Picture it: You’re young, beautiful, free, and living in Rome of the 1960s. You are John Paul Getty III, and you have no rules. That’s the reality William Fletcher Chace (Brendan Fraser) encounters when he begins his investigation to find Paul during the second episode of Trust. The 16-year-old Paul, he discovers, was living in a dingy apartment with an artist and a pair of identical twins, Martine Zacher and Jutta Winkelmann, before he was kidnapped. Martine and Jutta only appear briefly in the second episode, but don’t be fooled – like many of the characters in Trust, Martine and Jutta lived extraordinary lives, socializing with celebrities, intellectuals, and of course, the heirs to massive fortunes.
The twins were born in a provincial town in Germany, but knew from an early age that they wanted to explore the world. “When we were four, we tried to emigrate to America in a baby carriage without wheels,” said Jutta in a video for the site Euromaxx. Jutta and Martine (who now goes by Gisela) disappeared from the house, thinking the baby carriage could function as a ship. Of course, that plan failed — but the girls eventually got out of the countryside. When the girls were teenagers in the ‘70s, they moved to Berlin and were swept up into the fervent political spirit of the times.
The real fun began when the twins moved to Italy, and began socializing with celebrities and the intelligentsia, like filmmaker Federico Fellini. It was as if the twins moved through the world with a built-in allure. “It was unusual, two girls on the road looking for adventure. People were interested in us,” Jutta said. The sisters felt connected to these celebrities on a spiritual level, too. “We weren’t interested in fame as people. They were all brothers and sisters of a common spirit,” said Martine in a video for Euromaxx. Later, in California, the celebrity socializing would continue — the twins had private jam sessions with Leonard Cohen, psychedelic trips with Bob Dylan, and threesomes with Dennis Hopper.
It was in early 1973 in Rome that the course of 24-year-old Martine’s life took a sharp turn. Martine met John Paul Getty III, a young man eight years her junior. At the time, she had been working in an alternative theater, and raising a baby daughter, Anna, from a previous marriage. Martine and Paul began dating, but according to Painfully Rich by John Pearson, Paul continued seeing the many women who wanted to date the “Golden Hippy” of Rome. One such woman was Martine's sister. In an interview with the German magazine Welt, Jutta admitted that she, too, was in love with Paul.
Then, the central focus of Trust arrived: Paul was kidnapped in July 1973. After a months-long ordeal, Paul was eventually returned to his family, without an ear and with significant emotional damage. Back in Rome, Paul moved in with Martine, and found himself in a stable, loving relationship. So when Martine became pregnant the following summer, he proposed. Martine and Paul were married in a happy (and highly publicized) wedding. But the marriage came with financial ramifications. Since Paul married Martine before he was 22, he was barred from receiving any income from the Getty family trust.
The couple moved to Los Angeles, and brought Jutta along, of course. In 1975, Martine and Paul had a son, Balthazar (originally, his name was to be Tarzan). But domestic bliss didn’t last for long. Paul struggled with the emotional repercussions of his kidnapping, and an alcohol addiction developed while he was kidnapped. There was some financial hope – J. Paul Getty conceded and gave Paul money on the condition he study at a university. But in his state, Paul struggled to complete his coursework in Chinese history at Pepperdine University, or do much at all.
In the midst of this, Jutta and Martine’s sexual adventures continued. According to Martine, “cheating” didn’t exist back then. After all, Martine caught Paul having sex with a girlfriend days before Balthazar was born; he also fell in love with Patti Smith. So Martine and Jutta continued to have joint affairs — at one party hosted by the lead singer of the Byrds, the twins were intent on seducing Bob Dylan (it didn't end up happening).
In 1981, Paul suffered a seizure brought on by drugs, and became paralyzed. Martine took care of him, along with his mother, Gail, but in 1993, Martine and Paul’s marriage ended. She moved back to Munich, where she lives with her sister now. Even if the marriage ended, the bond remained. Martine spent two months of the year with Paul, and spoke to him regularly.
Rest assured, Jutta and Martine’s role in Paul's life will be explored in later episodes of Trust. But if you’re really committed to learning about the lives of wild it-girls who embodied the spirit of the ‘70s, you may want to brush up on your German. In 2008, Jutta and Gisela wrote a German-language memoir chronicling their adventures.