The documentary Inventing David Geffen, which aired on PBS in 2012 as part of the American Masters series, is hitting Netflix on Aug. 4, which means that new viewers will get a chance to get to know media mogul David Geffen a bit better.
Don’t expect to see some of the billionaire’s indulgences. Geffen’s mega-yachts don't make an appearance in the documentary, as The New York Times noted in 2012.
“Notoriously press and camera-shy, David Geffen reveals himself for the first time in this unflinching portrait of a complex and compelling man,” PBS touted in a press release when the two-hour film came out. “His far-reaching influence—as agent and manager, record industry mogul, Hollywood and Broadway producer, and billionaire philanthropist—helped shape American popular culture for the past four decades.”
Ahead of the Netflix release, here’s more information on Geffen.
David Geffen has a net worth of $10.5 billion.
According to Forbes, Geffen currently has $10.5 billion to his name. Geffen made his fortune as a founder of the record labels Asylum Records, Geffen Records, and DGC Records, as well as the film studio DreamWorks.
The David Geffen Foundation is a charitable organization supporting a range of causes.
According to Inside Philanthropy, Geffen’s self-named charitable foundation has assets of about $400 million and “engages in a broad range of grantmaking areas, including human rights, women and girls, LGBTQ causes, disease research, arts and culture, criminal justice reform, civic engagement and democracy, and Jewish causes.”
As for politics, Geffen has supported Democrats—but criticized the Clintons.
In a 2007 New York Times interview, Geffen spoke out against Bill and Hillary Clinton as he threw his support behind Barack Obama for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination. “Everybody in politics lies, but [the Clintons] do it with such ease, it’s troubling,” he told the newspaper.
In 2016, as Hillary competed against Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination, Geffen donated $2,700 to each candidate. “I’m not supporting anybody,” he said in an email to The Wall Street Journal.
In 2019, Geffen supported Democrat Pete Buttigieg’s 2020 presidential campaign alongside Barry Diller, Reed Hastings, Jonathan Gray, and other billionaires, according to Forbes.
Celebrities like Bezos and Oprah Winfrey flock to Geffen’s yacht.
Geffen’s yacht, the Rising Sun, practically became a symbol of the COVID-era class divide last year. Geffen posted an Instagram post saying that he was “isolated in the Grenadines avoiding the virus” aboard the $590-million vessel. As social media users called out the “tone-deaf” post, Geffen made his Instagram account private, according to W Magazine.
The previous summer, the Rising Sun—which Geffen purchased from Oracle billionaire Larry Ellison in 2010—hosted Oprah Winfrey, Gayle King, Katy Perry, Orlando Bloom, Chris Rock, Karlie Kloss, and Bezos, among other celebrities, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “There’s a reason the most powerful people in the world show up,” an industry source told the magazine. “It is the most coveted, most exclusive, and most unbelievable vacation experience ever.”