This documentary opens this week. Sorry if there's a thread already.
With the epic dimensions of a Shakespearean tragedy, The Queen of Versailles follows billionaires Jackie and David’s rags-to-riches story to uncover the innate virtues and flaws of the American dream. We open on the triumphant construction of the biggest house in America, a sprawling, 90,000-square-foot mansion inspired by Versailles. Since a booming time-share business built on the real-estate bubble is financing it, the economic crisis brings progress to a halt and seals the fate of its owners. We witness the impact of this turn of fortune over the next two years in a riveting film fraught with delusion, denial, and self-effacing humor.
Why do so many people equate money and decorating sense with gold leaf and that French Versailles look, not to mention huge monstrosities for houses?
Saw this Florida trash heap on Nightline the other night. She tries waaaaay too hard to appear ditzy and overconsumptuous. Glad they lost their asses.
That's disgusting thing is NOT a house!
Beyond tacky A fur coat when you can clearly see the sun coming through the room.
Going to Mc Donalds in a bently or limo.
Shes new rich tacky
Her family seems fun though.
I saw this a few weeks ago. It's hypnotic.
What's sad is a lot of people on other sites think it's elegant and love it.
If they had built a true copy of Versailles it could have been beautiful. The monstrosity they have created is a true horror! Obviously they indulged every tasteless and ignorant whim of the 'Queen' in the design and building of their house.
They have money enough to live anywhere and they chose...Florida?
I've noted before the the working classes associate the Versailles look with "class" and "luxury". You can see cheap knockoffs of that style at any of the larger flea markets, or furniture stores in downscale areas. It's usually painted and gilded, presumably to cover the low-quality wood.
Definite white-trash-with-money taste on display there. Thank you, OP, it's now in my Netflix queue.
I've been looking forward to this documentary ever since I read about its screening at Sundance. R13, they live in Florida because the hubby is, or rather was, a big real-estate agent in the Orlando area, and also the owner of a big timeshare company. R2, our "tasteful friends" would probably be more interested in the film had the mansion been finished; instead, it still stands empty and unfinished, with acres (literally) of uninstalled marble in the basement, and available for sale for the low, low price of $75 million, or $100 million if you want it completely finished.
[quote]They have money enough to live anywhere and they chose...Florida?
...with a view of Disney World no less.
Love that place!
The house is awful, but the furniture is very very good. Very ipmortant examples by the leading makers of the eighteenth and nineteenth century in Paris. These pieces all ended up at either Sotheby's or Christie's. The disconnect between the decorative arts and the architecture was bizarre.
Um, r18 here. Had it confused with the house in Beverly Hills. I am very mistaken, should have read the article before being a know it all. You are all correct, that stuff is hilarious. Sorry.
The wife reminds me of Linda Hogan who is, ironically, also Florida trash.
They are a stunning couple, what a life they have with their dreamy castle and all the fine things of life.
I just heard about the documentary for the first time. Seems like the kind of documentaries I like!
Anyone else watched it in the meantime?
I saw the movie. The wife comes off as very kind and endearing, believe it or not. Tacky, yes, but sweet. The movie ends somewhat deceptively: it leaves you thinking that they lost everything, but, after seeing the movie, I googled them, and their hard times are over, and construction has begun on the house again. They went through a rough spot that they got past. I agree with him that there should be a line or two at the end of the movie stating that things got better. It seems mean-spirited of the filmaker to not give a proper update.
Also -- I've worked on a few documentaries, and it's amazing how many scenes in them are staged. It was clear that many scenes had been staged in this, too, suggesting that the director had an ulterior motive.
AND: hey! I'm artist. Blatant self-promotion. Check out my website! BrianNash.net!!!
Just saw it last night. It's an amazing documentary that starts off as one thing (the crazy, 90,000 sf Versailles knockoff) and then becomes another (a compassionate yet devastating critique of American consumerist society).
Jackie was clearly compensating for something missing in her life. Gee wonder what that is? It's just hilarious to me that they chose to plop the vulgar piece of garbage in the middle of an Orlando swap. Jesus. Hideous. Her boobs were larger than my head.
Looks like Versailles is on! I am kind of excited to see how tacky this place will be.
r17 is right. That is exactly Donald Trump's style. Anyone else remember the Plaza in the late 80s, early 90s under his ownership? Ghastly.
You kind of like Jackie, she is pretty down to earth and charming but damn is she tacky. Could you imagine fucking her old man?
He's one of the assholes who threatened to lay off all his slaves if they voted for the n word. He and his vile cunt wife need to be the first in line at the guillotine.
Please tell me that they're so stupid they pronounce it vur-SAYLES, like that city in Kentucky.
No she actually pronounces it correctly. It's an interesting doc. I believe the filmmaker decided that Jackie would make good movie so she started to focus more on her. You can tell with the staged visit to the family and friends in Binghamton, the phone call to the girlfriend she bailed out, the trip to McDonalds. Still it's a good doc. It's nice to see the oldest daughter grow to be a sensible kid and defend her to the asshole father.
Just watched it on Bravo. Have to say, I felt bad for David Siegel.
And I can't believe I felt bad for him, knowing he's the guy that promised mass layoffs if Obama got re-elected.
r20, is that irony or coincidence?
She's actually from upstate New York and was an engineer for IBM.
In my opinion there is nothing for residents to do in Orlando unless you are spending $$$ at the parks and who does that every day. It's an ugly, boring place to live.
The wife is sweet, she plays bimbo but is actually someone with an engineering degree! Her life took another track of course.
David Siegel, he laid no one off btw, and it was just a threat of course. His company is fine. And he's a sleaze, hitting on other women in front of Jackie.
Meh. It's fairly entertaining but hardly anything new. Pretty standard issue reality tv. Not great documentary cinema.
R37 I missed that part...what were the circumstances of David hitting on another woman.
What's going on with her face on WWHL?
The professional title "Engineer" has been so bastardized it's pathetic. Same with "Architect". Trust me, that woman is no true Engineer. She went to some trade school upstate and got some whacky certificate "Database Engineer" or some other such bullshit "degree".
Her face looked like "Madame" on WWHL. What was she wearing a cat lynx stroller in Florida for?
Anyone catch that "dig" on WWHL when Andy Cohen showed her modeling pictures and said they were "vintage" pictures! WOOO!
David Siegel is one of the most disgusting people I've ever seen. He's a road-show Donald Trump (who refused to bail him out). Built his empire on stupid timeshares that people can't even give away right now (except for me, I found someone to take mine off my hands). Like Trump, he's obsessed with the women he couldn't get, like Miss America. The things he said to those women. "Would you rather find a goodlooking guy, or a guy with money?" Ugh. With his wife standing by, looking like she was inflated with a bicycle pump. Jackie needs to go down a bra size or two. She's way too top-heavy.
What got me was all the dog shit all over their house. These people are white trash pigs.
He also claimed to have been responsible for George Bush getting elected. When asked how, he said he shouldn't say because it could be illegal.
Why should anyone bail him out?
Those timeshares are the biggest scam going, you have to pay R.E. taxes and a maintenance fee year-round.
If I want to go anywhere I'll book my hotel, pay for it and that's it...not pay for something year-round that I don't use and can't unload if I get sick of paying for it.
Here’s Siegel’s account of how he swung the election in Bush’s favor: “Whenever I saw a negative article about [Al] Gore, I put it in with the paychecks of my 8,000 employees. I had my managers do a survey on every employee. If they liked Bush, we made them register to vote. But not if they liked Gore. The week before [the election] we made 80,000 phone calls through my call center—they were robo-calls. On Election Day, we made sure everyone who was voting for Bush got to the polls. I didn’t know he would win by 527 votes. Afterward, we did a survey among the employees to find out who voted who wouldn’t have otherwise. One thousand of them said so.”
I think she is actually an Engineer, she went to RIT in Rochester. It's a pretty good school. It's hard to believe because she seems to be the ultimate bimbo.
Unless they've changed the law, R41, it's illegal to use the title "architect" unless you're registered. You have to use designer or some other word that skirts the subject.
I liked the wife until she saw the call center and talked to the guy who was still there after everyone had been laid off (two days before Thanksgiving so they could get out of paying holiday time). The last employee was saying how horrible it was to see all these people lose their jobs (even with Bush as president), watching them walk out like "in a funeral procession," and the wife just mutters something like "times are hard all around." And who says to an Avis rep "What's my driver's name." Sheesh.
Is this on Netflix?
R50 Yeah and then on WWHL she claims they were never in danger of losing the house. They just had to say that because they laid all of those people off to keep the banks happy.
She deserves that shitty face job she got. Her doc must have been related to one of her former employees.
Yes, R51. I highly recommend it.
"she plays bimbo but is actually someone with an engineering degree!"
I have an MBA from Harvard!
Jesus what did she do to herself? Totally fucked up face, tits filled with cement and the tackiest wardrobe. Alexis looked like the epitome of good taste sitting next to her.
I hope so, R49. My company has "Database Architects" and "Software Architects" - hell - my official title is "Software Engineer", but I know good and well that I'm truly a Systems Analyst and they call me Engineer on paper to justify my billing rate. I started my career working with REAL Architects and REAL Engineers, I know it burns those people to no end to see their professional creds. co-opted by non-professionals as they are today.
R55 Alexis looked like Babe Paley sitting next to Angelyne.
There is no way that that woman is a bona fide engineer.
I sat in one of their hardcore sales sessions in Orlamdo. It's a fucking production and the salespeople go from super-sweet to downright mean if you're not interested. This was back in the 00s and the place was packed.
They assign a ''sales person' based on your age, martial status, have kids, etc they have it down to.a science. Unfortunately for them, I'm pretty immune to sales tactics and just wanted free tickets to Disney. But a lot of people were buying their bullshit spiel
I did that once, sat in a session for 30 minutes and got $50. It was a total waste of time and the salesperson did get rather testy with me but it was kind of fun to torture him.
Saw a bit of this last night, absolutely horrendous. It's amazing that anyone would think that terrible concrete bunker bears even a remote resemblance to any 17th Century French chateau, let alone Versailles, is ridiculous. Have they ever even seen a picture of Versailles? The furnishings in their present monstrosity are beyond description, total trash.
[quote]I've noted before the the working classes associate the Versailles look with "class" and "luxury". You can see cheap knockoffs of that style at any of the larger flea markets, or furniture stores in downscale areas.
I thought the same when I saw Tom Brady and Giselle Bundchen's house.
[quote]The professional title "Engineer" has been so bastardized it's pathetic.
Part of the problem is the field's breadth: it can encompass anything from a structural engineer (used in construction) to chemical engineer to computer engineer to nuclear engineer (my late grandfather's profession).
"Architect" is pretty clear-cut, in comparison. Unless you're AIA-accredited, you're not a "real" architect.
Scroll down to see the classy dress she wore to her step son's wedding.
She always has to have outfits focused on her breasts. And they're fake.
They keep saying in the doc how smart she is, but she seems to have no common sense.
The one sibling had it right when she said Siegel married Jackie because she was just another trophy. But the trophy is looking tarnished, despite all the botox and dermabrasion.
I think she's a compulsive shopper because to her it means daddy really loves her, even if he can't show it.
The most repellent scene was when they were in serious financial trouble and she went and filled up 3 cars with kiddie toys- sometimes several of the same product.
I think the most horrifying thing was the chair that David Siegel was sitting in. Even Huffman Koos doesn't carry that trash.
You didn't have to listen to anything they said, you just had to look at that chair and you knew the whole story.
R64, she obviously did not have her implants yet.
Geezus! Her teeth were so bad I thought she was English.
grey teeth, gaudy house. Literally sitting on swamp land. Mosquitoes.
No class trash Republicans.
Disgusting surroundings that aren't worth anything (who wants to walk in a room filled with shit? And dog shit, too!)
The husband is disgusting. Vile. Just so awful. Materialistic whore. Vile trash.
And yet they exposed all for the world to see? And then she showed up on WWHL. For what reason?
At the beginning of the film the old Jew seemed to have some warm feelings for his tacky wife & his late-in-life litter of kids, but once the bottom dropped out he couldn't give two shits for either.
What kind of man lets his wife have a litter of 7 kids just because they have enough Filipino nannies to care for them.
You just wait & see....Andy Cohen & BRAVO will soon be filming that tacky family for next Season's newest reality show.
sorry, one last thing: the professional real estate agent has a listing for $100,000,000 (!) and she can't even pronounce "Versailles" correctly? And get a load of her brochure -- in binder format!!!!
The eldest son said after his parents divorced his mother struggled financially, not enough food, etc, even though Papa Siegel was well off.
r72 the courts back then were shit to women, things have gotten way better but there are now problems with fathers' rights. In short we went full hog the other way, no middle ground.
R65, if she's his trophy he obviously came in 3rd.
With all the goodies lying around, the kids didn't seem happy. The self-centered mother; the distant daddy; the surrogate Filipino wet nurses... When they let the lizard die, I'm like "Hard labor in an Asian sweat shop, to see where those toys come from".
So what did he do to get George W. elected?
Linda Hogan is LA trash, born and raised.
[quote] They have money enough to live anywhere and they chose...Florida?
Of course. They're scammers. In Florida creditors can't take a person's house to pay a debt or lawsuit. Why do you think oj simpson moved to Florida? If he lived anywhere else Fred Goldman would have gotten his house. Fred can't touch his house in Florida or his pension
The house looks so terrible. It looks like they used cheap crappy construction products. The exterior has such sharp edges. And the flat roof is going to be nothing but trouble in Florida where it rains a lot, and very hard in the summer. It will all be leaking with in a year, if it isn't already
That house reminded me of Aaron Spelling's monstrosity of a house. Spelling grew up dirt poor on the wrong side of the tracks and probably built his huge mansion to prove that he was finally 'rich'. I'm wondering if David Siegel came from a very humble background as well. What else would possess someone to build such a ridiculous compound as a family home?
What also struck me about the setup was that the kids were seemingly getting no meaningful parental interaction. The narcissistic father was completely cold or remote most of the time and the ditzy mother was either in denial or just not giving much effort to help parent the kids.
At one point in the film she said something like, "I kept on having kids because we had so much help." What a strange and stupid reason to bring a child into the world.
With all of the money that they supposedly had back in the day, that place was a cultural wasteland. Those kids seemed bored and out of touch with 'real life' in a normal household.
It was sad to see all of the ridiculously-over the top things that their money went towards and yet there was nothing of substance emotionally for them to fall back on when the cash was gone. The parents did their kids no favors by showering them with excessive things but not investing in more time with them.
So what happened to them after the documentary? Did they lose the house/business?
No, in fact the building of their home has restarted. I have no idea what happened to the lawsuit.
r59, I did the same thing! My best friend and I went to Orlando and went to one of this guy's timeshare developments because they were handing out free Disney tickets if you sat through one of their spiels. We posed as a gay couple (LOL!!!) who was interested in adopting babies (Double LOL!!!) and wanted a time share near Disney for our future family.
Throughout the whole thing the saleslady couldn't have been nicer but then once we decided we weren't going to go through with it she turned on us like a light switch. Completely rolled her eyes at us and abruptly left the table without saying so much as a good bye. We would have been pissed if the whole thing wasn't such a spectacle. What a joke!
The husband seemed like such a psycho. Completely checked out emotionally from his family. The non-relationship he had with his eldest son from a previous marriage was very telling. He doesn't deal with anyone unless he can get something out of the deal. When he hired his son as a VP at his company, it was the only time they even talked to each other and only about business.
The way he treated his new wife and children was horrible and I felt bad for Jackie because her asshole husband was emotionally abusing her. He lorded himself over everyone and whenever he didn't get his way he'd either bark orders or become silent and petulant like a 6 year old giving you the cold shoulder. Very strange behavior from a man his age.
The daughter totally called it when she said that he treated their mother like a doormat. I guess Jackie puts up with it for the money but that's no way to live, I don't care how much money you have.
I simply don't get mega-houses. Fine, you can do anything with your money that you want (even if I think it's a waste), but what the fuck do you do with a house like that? It would be creepy with all the space that you're NOT in at any given time and the sheer distance from one end to the other. Lie living in a small shopping mall. Even if you have things you would use that take up space - an indoor pool, a high quality gym, an actual movie theater, a bowling alley, it still seems too big.
$100 million?!?! For much less than than, You could have a huge, but not freakish (let's say 10,000 sq foot) home in Florida where the business is based, a good-sized place in NYC, maybe a modest home somewhere on the West Coast, and maybe a home somewhere overseas.