The GameStop (GME 6.81%) short-selling saga that unfolded over the past two weeks has all the ingredients for a hit made-for-TV movie: villains (hedge funds), heroes (Reddit traders), and conflict. Maybe it doesn't exactly have a completely happy ending, but the drama made for gripping reading for days.
Now it appears the folks over at AT&T's (T -0.14%) HBO division agree the cast of characters ought to get the movie treatment, as they've just greenlit the development of a major motion picture to tell the story of the populist investor uprising against Wall Street.
Lights, camera, action!
There are now, in fact, four movies in development chronicling how small retail investors took on the titans of finance and beat them at their own game. Comcast's (CMCSA 0.07%) MGM Studios, Netflix (NFLX 1.98%), and a feature-length documentary are all vying to tell the tale, not to mention that made-for-TV movie too. A book about it is also planned for the fall.
This verges on myth-making, though, because as much as small investors from the subReddits played a big role, many are beginning to believe Wall Street's biggest leading stars, including hedge funds themselves, had a far larger part in causing GameStop's stock to soar.
For example, The Wall Street Journal says the Senvest Management hedge fund made some $700 million off the situation. So where the little guy got the ball rolling, institutional investors quickly took over and soon accounted for most of the trading.
What occurred with GameStop and other highly shorted stocks was nothing short of legendary, but like those films that say "based on a true story," the film adaptation of this short story may stray far from the truth.
Even so, most investors were better off watching from the sidelines than taking on even a supporting role.