The diamond hands that are still holding GameStop stock had a rough Thursday, with the stock tumbling more than 40 percent as the short squeeze that went viral appears to be falling back to Earth. But regardless of what happens to retail stocks like GameStop and AMC moving forward, you’re almost certain to see the Reddit stock market saga in the movies in due time.
Our own Brian Grubb had some ideas about the cast of a Reddit-GameStop film, but those in Hollywood apparently have other ideas for at least one movie that will likely be based on a yet-to-be-written book. It’s all, unsurprisingly, speculative right now. But money is money and there’s certainly some to be made in telling a story that’s captivated millions in recent weeks.
But there’s apparently trouble on the Reddit boards where the short squeeze was engineered. According to the New York Times, moderators on r/WallStreetBets have cast the board into chaos and may have fractured the group’s solidarity that created the stock craze in the first place. And the reason may be, at least in part, over who gets to profit off of the movie rights to the story.
As the Times laid out on Thursday, some of the board’s moderators were apparently talking to a writer who had Hollywood ties and seemed to be writing a book, and maybe eventually a script, about the stock craze.
One moderator said he was in touch with Ben Mezrich, an author of the book that became the movie “The Social Network,” who last week secured deals to write a book and help with a movie about the GameStop saga, according to screenshots from the forum shared with The Times.
“Oof we gotta go fast i think,” another moderator wrote back. “While the studios are competing.”
But word of those discussions made many in the group wonder who exactly had the rights to the story, and who gets to cash in on the story behind the stock that’s caused market chaos. The board’s creator, a man named Jamie Rogozinski, lost control of r/WallStreetBets in 2020 and still tried to secure movie rights despite his lack of involvement in moderation in recent months.
“We suddenly find out these formerly inactive moderators are trying to *literally* sell the story of how they built the subreddit and undermine us,” zjz wrote in an email to The Times.
In a post to WallStreetBets on Wednesday night, which was quickly removed, zjz also wrote: “We’ve been taken hostage by the top mods. They left for years and came back when they smelled money.”
That led to escalating recriminations and insults that soon went beyond a movie deal. Some began criticizing the top moderators for moves they had made to raise their profile, like creating a Twitter account and hiring a public relations representative. Some also made death threats.
It’s yet another wild wrinkle to a chaotic story that does have a pretty interesting, and unanswered, question about ownership of a story that’s quite literally taken millions of investors to make happen. And while the board fights over this, they could very well lose their market position because solidarity was so important in their movement and activities.
The whole report has a lot of details about the parties involved and what’s likely to happen when it comes to the film rights to the saga. And what seems likely is there ends up being more than one movie version of the tale in the first place, but also that the battle to see who profits off the saga on the silver screen becomes part of the story we end up seeing at theaters, too.
[via The New York Times]