Volkswagen emissions scandal set for movie produced by Leonardo DiCaprio

Empty chairs and cameras are pictured prior to a press conference to announce the new Volkswagen CEO amid a pollution scandal at the German carmaker's headquarters in Wolfsburg on Sept 25.
Empty chairs and cameras are pictured prior to a press conference to announce the new Volkswagen CEO amid a pollution scandal at the German carmaker's headquarters in Wolfsburg on Sept 25. PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP, REUTERS) - Hollywood is planning a movie about Volkswagen's emissions-cheating scandal, with Leonardo DiCaprio, who has long championed environmental causes, set to produce the film, press reports said Monday (Oct 12).

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Paramount and DiCaprio's production company Appian Way have bought the rights to an upcoming book on the scandal, which has sent ripples across the globe.

The auto giant stands accused of installing software on millions of diesel cars to cheat emissions tests and evade limits on nitrogen oxide and other pollutants.

The scandal has deeply damaged the image of the carmaker and led to the resignation of the company's chief executive Martin Winterkorn.

DiCaprio, star of (Titanic" and "The Wolf of Wall Street", is an outspoken advocate for environmental issues and his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has donated millions for environmental causes.

The award-winning actor has also been involved in a number of film projects that touch on environmental issues including "The 11th Hour", a documentary about the state of the planet.

Publishing rights for the as-yet-untitled book by New York Times journalist Jack Ewing sold earlier this month for six figures to the Norton publishing house, New York literary agency Marly Rusoff and Associates said.

The book is expected to investigate how a "more, better, faster" ethos fueled one of the greatest frauds in corporate history.