Using TikTok, Nadine Macaluso is revealing The Wolf of Wall Street’s real-life, less-than-glamorous backstory. Martin Scorsese’s 2013 biographical drama, Naomi Lapaglia, which stars Margot Robbie as the former model who is now a marriage and family therapist, was inspired by the real-life Naomi Lapaglia.
However, Macaluso has changed her focus to provide insight into her relationship with the real Jordan Belfort (whose memoir was adapted to make the movie) and the veracity of the film. Macaluso frequently uses her TikTok to educate women on abusive relationships by deconstructing concepts like gaslighting and trauma bonds.
“Can you imagine having a movie made about your life, about your love life that was a Greek tragedy? It’s not fun,” said Macaluso in one video. “If you look at it through Jordan’s lens, it was really accurate. I think that if you look at it through my lens, it wasn’t, and that makes sense because that was actually how our marriage was.” The two were married for 14 years before divorcing in 2005, with Malcaluso citing domestic abuse.
When asked about how she first encountered Belfort, Macaluso revealed that the movie sequence in which Donnie Azoff, played by Jonah Hill, exposes himself to her was based on real-life former stock trader Danny Porush. She said, “It was actually pretty similar to the movie. I was 22 years old and modeling and my boyfriend at the time said, ‘Do you want to go to this party in West Hampton at this house on the beach?’ and I was like ‘sure.’”
Everyone was “acting pretty odd,” she said, and was “Quaalude-ed out.” “They were all with their wives, and they were saying dirty and strange things,” she said. Also accurate was the scenario where someone genuinely exposed themselves to me. That honestly made me frightened. We immediately left the party after I remarked to my partner at the time, who was 22, “we have to leave this party.”
The Wolf of Wall Street follows Leonardo DiCaprio’s portrayal of Belfort, a corrupt stockbroker in New York City, throughout his dishonest career. The movie received positive reviews upon its release and was nominated for eight MTV Movie Awards and five Academy Awards, with Jonah Hill taking home the prize for Best Comedic Performance.