“Getting Rebecca: The Musical to Broadway is literally all I care about right now,” said Ben Sprecher, the theatrical producer who was taken for a ride by a would-be backer busted by Feds this week.
In a plot so flimsy it could only work on Broadway, bogus investor Mark C. Hotton has been charged with two counts of wire fraud, which could see him serving up to 40 years behind bars. The former stockbroker said he could turn up backing for the musical, which is based on the 1938 novel by Daphne du Maurier, but any financing he produced turned out to be purely fictional.
In the most ridiculous aspect of the scheme, Mr. Hotton volunteered a phantom investor by the name of Paul Abrams—but when Mr. Sprecher pushed for the would-be backer to cough up the funds, Mr. Abrams was said to have gone on safari, then, to have died of malaria.
“When we first heard the news, we thought: ‘malaria?!’” Mr. Sprecher told us over the phone yesterday. “It sounded odd at first, but we Googled it and found that thousands of people die from the disease every year.” Read More