The worlds of online culture and Wall Street finance spectacularly collided to create the meme stock saga. In the eye of the storm was GameStop, the ailing video games retailer that underwent a massive resurgence after day traders from Reddit's WallStreetBets snapped up its stock to counter the hedge funds who were shorting it. The resulting stock market volatility saw the surging shares repeatedly halted and spurred a Congressional hearing featuring the drama's main players, from Robinhood's Vlad Tenev to Reddit co-founder Steve Huffman. Sensing an opportunity, Hollywood quickly greenlit several projects. But ahead of the competing movies, the meme stock phenomenon is getting the documentary treatment...again.
According to Deadline, Discovery+ has tapped the real Wolf of Wall Street Jordan Belfort to narrate its upcoming doc, tentatively titled GameStop: The Wall Street Hijack. The film — described as a David versus Goliath story that focuses on the social media uprising — will premiere in the UK on April 8th before making its way overseas. It follows the Hulu documentary Gamestopped from ABC News which debuted earlier this month.
“I’ve found some very creative ways to make money on Wall Street, but I’ve got to say, personally, I love the fact that everyone now has the ability to organize and give the Wall Street players a run for their money,” Belfort said.
At first glance, the Discovery+ doc sounds like it could wind up contributing to the myth-making that ignores the story's more manipulative elements, including the role of bots in boosting meme stocks. A lawsuit also accused Keith Gill (a Redditor who drove the GameStop boom) of deceiving amateur investors into buying GameStop shares while hiding his professional financial background. On the flip side, plenty of regular folk lost money betting on GameStop and other viral stocks.
Regardless, the new doc is likely intended to draw a younger crowd to Discovery's burgeoning streaming service. The platform arrived late to the streaming party and leans heavily on documentaries and reality TV from channels like TLC, Food Network and Animal Planet as well as content from A&E, History Channel and Lifetime.