Aziz is CEO of Red Granite Pictures and stepson of former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. Both Red Granite and Razak have been probed as part of a long-running investigation into potential embezzlement relating to state-run sovereign wealth fund 1MDB.
In March of this year, Daddy’s Home and Dumb and Dumber To backer Red Granite agreed to forfeit $60 million to the U.S. government as part of a federal investigation involving the Malaysian fund. Aziz and Red Granite have denied wrongdoing.
Financier Low Taek Jho, a friend of Aziz and his family, and who received a “Special Thanks” in the Wolf of Wall Street credits, has been closely scrutinized by the commission and by the U.S. Justice Department. Aziz himself is alleged to have received hundreds of millions of dollars in laundered money from the fund, which – according to the Justice Department – was used to pay for luxury properties and help set up Red Granite.
Following its spectacular Cannes launch in 2011 and The Wolf of Wall Street‘s huge success, Red Granite has been far quieter of late. The only movie on the firm’s upcoming slate is the Papillon remake with Charlie Hunnam, which Bleecker Street will release in August. Aziz set up the firm in 2010 with producer Joey McFarland.
Last week, the 1MDB task force in Malaysia reportedly froze more than 900 accounts following allegations that they received funds from 1MDB. We have reached out to Red Granite for comment.