Sofia Coppola’s new film The Bling Ring has fast become one of the year’s most anticipated releases, effectively leading a growing list of films about youth girls gone bad. Apparently, when we’re not too busy spring breaking or assassinating people, we’re all just simply stalking and stealing from our celebrity idols.
Ironically the hunters have become the hunted this week as The Daily Beast turned to the tools of youth — Facebook and Instagram — and, well, any other means necessary (cell phones and prison officers, included) to bring you a fun “where are they now?” segment on the six (and honorary seventh) members of the real life ‘Bling Ring’. Here’s a quick, slightly entertaining, slightly sad summary. (Disclaimer: Emma Watson is not included… well, maybe a little bit.)
Alexis Neiers, who inspired Emma Watson’s character Nikki in Coppola’s interpretation, was originally sentenced to 180 days in jail (of which she served 30), in addition to three years’ probation and a whopping $600,000 worth of restitution payments to Orlando Bloom. Around the same time as the case was gaining notoriety, she and her two sisters Tess (then 20) and Gabby (then 16) were shooting a reality TV show called Pretty Wild for E!. As The Daily Beast notes, instead of following the threesome’s aspirations to act, model and “do fashion”, the show actually ended up documenting “the unfurling of [Neiers'] case in real time.”
Despite early discussions with E!, the show did not return for a second season. Neiers told The Daily Beast that since her court case, she has “got sober,” got married to a fellow AA companion, and got knocked up. In a new interview with VICE, she even mentioned plans to “speak at high schools, sponsor young recovering addicts and write a memoir” (inspired by Dr Drew and Jenna Jameson, respectively). She also blogs, tweets and instagrams like any other 21-year-old reformed celebrity heist mastermind-come-spiritual baby mama would; you know, just the usual stuff about the last time she used heroin and what she really thinks of that movie based on her real-life events.
Nicholas Prugo was the first member of the Bling Ring to be identified and arrested by police after they received footage of him ransacking both Lindsay Lohan and Audrina Patridge’s homes. He was the first to return the stolen items in his possession and publicly apologise for his actions on Good Morning America, and he was the first to point the finger at fellow group member Rachel Lee as the true ringleader. He was also, and perhaps most wisely, the first to shut the f**k up and amiably told The Daily Beast that he couldn’t talk about the case at the time.
Since pleading no contest to residential burglary for robbing Lohan and being sentenced to three years’ probation and 60 days of community service, Diana’s life has changed dramatically (well, duh). She’s since started a career in fitness and nutrition and “found God”, although we’re unsure if he was lurking in Lohan or Hilton’s closet.
Lee has been touted as the true celebrity-obsessed, bloody-minded leader of the Bling Ring, and inspired Katie Chang’s character in Coppola’s movie. She was sentenced to four years’ jail time, but was paroled on March 28 of this year after only serving two. Since getting out, Lee has been MIA but, according to The Daily Beast, her prison coach told FOX411’s ‘Pop Tarts’ column that “Rachel has gotten lots of therapy; she’s gotten clean and sober and become much closer to her mum.”
Courtney Leigh Ames
During the trial, Courtney rocked up to court to plead not guilty whilst wearing Lindsay Lohan’s necklace. Idiot. She’s since, rather appropriately, disappeared from the media circus, but was sentenced to three years’ probation, 60 days of community service, and pleaded no contest to receiving a jacket that had been stolen from Paris Hilton. Seems an appropriate time to make an ‘I Robbed Paris Hilton’s House And All I Got Was This Measly Jacket” t-shirt joke.
Jonathan Ajar, a.k.a. “Johnny Dangerous”
Ex-boyfriend of Courtney Leigh Ames, Ajar was reportedly “taxed with selling all the ill-gotten goods for cold, hard cash”. According to The Daily Beast, Ajar was charged separately from the rest of the Bling Ring and pleaded no contest to possession of cocaine for sale, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and one count of receiving stolen property from the Bling Ring haul. In 2010, Ajar was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment; however, he’s been out since March 2011 and, judging from his incredible Instagram, has since continued his “livin’ large lifestyle”. #livinglikerapperssaytheydo
Roy Lopez, Jr.
Now known as perhaps the world’s worst salesman, it was Roy’s inability to sell even a skerrick of his $2 million Paris Hilton jewellery bounty that implicated him in the Bling Ring trial. In court, he pleaded no contest to receiving stolen property and was sentenced to three years’ probation. As The Daily Beast notes, his whereabouts are currently unknown.
So, it seems that the majority of these once celebrity-obsessed, fame-hungry kids have turned over new leaves and settled into lives of general anonymity since the big bust. Not to be cynical, but we have a feeling that a major film release and the media interest that goes with it might just change all that. Surely, MTV can gather them all together into one house for a Jersey Shore style series? We’d totally watch that.
The Bling Ring opens locally on July 25.