Eventually, nine of the kidnappers were arrested, including high ranking members of the ‘Ndrangheta. Vittoriano Rastelli/Corbis/Getty ImagesJohn Paul Getty III with his mother at Rome’s Police Headquarters after being recovered from kidnappers. John Paul Getty III with his mother at Rome’s Police Headquarters after being recovered from kidnappers. The film All the Money in the World, released in 2017, garnered lots of buzz for the scandal around the kidnapping of the grandson of oil man J. Paul Getty who refused to pay the $US17 million ($A23 million) ransom. His favorite grandson's abduction is not reason enough for him to part with any of his fortune. The family’s money was made in the early 1950s when John Paul Getty III’s grandfather, J. Paul Getty, founded the Getty Oil Company, one of the largest in the United States at the time. Though he was born in the US, he was an enormous Anglophile who moved to the United Kingdom in the late 50s. From a young age, John Paul Getty III was something of an embarrassment for the family. Despite his immense wealth, he was known to be a consummate miser, even installing pay phones at his luxurious Sutton Place estate in Surrey. Getty III was held to ransom, but his … [10] As time wore on, Paul's treatment by his captors grew worse; they took away his radio, killed a bird that he had taken as a pet, and began playing Russian roulette against his head. Getty was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Jean Paul grew up and founded Getty Oil here in 1967. He had known her and her twin sister Jutta since before his kidnapping, and he was 18 years old when his son Balthazar was born in 1975. In the film, J. Paul Getty is played by Christopher Plummer and John Paul Getty III is played by Charlie Plummer (as an adult) and Charlie Shotwell (at age 7). He supported himself through selling art and jewelry he created and posing nude for magazines. He had been in poor health since his 1981 drug overdose. John Paul Getty III died in 2011 at the age of 54 from illnesses resulting from the stroke. The memoir of his fifth wife, Teddy, reported how Getty … [19], Getty died at his father's estate at Wormsley Park, Buckinghamshire, on February 5, 2011, aged 54, following a long illness. Most of the ransom money was never recovered. Bettmann/Getty ImagesJ. In July 1971 his stepmother died of a heroin overdose in Rome,[4] and his father moved back to the United Kingdom, partly to escape charges of drug possession which he was facing in Italy. KNOWN for their billions of dollars, kidnapping scandal and tragic deaths, the Getty family story shows money cannot buy happiness. The Getty family, which has a net worth of $5 billion, has a storied history in Los Angeles. Married three times, Getty Jr. fathered five children, four with his first wife Abigail “Gail” Harris, the eldest being kidnapped victim John Paul Getty III. Hulton Archive/Getty ImagesJ. [5] He never fully recovered and remained severely handicapped for the rest of his life. That’s because John Paul Getty III was no average teenager: he was the heir to the massive Getty fortune and belonged to one of the richest families in the world. Gabe is a New York City-based writer and an Editorial Intern at All That Is Interesting. Then, learn about how North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il once kidnapped a director to make Pulgasari, the most ridiculous movie ever. In the 20th century they were heavily involved in the petroleum industry.The Getty family is of Scots-Irish ancestry from their patrilineal lineage, their ancestors having migrated to North America from Cullavmor, County Londonderry, Ireland. [11], In November 1973, a daily newspaper received an envelope containing a lock of hair, a human ear, and a threat from the kidnappers to mutilate Paul further unless they were paid $3.2 million (equivalent to $18.4 million in 2019[9]). Throughout the deliberations between his family and his kidnappers, John Paul Getty III was kept chained to a stake in a cave in the Calabrian mountains where he was regularly beaten and tortured. [1][2] He spent most of his childhood in Rome while his father headed the Italian division of the Getty family oil business. For much more about John Paul Getty III’s kidnapping and the Getty family’s dark history, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday. A shocking scandal hit the family was when J Paul's 16-year-old grandson John Paul Getty lll was kidnapped by mobsters and held captive for months in 1973. Getty was kidnapped in the Piazza Farnesein Rome at 3 a.m. on July 10, 1973, when he was 16. The 1973 kidnapping of Paul Getty—the 16-year-old grandson of the one-time richest man in the world—is the subject of Trust, which the Getty family’s lawyer calls “cruel and mean-spirited.” Next, read the eerie story of Bobby Dunbar, the boy who vanished then came back as a new child. Born in 1892, he died in 1976, leaving a dysfunctional family plagued by drug overdoses, a kidnapping, illicit affairs and scandals. The letter read, "This is Paul's first ear. The family are planning to sue. [1], A. J. Quinnell used Getty's kidnapping as one piece of inspiration for his book Man on Fire. Don’t let me be killed.”. [10], John Paul Getty Jr. asked his father J. Paul Getty for the money, but his grandfather refused, arguing that his 13 other grandchildren could also become kidnap targets if he paid. His parents divorced in 1964 when he was eight years old, and his father married model and actress Talitha Pol in 1966. The Story Of Ed Gein — The Killer Who Used Human Body Parts In Strange Ways, Harvard Holds 'Anal 101' Workshop As Part Of Annual Sex Week, What Stephen Hawking Thinks Threatens Humankind The Most, 27 Raw Images Of When Punk Ruled New York, Join The All That's Interesting Weekly Dispatch. The Nov. 20 passing of the Getty family … North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il once kidnapped a director to make. The scandal the movie is based on … Through this company, J. Paul Getty rose to be the richest man of his era. And the curse surrounding the mega-rich dynasty has struck again, with the death of John Gilbert Getty, aged 52. The couple divorced in 1993. [21] The book was adapted to the 2017 film All the Money in the World, directed by Sir Ridley Scott. "[7] He was blindfolded, transported, and imprisoned in a cave in Calabria. However, the notoriously cheap magnate was able to cut a deal with the kidnappers and reportedly paid out just under $3 million for the return of his grandson. However these high ranking members easily beat their charges, and only two men were ultimately convicted. [1] According to his girlfriend Martine Schmidt, he had toyed with the idea of getting himself kidnapped by petty criminals when the couple was struggling to make ends meet, but had changed his mind because both of them started getting work modelling for photographers. John Paul Getty III's sister Ariadne says recent film and TV adaptations of her brother's 1973 kidnapping portray the family in a mean and demonizing light. When a ransom note was received for $17million (£11.9million), some family members thought it a ploy. In 1914, he gave his son, Jean Paul Getty, a $10 thousand Despite being crowned the richest man in the country by Forbes in 1957, J. Paul developed a reputation for being a terrible cheapskate, famously going so far as to temporarily install a payphone for guests to use at his house in London. Eldest of the four children of John Paul Getty, Jr. Paul Getty. [5] The Italian adult magazine Playmen paid him $1,000 to appear naked in a spread and on the cover of its August 1973 issue, released a month after he was kidnapped. John Paul Getty III leaving his father’s memorial in 2003. John Gilbert Getty, the grandson of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty and cousin of actor Balthazar Getty, has died at the age of 52. The 80-year-old J. Paul Getty reportedly replied to this request, “I have 14 other grandchildren and if I pay one penny now, then I will have 14 kidnapped grandchildren.”. [5], Getty was permanently affected by his kidnapping and suffered from drug and alcohol addiction during the years that followed. The movie itself explores a dark and divisive subject: The Getty family's response to the tragic kidnapping and ransom of 16-year-old John Paul Getty III. [14] At his mother's suggestion, he called his grandfather to thank him for paying the ransom, but J. Paul Getty refused to come to the phone. His grandfather was reluctant to pay, but, after his severed ear was received by a newspaper, he negotiated a payment of $2.2 million, and Getty was released five months after being kidnapped. [13], After Paul's ear was sent, his grandfather agreed to pay no more than $2.2 million (equivalent to $12.7 million in 2019[9])—the maximum amount that was tax deductible—and lent the remainder to his son, who was responsible for repaying the sum at four percent interest. The series focuses on the kidnapping of John Paul Getty … [5][15] In 1977, Getty had an operation to rebuild the ear that his kidnappers had cut off. The Getty family of the United States identify with George Franklin Getty and his son Jean Paul Getty as their patriarchs. Getty III had often joked that he would fake his own kidnapping to extract some amount of money from his grandfather’s miserly grasp. The free-spirited teenager, who went by Paul, had been living in Rome as his father J. Paul “Eugene” Getty II oversaw the Italian side of the family business. The patriarch of the Getty family, George Getty, was born to American immigrants in 1855. [14] Two of the kidnappers were convicted and sent to prison; the others were acquitted for lack of evidence, including the 'Ndrangheta bosses. Bruno Vincent/Getty ImagesJohn Paul Getty III leaving his father’s memorial in 2003. Getty III never fully recovered from this stroke and was severely handicapped for the rest of his life. [17][18] Afterwards, his mother cared for him, and she sued his father for $28,000 a month to cover his medical needs. While living in Rome in 1973, he was kidnapped by the 'Ndrangheta and held for a $17 million ransom. John Paul Getty III (/ˈɡɛti/; November 4, 1956 – February 5, 2011) was the grandson of American oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, who was once the richest man in the world. Despite his money, he was forever scarred by the harrowing experience of his abduction and the cruel indifference of his family. They also sent a note from the young Getty saying, “Dear Mummy, since Monday I have fallen into the hands of kidnappers. Getty developed an addiction to drugs and alcohol soon after, eventually leading to an overdose and stroke which left him severely disabled for the rest of his life. [6], Getty was kidnapped in the Piazza Farnese in Rome at 3 a.m. on July 10, 1973, when he was 16. J. Paul Getty III with his right ear missing. [16], In 1999, Getty and several other members of his family became citizens of the Republic of Ireland in return for investments of approximately £1 million each, under a law which has since been repealed. J. Paul Getty was once the richest person on earth. "Trust" is a new FX series premiering March 25 about the Getty family, one of the world's wealthiest and most notorious clans. However as the days went on and the demands continued, Getty Jr. began to take the situation seriously. He was the richest man in the world, but when billionaire John Paul Getty's 16-year-old grandson was kidnapped, he refused to pay a dime in ransom. In 1973, the oil baron's 16-year-old grandson John Paul Getty III, was kidnapped in Italy by gangsters who demanded a ransom. It was during this period that Getty III was snatched by the ‘Ndrangheta. Paul remained in Italy where he lived a bohemian lifestyle, living in a squat, frequenting nightclubs and taking part in left-wing demonstrations. [13] Getty's biographer John Pearson attributed his later alcoholism to the large amounts of brandy that he was plied with in the last few months of his captivity to keep him warm and numb his pain. According to his girlfriend Martine Schmidt, he had toyed with the idea of getting himself kidnapped by petty criminals when the couple was struggling to make ends meet, but had changed his mind because both of them started getting work modelling for photographers. [22] The story of the kidnapping was also adapted into the 2018 television series Trust, produced by Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle, with Harris Dickinson as John Paul Getty III.[23]. By the age of 15, Getty III was living a bohemian lifestyle, taking part in left-wing demonstrations, going to nightclubs, and drinking and smoking to excess. [1], Getty acted in some European films, playing supporting parts in Raúl Ruiz's The Territory and in Wim Wenders's The State of Things. In other words he will arrive in little pieces.”. When he called his grandfather to thank him … The kidnapping had a traumatic effect on the young Getty and likely contributed to the alcoholism and drug addiction that ravaged his life. The junior Getty was a philanthropist and also worked for his father’s company as the director of Getty Oil Italiana. His dismembered ear was reconstructed through a series of surgeries. She stated that "Paul didn't want to be kidnapped anymore, but [the kidnappers] were following him. While the ‘Ndrangheta, a Calabrian Mafia-style organization, had been kidnapping people for ransom in Northern Italy for years at this point, this time they thought they had finally hit the jackpot. He was blindfolded, transported, and imprisoned in … But it was not until three months after his kidnapping, once his ear and a lock of his hair was mailed, along with a reduced ransom of $3 million, that the rest of his family followed suit. John Paul Getty III, grandson of oil billionaire, art collector and philanthropist John Paul Getty Jnr. Inside tragedy of the Getty family – from violent kidnapping to heroin overdose November 24, 2020 The death of John Gilbert Getty, grandson of oil tycoon J Paul Getty, is the latest in a long string of tragedies for the family. From oil and money to sex and drugs, the Gettys have seen it … Two years later Paul, then 18, married his … The True Story Of The John Paul Getty III Kidnapping As the grandson of one of the world's richest men, John Paul Getty III spent months being tortured and beaten until a ransom was negotiated. [5] Paul was found alive on December 15, 1973, in a petrol station of Lauria in the province of Potenza shortly after the ransom was paid. Immediately, many members of the family and even several police officers doubted the veracity of the kidnapping. Enjoy this article on the kidnapping of John Paul Getty III? “Everything except his mind.”. Of even that smaller sum, he required his son to pay back the ransom money at a rate of 4% interest. They cut off Getty III’s ear and sent it to a local newspaper along with a lock of his hair and a note stating “This is Paul’s ear. If within ten days the family still believes that this is a joke mounted by him, then the other ear will arrive. Vittoriano Rastelli/Corbis/Getty Images John Paul Getty III with his mother at Rome’s Police Headquarters after being recovered from kidnappers. [8] The kidnappers issued a ransom note demanding $17 million (equivalent to $98 million in 2019[9]) in exchange for his safe return; however, the family suspected a plot by the rebellious teenager to extract money from his miserly grandfather. [5] In 1981, he drank a Valium, methadone, and alcohol cocktail which caused liver failure and a stroke, leaving him quadriplegic, partially blind, and unable to speak. The latest death on Friday last week is part of the long and sorry saga of the Getty clan, which includes the 1973 Mafia kidnapping of a 16-year-old John Paul Getty III. "[12] Paul's health began to decline rapidly as his wound became infected, combined with pneumonia caused by the cold winter temperatures which were descending. Having spent his 17th birthday in captivity, Getty III was discovered on a snow-covered motorway between Rome and Naples on December 15, 1973, shortly after the ransom was paid. At 3 AM on July 10, 1973, 16-year-old John Paul Getty III was snatched up by members of an Italian organized crime ring called the ‘Ndrangheta while lounging around at the famous Piazza Farnese in Rome. (Getty Images) It has been suggested that this section be, St. George's British International School, "Obituary: John Paul Getty III, grandson of oil tycoon, who had ear cut off in kidnapping", "Style » Talitha Getty: The Myth and the Muse", J. Paul Getty III, 54, Dies; Had Ear Cut Off by Captors, "The Risqué Italian Magazine That J. Paul Getty III Appeared In Has A Controversial History", "Trust: Did Paul Getty Really Stage His Kidnapping, as 'Trust' Suggests? When his mother protested that she did not have that kind of money as she had been divorced from J. Paul Getty Jr. for over nine years, the kidnappers reportedly said, “Get it from London.” This was a reference to her ex-husband and ex-father-in-law who lived there. His grandfather, Jean Paul Getty (Christopher Plummer), is the richest human in the world, a billionaire oil magnate, but he's notoriously miserly. He was notoriously frugal, negotiating his grandson’s Italian kidnapping ransom in 1973. In November, four months since he was first abducted, the kidnappers decided to get serious. He was kidnapped by Italian gangsters when he was a teenager in Rome in 1973. It's no surprise that his family relationships were fraught. The True Story Of The John Paul Getty III Kidnapping. ", "Trust: The Story Behind Brendan Fraser's Brilliant, Oddball Character", "J. Paul Getty III dies at 54; scion of oil dynasty", "Jean Paul Getty III Dead; 5 Facts on the Oil Heir and Father of Actor Balthazar Getty", "Be not overcome by evil but overcome evil with good': The Theology of Evil in, "FX's 'Trust' Casts Harris Dickinson as J. Paul Getty III", Skar øret av John Paul Getty III (photo of Getty's severed ear), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=John_Paul_Getty_III&oldid=991378335, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with Norwegian-language sources (no), Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Grandson of J. Paul Getty, victim of kidnapping, This page was last edited on 29 November 2020, at 19:08. His captors were alarmed at this sudden decline and gave him large doses of penicillin to treat the infection, which caused him to develop an allergy to the antibiotic and further affected his health. Nine men were arrested for their alleged involvement in the kidnapping, but only two men were convicted. His grandad J … Paul Getty III with his right ear missing. At this point, Getty senior relented and decided to pay the kidnappers. [20] The 1995 book Painfully Rich: the Outrageous Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Heirs of J. Paul Getty by John Pearson includes significant content on Getty's kidnapping ordeal. If we don’t get some money within 10 days, the other ear will arrive. Getty III was finally released and turned up at a gas station in the Italian countryside on December 15th, 1973. [3] Getty remained in Italy with his mother Gail and attended St. George's British International School in Rome. One son he did not promote within the family business was J Paul Getty II (or “John Paul Getty Jr”), father of soon-to-be kidnapping victim J Paul Getty III. In 1981, at the age of 25, he suffered a debilitating stroke after taking a Valium, methadone, and alcohol cocktail which caused him liver failure and a stroke, leaving him quadriplegic and partially blind. [4], In early 1972, Getty was expelled from St. George's after painting offensive six-foot-high wording in a hallway of the school, aimed at the school's headmaster. [5] The kidnappers sent a second demand, but its arrival was delayed by an Italian postal strike. [5], Nine of the kidnappers were apprehended, including Girolamo Piromalli and Saverio Mammoliti, high-ranking members of the 'Ndrangheta, an organized crime organization in Calabria. The cash-tight teenager had previously toyed with the idea of staging a kidnapping to extract funds from his rich grandfather, J. Paul Getty. How did the kidnapping happen? [1], In 1974, Getty married German Gisela Martine Zacher (née Schmidt) who was five months pregnant. By 1987, however, he was able to regain some degree of autonomy, and was able to ski when strapped to a metal frame. He had considerable artistic talent and reportedly earned a living making jewelry, selling his paintings and cartoons, and appearing in movies as an extra. He spent the rest of his days in his house in Beverly Hills, which had been converted with his grandfather’s fortune into a high tech private hospital. The incredible saga of the Getty family, led by J. Paul Getty who was once the richest man in the world, spans the twentieth century. Masked men kidnap a teenage boy named John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer). He was a lawyer who eventually became an oil man accumulating vast riches. Raised in Rome while his father worked for the Italian division of the company, Getty III was kicked out of a number of English boarding schools, once for painting the hallway of his school in a stunt inspired by news reports of the Manson Family. J. Paul’s son, J. Paul Getty Jr., inherited his father’s love for the British Isles, though not his stingy tendencies. She stated that "Paul didn't want to be kidnapped anymore, but [the kidnappers] were following him." [16] He and his wife lived for a time in New York City where they consorted with Andy Warhol's art crowd. Though he did not have the means to raise $17 million himself, he contacted his father and asked him for the money. Just two days after his disappearance, his mother received an anonymous call demanding $17 million in exchange for his safe return. Jean Paul Getty, eller J. Paul Getty, född 15 december 1892 i Minneapolis, Minnesota, död 6 juni 1976 på Sutton Place i Surrey, Storbritannien, var en amerikansk oljemagnat och konstsamlare, grundare och ägare av oljebolaget Getty Oil. 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