In a recent profile in The New York Times, surviving members of the Getty family claim that the depiction of John Paul Getty (portrayed by Christopher Plummer in All the Money in the World and Donald Sutherland on Trust) and his grandson, John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer and Harris Dickinson, respectively) as wealth-obsessed schemers are "demonizing."
"It doesn't represent our [family's] values," Ariadne Getty told The New York Times of the new works.
Ariadne Getty is the sister of the late Getty III. He was kidnapped by the Italian mafia when Ariadne was just 11. In Trust, Getty III is depicted as complicit in his own kidnapping, whereas in ATMITW, he is completely innocent. Ariadne hired lawyer Marty Singer to take on FX over her brother's portrayal on Trust. Singer called it a "cruel, mean-spirited, and defamatory" depiction in a letter to FX.
Ariadne's son, August Getty, echoed his mother's statement, calling the projects "demonizing" in the New York Times piece. Ariadne's daughter Nats Getty, who is engaged to YouTube star and trans activist Gigi Gorgeous, revealed she found the works "disgusting" as well.
According to The New York Times piece, Ariadne does not talk about her early family life, and her grandfather John Paul Getty died in 1976, long before August and Nats were born. It is unclear how the surviving Getty family members currently feel about the alleged initial withholding of Getty III's ransom, a key plot point in both All the Money in the World and Trust. Still, it's easy to see why it would be upsetting for the family to have their last name associated so closely with greed.
Today, the Getty family, while still extraordinarily wealthy, is using their money for good. They are advocates for the LGBTQ community, with Ariadne recently pledging a whopping $15 million dollars to GLAAD.
"When you are raised in a family like this one, who you are as a person… you can be overshadowed," Ariadne told The New York Times.
The Gettys as charitable and politically engaged may be the truth of who this family is, but for many watching from the outside, the kidnapping drama will be the first thing to come to mind when they think about this American dynasty. All the Money in the World and Trust may tell a story that's great for drama, but in doing so, they can't illustrate the entire scope of a constantly evolving family — one that, right now, is fighting for justice for many marginalized people.