Kaleidoscope: what true story is the Netflix series inspired by?

Netflix subscribers started the new year watching Kaleidoscope, a one-of-a-kind series that tells the story of a dizzying heist over eight episodes that can be viewed in any order. And if the plot of the series seemed a bit far-fetched to you, hang in there: it’s all true! Well almost. Kaleidoscope is freely inspired by a true story, and we explain to you what really happened.

Available on the N rouge platform since January 1, the series Kaleidoscope follows a group of criminals led by Leo Pap (Giancarlo Esposito, seen in The Mandalorian), which aims to carry out a hold-up to 7 billion dollars. Created by Eric Garcia, the Netflix series follows Pap and his band of thieves, including Roger Salas (Rufus Sewell), Ava Mercer (Paz Vega) and Bob Goodwin (Jai Courtney), as they attempt, during a storm, to break into the strong room which contains the jackpot in bearer bonds. And if the series, which you can watch in the order of your choice, could only be a particularly well-crafted fictional story, the inspiration of its creator is nevertheless very anchored in reality, because an incredible story true hides behind the Netflix series…

The true story that inspired Kaleidoscope

We thought it was in movies like Ocean’s Eleven or Italian robbery that the showrunner Eric Garcia had gone to draw his inspiration. Nay! Kaleidoscope is actually freely inspired by an event that occurred during Hurricane Sandy in 2012, a disaster that caused extensive damage in the Caribbean and on the east coast of the United States, causing the tragic death of 233 souls in the process . And while the event itself was widely covered by the press, something did happen in the heart of the storm that didn’t make the headlines. Indeed, after Hurricane Sandy passed over New York City, flooding occurred in a large basement below downtown. And that basement, operated by some of Wall Street’s biggest firms, was used as a storage space, and contained a vault in which were stored bearer bonds worth $70 billion. And if you don’t quite see what that entails, comedian Giancarlo Esposito, who plays the brains of the operation in Kaleidoscopeexplained to the platform that makes tudum what you can do with bearer bonds:

“They can be used like cash to buy anything. From stolen jewelry to works of art circulating on the black market. If they’re not marked, they can’t be traced. If you have them in your possession, they are yours.”

But then, where did the billions that disappeared during Hurricane Sandy in 2012 go? Reality is unfortunately less incredible than fiction.

Where did the $70 billion go?

“The series is loosely inspired by an event that could have happened”explained Eric Garcia to Tudum before adding that the hurricane would have been according to him a “perfect cover” for a large breakage. When he discovered the story that happened on Wall Street, an idea began to germinate in his mind:

“After Hurricane Sandy, $70 billion in unregistered bearer bonds was flooded and lost. My first thought reading all of this was, ‘Oh, someone got away with $70 billion and is using Hurricane Sandy as a very good excuse'”

If the characters and the plot of the series are fictional, the disappearance of a large sum of money during a natural disaster is not… But this sum was in fact found quite quickly. In reality, the bearer bonds were simply drowned under water and soaked. Two weeks after Hurricane Sandy, a team of specialists descended into the flooded basement to fish for bearer bonds that had been washed away. Closely monitored, the team of professionals collected and packed the precious vouchers, before storing them in freezer trucks which transported them to Texas where they were treated to prevent them from being completely destroyed. Dried, sterilized and even freeze-dried, bearer bonds were saved and returned to their owners.

The scenario of Kaleidoscope is therefore very far from the true story. But if you like stories of robberies in the middle of a storm, know that there are two feature films to (re)discover: hell rainreleased in 1998, with Christian Slater and Morgan Freeman, and Hurricanereleased in 2018 and directed by Rob Cohen, to whom we owe the very muscular xXx and the first Fast and Furious.

Source : netflix

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Kaleidoscope: what true story is the Netflix series inspired by?


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