Forget making a short story into a Hollywood movie, JJ Abrams wants to make a magazine article into a full blown feature film. WIRED magazine is set to run an article entitled, “The Untold Story of the World’s Biggest Diamond Heist,” in next month’s issue but Paramount has already swooped in and bought up the rights in hopes of making off with some box office loot of their own.

The article, which details out the elaborate 2001 diamond heist, was released online in advance of the printed publication due to this week’s release of the alleged mastermind Leonardo Notarbartolo from jail. Yeah, so right there you can tell things didn’t quite go according to plan. In fact, a scattering of trash was all it took to bring it down.

It is a fascinating read thanks to Notarbartolo’s agreement to finally divulge his side of the story with never before heard details. The whole thing reads like a real-life “Ocean’s Eleven” including the replication of the target vault for practice and evaluation. That little aspect had me scrambling to see if they were inspired by the 2001 remake, but alas, unless they were privy to an early screening it was merely coincidence despite being within months of each other. Definitely some exciting Hollywood material here.

Below is an excerpt from the article along with a video on the diamond heist story:

In February 2003, Leonardo Notarbartolo was arrested for heading a ring of Italian thieves. They were accused of breaking into a vault two floors beneath the Antwerp Diamond Center and making off with at least $100 million worth of loose diamonds, gold, jewelry, and other spoils. The vault was thought to be impenetrable. It was protected by 10 layers of security, including infrared heat detectors, Doppler radar, a magnetic field, a seismic sensor, and a lock with 100 million possible combinations. The robbery was called the heist of the century, and even now the police can’t explain exactly how it was done.

The loot was never found, but based on circumstantial evidence, Notarbartolo was sentenced to 10 years. He has always denied having anything to do with the crime and has refused to discuss his case with journalists, preferring to remain silent for the past six years.

Until now.

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