroker who becomes involved with an older, wealthy and unscrupulous corporate raider by the name of Gordon Gekko. Stone made the movie as a tribute to his father, Lou Stone, who was a stockbroker during the Great Depression. Although this is a fictional film many of the characters were based on actual people. Gordon Gekko is said to be a composite of several people, including Ivan Boesky, originator of the famous "Greed is good" line, as well as agent Michael Ovitz, art collector Asher Edelman ans Stone's personal friend Owen Morrissey who was involved in a twenty million dollar insider trading scandal in 1985. The character of Sir Lawrence Wildnan was modeled on Sir James Goldsmith, a British financier renowned for raiding the accounts of his investors.

The film has come to be viewed as the definitive portrait of 1980s excess and has also proved to be an efficient recruitment tool inspiring people to work on Wall Street; Stone and his leading actors have all told of fans who shared with them that they only became stockbrokers because of their respective character in the movie.

Michael Douglas won an Academy Award for his portrayal of Gordon Gecko, thanking Oliver Stone in his acceptance speech for casting him in a role that nobody had believed he could play; however not all of the performances in the film were quite so acclaimed, with Daryl Hannah earning a Razzie Award for the Worst Performance by a Supporting Actress, making Wall Street the only film in history to win both an Oscar and a Razzie.

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