Netflix documentary to delve into hoax of German Shepherd worth $400 million

An upcoming Netflix docuseries plans to delve into the bizarre hoax perpetuated by an Italian pharmaceutical heir who claimed his dog Gunther VI controlled a fortune worth $400 million.

The newly released trailer for Gunther’s Millions, a four-part series set for release on February 1, teases fresh revelations into the long-running prank masterminded by Maurizio Mian.

The trailer released on Monday hints at revelations about a ‘cult-like’ home filled with attractive young people who ‘worked’ for the dog, and includes Mian’s outlandish new claim that Gunther VI is a clone.

For decades, Mian claimed to work for a family line of German Shepherds, all named Gunther, while using the ruse to attract press coverage and promote his various real estate deals and ventures.

In Mian’s tale of the dogs, the Gunthers are supposedly supported by a multi-million dollar trust set up by the German countess Karlotta Liebenstein when she died in 1992 to care for her dog, Gunther III, and his progeny.

An upcoming Netflix docuseries delves into the long-running hoax perpetrated by Maurizio Mian (above), who claimed his dog Gunther VI controlled a fortune of $400 million

There is no evidence that Liebenstein ever existed, and Mian told an Italian newspaper in 1995 the countess ‘was just an invention to publicize the philosophy’ of his foundation.

However, Mian at other points has claimed his confessions about the countess are the real hoax and the fairy tales about the dog are, in fact real.

In the upcoming Netflix docuseries, executive producers Aurelien Leturgie and Emilie Dumay seek to get to the truth behind Mian’s tales.

A statement from Netflix says the show will offer ‘never-before-seen archival material’ as well as ‘intimate and sometimes shocking conversations with Mian and the rest of Gunther’s longtime associates.’

‘Over the past 30 years, Mian has built an empire on behalf of his canine boss, including glamorous real estate purchases, controversial social experiments, and one of the biggest tax fraud schemes of all time,’ the statement said.

‘It’s a fairy tale both beautiful and bizarre, and naturally, questions abound,’ said Netflix.

Mian claimed Gunther VI lived a life of luxury, enjoying private planes and yachts

Mian claimed Gunther VI lived a life of luxury, enjoying private planes and yachts

The trailer teases revelations about a house filled with 'fantastic looking' human companions for Gunther VI who were under 24-hour surveillance and were 'encouraged to have sex'

The trailer teases revelations about a house filled with ‘fantastic looking’ human companions for Gunther VI who were under 24-hour surveillance and were ‘encouraged to have sex’

The trailer released on Monday shows snippets of interviews with several of Gunther VI's 'employees' and other human associates

The trailer released on Monday shows snippets of interviews with several of Gunther VI’s ’employees’ and other human associates

Some journalists were duped by Mian's story that Gunther VI purchased a home from Madonna for $7.5 million in 2000. The home was purchased by a corporation associated with Mian

Some journalists were duped by Mian’s story that Gunther VI purchased a home from Madonna for $7.5 million in 2000. The home was purchased by a corporation associated with Mian

The trailer released on Monday shows snippets of interviews with several of Gunther VI’s ’employees’ and other human associates.

‘You’re talking about a dog that’s worth $400 million,’ one woman says, adding with a roll of the eyes, ‘Oh, it’s a true story. I work for the dog.’

The trailer teases revelations about a house filled with human companions for Gunther VI, who were under 24-hour surveillance and were ‘encouraged to have sex’ with each other.

‘He wanted young people who were fantastic looking to live with a rich dog,’ says one man. “I go, ‘Are you crazy?'”

‘I wanted to be a tick on that dog’s a** for the rest of my life,’ another man says.

Asked by an interviewer if the situation seemed ‘cult-like,’ the man laughed and denied the allegation as ‘hilarious’.

Another woman says: ‘As long as we resided in the mansion with Gunther, we’re going to just enjoy the millions. It got a little bit twisted.’

“We were like lab rats,” she added.

The documentary follows a string of tales about Gunther told by Mian, who has been telling tales about the dogs since the 1990s.

The documentary follows a string of tales about Gunther told by Mian, who has been telling tales about the dogs since the 1990s.

In a clip from the trailer, Mian is seen in an old media appearance with one of the Gunthers

In a clip from the trailer, Mian is seen in an old media appearance with one of the Gunthers

At the end of the trailer, Mian puts forward another stunning new claim, saying: ‘The dogs were cloned.’

The documentary follows a string of tales about Gunther told by Mian, who repeatedly deceived journalists.

In 2021, many journalists were duped by Mian’s story that Gunther VI was selling a Miami mansion for $31.75 million, after purchasing the home from Madonna for $7.5 million.

Even the Associated Press, a respected newswire service, reported on the story after receiving a press release from publicists representing the real estate agents who had the listing.

The AP later retracted the story and issued a new report debunking Mian’s claims.

The AP published a story that did not meet our standards and should not have been published. We did not do our due diligence in the reporting process. We have corrected the story, and we apologize,’ AP spokeswoman Lauren Easton said in a statement.

German Shepherd Gunther VI sits by the pool at a house formally owned by pop star Madonna in 2021. The claim that the dog was selling the mansion tricked many journalists

German Shepherd Gunther VI sits by the pool at a house formally owned by pop star Madonna in 2021. The claim that the dog was selling the mansion tricked many journalists

German Shepherd Gunther VI chases a tennis ball thrown by self-proclaimed 'handler' Stacey Marino outside of a house formally owned by pop star Madonna in 2021

German Shepherd Gunther VI chases a tennis ball thrown by self-proclaimed ‘handler’ Stacey Marino outside of a house formally owned by pop star Madonna in 2021

German Shepherd Gunther VI sits on a lavish round, red velvet bed overlooking Biscayne Bay in the house formally owned by Madonna

German Shepherd Gunther VI sits on a lavish round, red velvet bed overlooking Biscayne Bay in the house formally owned by Madonna

The AP’s corrected report noted that the director of the Gunther Group, the corporation that actually owned Madonna’s former home, declined to answer questions because ‘there is an exclusive contract with a Netflix production.’

In 1999, The Miami Herald reported that Gunther IV was trying to buy a mansion from actor Sylvester Stallone. The next day, the Herald reported that it was just a publicity stunt.

‘If you want to write it’s a joke, you can write that,’ Mian told the Herald. ‘I won’t do anything.’

Mian’s own fortune appears to have come from his family’s Italian pharmaceutical business, not a German countess.

Istituto Gentili, which developed a treatment for osteoporosis with the US pharmaceutical giant Merck, was purchased by Merck in 1997.

.

Leave a Comment