Ridley Scott is set to direct a new film project that has nothing to do with aliens. The film is called All the Money in the World, and it centers around true life events surrounding the kidnapping of John Paul Getty III. I don't know if you're familiar with this story or not, but it's pretty intense. Here's a breakdown:
At 3 a.m. on 10 July 1973, Getty, then age 16, was kidnapped in the Piazza Farnese in Rome. A ransom note was received, demanding $17 million in exchange for his safe return. When that ransom message arrived, some family members suspected the kidnapping was merely a ploy by the rebellious youngster as he had frequently joked about staging his own kidnapping to extract money from his frugal grandfather. He was blindfolded and imprisoned in a mountain hideout. A second demand was received, but had been delayed by an Italian postal strike. John Paul Getty, Jr. asked his father for the money, but was refused. Getty Sr. argued that were he to pay the ransom, then his 14 other grandchildren could also be kidnapped. In November 1973, an envelope containing a lock of hair and a human ear was delivered to a daily newspaper with a threat of further mutilation of Paul, unless $3.2 million was paid: "This is Paul's ear. If we don't get some money within 10 days, then the other ear will arrive. In other words, he will arrive in little bits."
At this point Getty Sr. agreed to pay a ransom, although he would only pay $2.2 million, because that was the maximum amount that was tax deductible. He loaned the remainder to his son who was responsible for repaying the sum at 4% interest. The reluctant Getty Sr. negotiated a deal and got his grandson back for about $2.9 million. Getty III was found alive in a filling station of Lauria, in the province of Potenza, on 15 December 1973, shortly after the ransom was paid.
Natalie Portman is currently in talks to take on the role of Gail Harris, the mother of John who made the desperate attempt to get John Paul Getty Sr. to pay the ransom. This sounds like it will be a great role for Portman to take on after her awesome portrayal of Jackie Kennedy.
Portman and Scott have never worked together before, and I think they would make an awesome creative team. Hopefully everything works out for this project.