The Showtime crime drama ‘Ray Donovan’ is believed to have been based on the Hollywood fixer, Anthony Pellicano. While there’s some truth to that, Pellicano isn’t the only one who inspired the Showtime series. Find out more here!
- Ray Donovan is based on more than one Hollywood fixer
- Anthony Pellicano, the PI of the stars
- Where is Anthony Pellicano now?
‘Ray Donovan’ has gathered quite a name for itself in the past few years, and even after the end of its run, people are still in awe of the character. The Showtime series brought into light the kind of personal and professional lives the so-called “fixers” lead, and while most of the series is fictionalised it is inspired from the lives of real people. Keep reading to know more.
‘Ray Donovan’ is based on more than one Hollywood fixer
The Showtime hit series ‘Ray Donovan’ follows its titular character in his personal and professional life as he tries to find a balance. Ray Donovan is presented as “fixer” for high profile clients, who employ him to make problems go away. By that we mean, make problems go away in any way possible. That obviously includes legal and mostly illegal activities like bribing and threatening people for their lives. Interestingly, ‘Ray Donovan’ is believed to have been based on the life of the real-life Hollywood fixer, Anthony Pellicano. That might be partially true, but there have been others too who have contributed to the making of the character.
Fixers, and mostly Hollywood fixers, have existed since the invention of bread and are not new to the world. Although they are mostly known to work in the shadows, there have been a few cases that have been exposed in the courthouse. Liev Schreiber, the actor who plays the lead in ‘Ray Donovan’ said, “But I know that they’ve been around as long as Hollywood has been around. In the forties and fifties, these guys were a lot more prevalent … But still, there are jobs that need to get done that lawyers can’t handle, and they go to people like Ray”.
The fact is there have been more than one Anthony Pellicano in Hollywood and all of them have played a part in the creation of Ray Donovan. In fact, the creator of ‘Ray Donovan’, Ann Biderman, claims that it was not Anthony Pellicano who inspired her for the show and the character. Rather other notorious Hollywood fixers who had been in the game long before Pellicano had. Among the names she included were Fred Otash and Eddie Mannix, who turned out to be infamous Hollywood fixers.
Anthony Pellicano, the PI of the stars
Covering up crimes for rich influential people is what Ray Donovan is all about and Anthony Pellicano aka the “PI to the stars” seems to be exactly the one with whom the character resonates the most. During the primetime of Pellicano’s career, he had bagged clients as infamous as Chris Rock, Michael Jackson, Steven Spielberg, and Kevin Costner. Pellicano rose to fame first in 1972 after his claim of the discovery of the remains of the dead husband of Elizabeth Taylor that had been stolen from a suburban Chicago grave. Thirty years later, Pellicano found himself exposed for his activities when he threatened a reporter with a note and a dead fish for publishing unfavourable bits on two of his clients – Michael Ovitz, the studio head of Disney, and Steven Seagal.
Pellicano was arrested a second time for invading the privacy of actor Sylvester Stalone by tapping his telephone. Furthermore, tapes of Tom Cruise’s conversation with Nicole Kidman were also found in the Pellicano’s office supposedly during the time of the couple’s divorce. In 2018, Pellicano made a statement from prison where he mentioned helping many influential people get away with committing controversial things. He said, “Some people got away with a lot of things and made a lot of money because of me”. Make of that what you will!
Where is Anthony Pellicano now?
The real-life ‘Ray Donovan’, Anthony Pellicano, now 76, is finally free after 16 years of life in prison. Throughout his life of racketeering, extortion, and wiretapping, the Hollywood fixer had made great many influential and powerful friends. Naturally, there’s always a price associated with keeping the mouth shut. Although he cannot renew his license as a private detective being a convicted felon, with a little financial help from his friends he is doing well enough for himself. Living in a rented apartment in Los Angeles, the former Hollywood fixer has reportedly turned to some of his high profile friends who are helping him get by.
Did you know that ‘Ray Donovan’ was based on real-life Hollywood fixers? Let us know in the comments below!