Actor Johnny Depp, of Edward Scissorhands and Pirates of the Caribbean fame, has been linked with a new film said to be a biopic of the late cryptocurrency billionaire Matthew Mellon.

Although it hasn’t been confirmed, sources reportedly told the Mail Online that Depp is understood to be interested in the role and that “there is a screenplay being shopped”.

Mellon was a descendant of Judge Thomas Mellon, founder of the Mellon Bank, which became the largest bank outside of Wall Street in the late 19th century. It has now become part of the Bank of New York Mellon Corporation. Having been named Finance Chairman by State Chairman Ed Cox in May 2011, Mellon saw a USD 2 million investment in Ripple (XRP) become a USD 1 billion fortune in 2015. It was said to be his first real business success.

He mixed with high fliers and socialites in Manhattan and London until his death in Mexico this April where he died before he was due to check into in a rehabilitation center. He suffered a fatal heart attack after taking ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic drink made out of vine and roots and used as a traditional spiritual medicine in ceremonies among indigenous peoples in the Amazon basin region. He suffered from addiction in the months before his death with a USD 100,000 monthly prescription habit.

He married into another banking dynasty in his British wife Tamara whom he met at a Narcotics Anonymous meeting. and quickly became part of London’s high society with friends such as Hugh Grant and Elizabeth Hurley. His first wife founded the successful shoe company, Jimmy Choo.

He went on to date “Kick” Kennedy, the daughter of Robert F Kennedy Jr, after his second marriage to Nicole Hanley, which also ended in divorce in 2015. It was at the end of this marriage he went through his cryptocurrency phase.

“Matthew was very interested in the idea of the blockchain and what Bitcoin could be very early on… He didn’t understand the underlying 0s and 1s of the technology but understood that the technology could make things cheaper, faster, more efficient,” said David Marshack, who was an adviser to Coin.co.

“He risked everything on it and toward the end of last year, it exploded and made him an awful lot of money… It made a bunch of people second-guess their early criticisms.”

The family of the banking heir are reportedly divided about Mellon’s life appearing on the big screen and an undisclosed source has said that some “are horrified by the idea… The last thing they want is the Mellon legacy portrayed on-screen”.

The role would certainly offer Depp plenty of material if the film came to fruition. One friend of Mellon’s commented, “This may be fulfilling a dream of Matthew’s. He would have loved this idea… He used to say, how cool would it be to have a movie about my crazy life?”

 

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