No. Answering the question, "How accurate is House of Gucci?" cinematographer Dariusz Wolski stated that the movie is not a highly factual docudrama. Rather, it's more akin to a "kitschy, funny, tragic tragedy, like a high-end soap opera." It explores Patrizia Reggiani's marriage into the family, which ultimately led to ex-husband Maurizio Gucci's murder. -Esquire
Yes. The House of Gucci true story confirms that Rodolfo Gucci (Jeremy Irons in the film) wasn't a fan of his son's wife. Rodolfo didn't attend their wedding and he called Patrizia "a social climber who has nothing in mind but money." He later came around somewhat and reconciled with his son.
Yes. The Ridley Scott movie is based on Sara Gay Forden's 2001 book The House of Gucci: A Sensational Story of Murder, Madness, Glamour, and Greed. The film follows the Gucci family across three turbulent decades.
A House of Gucci fact-check reveals that this is indeed what his Uncle Aldo (portrayed by Al Pacino) accused him of doing. As a result, Maurizio's 50 percent stake in Gucci was temporarily frozen. Afraid of the repercussions, Maurizio fled to Switzerland in 1986. He was originally determined to be guilty of faking his father's signature, but he was later acquitted.
Patrizia Reggiani had been born poor in Vignola, a city in northern Italy. She never knew her father. Her family came into money when she was 12. It was then that her mother married a wealthy entrepreneur named Ferdinando Reggiani. While Patrizia was married to Maurizio, she became an active socialite, befriending Jackie Kennedy Onassis when she and Maurizio were living in New York. Patrizia was drawn to the wealth and fame the family business had to offer. She was famously quoted as saying, "I would rather weep in a Rolls-Royce than be happy on a bicycle." Like in the movie, she often butted heads with Maurizio over his decisions regarding the company.
Yes. After Maurizio Gucci started dating Paola Franchi (portrayed by Camille Cottin in the movie), an artist and interior designer, Patrizia became jealous of the younger woman and tensions between Maurizio and his ex-wife escalated. Paola said that Patrizia threatened Maurizio and stalked them. In researching how true House of Gucci is, we learned that on several occasions, Patrizia had told friends that she wanted her ex-husband dead. In 2016, Paola told The Guardian, "I begged him to hire a bodyguard, but he refused. He didn’t believe Patrizia would go through with her threat because of their girls."
As depicted in the House of Gucci movie, their marriage deteriorated in the mid-1980s and they divorced in 1994. "Maurizio never asked me for a divorce," Patrizia said, "and I was alright with that. Then Paola Franchi came on the scene, and he asked me for a divorce. ... When I found out Maurizio wanted to marry this person, who had been a friend of mine, I thought, 'That's not possible.' I was sure he was ignoring his daughters to be with Paola Franchi. Maurizio was cutting us out. He no longer wanted to see his family. We have four houses in Saint Moritz, and he didn't want to give even one to my daughters. And I thought, 'What a bastard.'"
Following the divorce, Patrizia was legally prohibited from using the Gucci surname, yet she continued to use the last name anyway, commenting, "They need me. I still feel like a Gucci—in fact, the most Gucci of them all." -La Repubblica
Following her 2014 release from prison, Patrizia Reggiani was asked why she employed a hitman to kill her ex-husband, Maurizio Gucci. Patrizia replied, "My eyesight is not so good. I didn't want to miss." A House of Gucci fact-check reveals that during her trial, prosecutors argued that she had Maurizio killed to prevent him from marrying Paola Franchi, which would have halved her alimony to $860,000 per year, an amount that she likened to "a bowl of lentils." Patrizia was jealous of the younger Paola and had been harboring feelings of resentment towards her ex-husband. Prosecutors argued that Patrizia wanted control over the Gucci estate and was upset at the way Maurizio was managing the $170 million he had accumulated after selling his final stake in the family business.
"When I received the telephone call from my nanny saying that Maurizio was shot, I was very happy because all my problems were gone," Patrizia said in an interview. Not long after the murder, the Italian press dubbed Patrizia "The Black Widow."
Yes. A review of the House of Gucci fact vs. fiction confirms that Patrizia was present at her ex-husband Maurizio Gucci's funeral on April 3, 1995. She was later found guilty of arranging his murder but had been trying to portray herself as innocent at the time.
Following a murder trial that was heavily covered by the media, Patrizia Reggiani was convicted in November 1998 and sentenced to 29 years in prison. She served roughly 18 years and was released on good behavior in October 2016. -The New York Times
While in prison in the year 2000, Patrizia tried to argue that a 1992 surgery she had to remove a brain tumor had affected her personality, thus making her capable of having her ex-husband murdered. A Milan appeals court upheld her conviction but reduced her sentence from 29 to 26 years. That same year, she attempted suicide by hanging herself with a prison bedsheet, but she was discovered in time by guards. Her mental state while in prison improved in 2005 when the prison made an exception and allowed her to keep her pet ferret in her cell.
Gucci's president and CEO Marco Bizzarri said that the company cooperated with the filmmakers and granted them complete access to Gucci's archives for wardrobe and props. However, while researching the House of Gucci true story, we learned that some of the family members expressed disappointment over their lack of involvement in the production, claiming that the filmmakers were "stealing the identity of a family to make a profit." -Associated Press
No. While Patrizia praised the casting of Lady Gaga as her in the film, admitting that the singer resembles her, she was bothered by the fact that Lady Gaga never wanted to meet with her. "I am rather annoyed at the fact that Lady Gaga is playing me in the new Ridley Scott film without having had the consideration and sensibility to come and meet me," she said. It troubled Patrizia that she wasn't asked to be part of the project and she pointed out that she wasn't going to receive "a cent from the film." She said that her annoyance with Lady Gaga wasn't about money. "It's about common sense and respect," she said. "I say this with all the sympathy and appreciation that I have for her." -Tatler.com
Lady Gaga told Good Morning America, "I did all the research on who she was as a person, but I didn't wanna meet her, because I could tell very quickly that this woman wanted to be glorified for this murder, and she wanted to be remembered as this criminal. I didn't want to collude with something I don't believe in. She did have her husband murdered."
Patrizia, 72, lives in Milan and can be seen around town, at times with her pet parrot (blue and yellow macaw) resting on her shoulder. She reportedly works for the jewelry brand Bozart (Tatler.com). She still uses the surname Gucci, openly referring to herself as "Patrizia Reggiani Gucci."