On May 20th, HBO will release Wizard of Lies, a new film about the infamous, money-laundering financier Bernie Madoff based on the 2010 book of the same title by former New York Times business reporter Diana Henriques. In the HBO adaptation, Robert DeNiro stars as Madoff and Michelle Pfieffer portrays his wife, Ruth. To prepare for the role, the actress reportedly met with Ruth at her home in Old Greenwich, Connecticut.
According to The New York Post, Ruth Madoff’s life in Connecticut is very different than the one she used to lead on New York’s tony Upper East Side. Ruth did not provide comment for the Post article. The publication maintains that she now resides near her grandchildren, and has taken to going on walks by the beach and regularly visiting a local bakery.
Ruth was, the Post claims, effectively shunned from her social circle in New York — Donald Trump refused to rent her an apartment after her husband’s arrest, and even her hair salon banned her from its premises. “She has suffered beyond imagination,” Ira Sorkin, a lawyer for Bernie, said. “She couldn’t walk out of her apartment to get a cup of coffee without being harassed.”
Bernie Madoff shattered the lives of thousands of people who had trusted him with their life savings. Some say that Ruth is another one of his victims. After her husband’s arrest, Ruth was forced to hand over millions in assets. Her sons refused to speak to her for a time, confused by her loyalty to their father. Her eldest son, Mark, committed suicide in 2014.
But questions about what Ruth did and did not know — was she complicit in her husband’s crimes? — have swirled for years. Michelle Pfieffer, for one, believes in Ruth’s innocence. “In all the research I did, there wasn’t one person who knew the facts who thought Ruth was aware of anything,” the actress told Town and Country.
Ruth has never been charged with a crime.
Read the full story at The New York Post.