I invested in two films entitled Blue Hill Avenue and Cahoots. Producers were Mike Erwin (Jacksonville, OR) and J. Max Kirishima (Woodland Hills, CA/Japan). Five million was raised by Rand Chortkoff (Los Angeles, CA) & minions. Blue Hill Avenue cost 1M to make. Some of the balance was supposedly used to "finish" the project to sell it to Artisan Pictures. The remaining money was pocketed. No investor ever saw a dime from this movie nor from others promoted at the time.
West Hollywood resident Stuart Rawitt, center left, and Rand Chotkoff, center right
A West Hollywood man was sentenced today to 63 months in federal prison for helping bilk investors out of nearly $2 million by offering shares in movies that were never made.
Stuart Rawitt, 47, was also ordered by U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner to serve three years of supervised release following his prison term. The judge set an April 20 restitution hearing, and ordered Rawitt immediately taken into custody.
Rawitt, who was charged in the case along with two others last year, pleaded guilty in October to a federal mail fraud charge.
The defendants raised money for a film called “The Smuggler” through a boiler room telemarketing operation in Van Nuys after first representing themselves as researchers.
Victims were falsely told that 64 percent of investor money would be used to produce the film, and that investors would be first in line to receive any revenue.
Prosecutors said Rawitt and his co-defendants — who are awaiting sentencing — falsely claimed to have contracted such actors as John Cusack, Gerard Butler, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Donald Sutherland and Jon Voight to appear in “The Smuggler.”
The co-defendents are:
Samuel Braslau, 53, of Mar Vista, an attorney and co-founder of the companies;
Rand Jay Chortkoff, 64, of Encino, a co-founder of the companies,
And Robert Matias, 50, of Granada Hills, a salesperson.