“Operation Varsity Blues: The College Admissions Scandal” debuted Wednesday on the popular streaming platform, which sought to take an in-depth look at the case that captivated the country since 2019 and revealed the extreme lengths wealthy, elite parents have gone to in order to secure their children positions at top universities.
While the documentary touches upon the high-profile celebrities like Lori Loughlin, Felicity Huffman, Mossimo Giannulli and Olivia Jade who were swept up in the scandal, it puts its main focus on Singer.
According to The New York Post, the film, helmed by “Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened” director Chris Smith, blends interviews with experts as well as people who were involved with the case. It also features dramatic reenactments that rely on mostly verbatim conversations from phone calls Singer had with defendants in the case after he began cooperating with authorities. Actor Matthew Modine stands in for Singer in the reenactments.
Netflix’s ‘Operation Varsity Blues’ focuses the conversation on William ‘Rick’ Singer.
As The Daily Beast notes, the film does a lot to highlight the casual nature in which conversations about alleged bribery, cheating and fraud take place among the wealthy people ensnared by Singer’s promise of a “side door” into college, which included having students pose as recruits on lower-profile sports such as crew. It recalls the infamous photos that came to light of Loughlin’s daughters posing for photos on rowing machines.
The outlet reports that Singer is accused of pushing more than 700 students through his “side door” scheme to elite universities such as USC, UCLA, Yale, Stanford, Georgetown and Harvard. Desperate parents were willing to shell out $500,000 on the promise that they could essentially handpick where their child went to school.
The film focusing mostly on Singer is likely welcome news to Loughlin. A source recently told Entertainment Tonight that the former “Full House” star was “concerned” about the upcoming documentary as her husband is currently serving a five-month sentence behind bars for his part in the scandal.
“She wants nothing more than for time to pass so people won’t be talking about the college scandal anymore,” they explained.
Loughlin served less than two months in prison and paid a fine of $150,000. She now faces 100 community service hours and two years of supervised release.
Her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, is currently serving a five-month prison sentence. He was ordered to pay a $250,000 fine, serve two years of supervised release and 250 hours of community service.
One part surrounding the family that is noted in the documentary, however, is an event in which Olivia Jade’s father, Giannulli, allegedly confronted her high school guidance counselor after he expressed some doubt about her recruitment as a rowing athlete during a routine meeting with USC.