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Could someone explain the whole "Rebecca" mess on Broadway to me?

I would prefer to have it explained here then go wading through the thirty million Broadway threads.

So it turns out that several of the investors never even existed. Why did this Mark Hotton guy make them all up? What was in it for him? Was it a thing like the plot of "The Producers," where if the show flopped he could write all the expenses off and never be held accountable? or does anyone even know what he hoped to get out of it?

And will the musical ever be performed in NYC anyway? It's been a big hit all over Europe, and the plot of the novel seems perfect for a musical.

by Anonymousreply 910/15/2012

Thanks for posting this, OP. I'd like to know too but I'm too lazy to wade through Broadwayworld message boards.

by Anonymousreply 110/10/2012

I think it was only one investor who didn't exist, but he was supposed to be giving millions to put it on. At least it was that way last week when I heard them discussing it on NPR.

by Anonymousreply 210/10/2012

Playbill has the story. A guy named Mark Hotten is being blamed for bringing in the phantom show backers via e-mail introductions.

by Anonymousreply 310/11/2012

Why would this Mark Hotten guy have done this? What did he stand to gain?

by Anonymousreply 410/11/2012


by Anonymousreply 510/11/2012

An old lesbian burned it down.

by Anonymousreply 610/11/2012

In a shadowy plot worthy of Mrs. Danvers, the sinister housekeeper in "Rebecca," a New York businessman was charged on Monday with defrauding the drama's Broadway musical production by creating a fictional cast of characters in an elaborate financial ruse.

Mark Hotton "faked lives, faked companies and even staged a fake death, pretending that one imaginary investor had suddenly died of malaria," Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.

Hotton, 46, a stockbroker and businessman, was charged with two counts of wire fraud in his financing scheme for the $12 million (7.5 million pounds) "Rebecca: The Musical". He faces up to 20 years in prison for each count if convicted.

Bharara called the fraud "stranger-than-fiction" in bringing a case against Hotton that involves the sort of deceit and mysterious characters that helped make "Rebecca" a popular novel and Oscar-winning film.

A dark, gothic thriller based on a 1938 Daphne du Maurier novel, "Rebecca" had been slated to make its Broadway debut this fall but has now been postponed because of the financing shortfall and scandal.

by Anonymousreply 710/15/2012

The latest development in the troubled production throws into question the future of a show that debuted in 2006 in Vienna, Austria, but never made the transition to London or Broadway. It's bizarre collapse could undercut any chance at financing - or may fuel even greater interest in it.

Earlier this year, after the play had fallen nearly $5 million short of funding, Hotton portrayed himself as an 11th-hour hero. He told the show's producers he could raise the cash - and appeared to deliver with new investors from England who, Bharara said, actually were a quartet of "deep-pocketed phantoms."

Hotton allegedly fabricated email addresses and investor websites to convince the play's producers that he had raised the cash and in return received more than $60,000 in commissions and fees.

But the "investors" were never available to meet the producers or speak by phone, and when producers began pressing Hotton for the promised cash over the summer, Hotton "orchestrated the false illness, hospitalization and untimely 'death'" of one of the phony investors, Bharara said.

That was just the first act of multiple deceptions, Bharara said. Hotton then claimed to have flown to London in August to meet with a mysterious executor known as "Wexler" representing the dead man's estate to ensure the financing would still come through. Prosecutors say Hotton never left the United States.

By September, Hotton had promised to broker a $1.1 million loan from a real estate company and put up his own property as collateral to ensure the show would go on. The real estate company and its principals were also fictional, Bharara said.

by Anonymousreply 810/15/2012

"In his alleged scheme to defraud investors, Mark Hotton wrote, directed and starred in the work of fiction he took to Broadway," FBI Acting Assistant Director-in-Charge Mary E. Galligan said in a statement. "A convincing portrayal on stage can earn you a Tony. A convincing act that fleeces a production's backers can earn you a prison term."

Hotton's attorney, Gerald Shargel, was not immediately available for comment.

A 1940 Alfred Hitchcock film adaptation of "Rebecca," starring Laurence Olivier and Joan Fontaine, won an Academy Award for best picture.

It is remembered for its opening line "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again," referring to the English country estate where the noir thriller takes place, and the menacing Mrs. Danvers, who ultimately sets Manderley ablaze.

by Anonymousreply 910/15/2012
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