In life Geoffrey Edelsten was larger than life – and he didn’t mind paying to promote the illusion of popularity.
In death, it is likely to be the same.
Edelsten died alone on Friday inside his Melbourne apartment and is expected to be farewelled in the way he was accustomed.
Bride Brynne Gordon and groom Geoffrey Edelsten walk down the aisle after their 2009 wedding
Geoffrey Edelsten paid for guests to attend his wedding to Brynne. Some claim he has already ponied-up for guests at his funeral
Mob boss Carl Williams was buried in a gold casket. Melbourne waits to see how Geoffrey Edelsten will be sent-off
‘I wouldn’t put it past Geoff to have already of paid some big names to attend the funeral,’ an industry insider told Daily Mail Australia on Monday.
It was hardly a secret Edelsten embraced the celebrity spotlight whether he deserved it or not.
When he married Brynne Gordon in 2009, Edelsten flew in Jason Alexander, better known as George Costanza of Seinfeld fame, as a guest.
Alexander claimed at the time he had not been paid to show up.
The Hollywood star only met the couple for the first time on their wedding day and quickly formed ‘a profound friendship’, he told media then.
The $3.3 million wedding at Crown Casino’s Palladium room was also graced by Fran Drescher, who starred in The Nanny.
On Monday, celebrity reporter Peter Ford doubled down on his claim he was offered big coin to attend the Edelsten wedding.
‘One thing that can’t be denied – he wasn’t boring!’ Ford said following news of the 78-year old’s death on Friday.
‘When I declined an invite to his wedding to Brynne he offered me $10,000 to change my mind.’
Bride Brynne Gordon and groom Geoffrey Edelsten at their multi-million dollar wedding
Unconventional: But on the day, things were a little unusual for a wedding with Brynne revealing she knew just seven of her 500 guests – and claimed she was unable to interact with her two brothers on the big day
Ford claimed it was chump change for the colourful identity, who in his prime in the 80s was known to have cash stuffed in every pocket.
Ford said he agreed to attend the wedding after Edelsten bumped the offer up to $15,000 and donated it to charity.
Channel 9 presenter Richard Wilkins, who acted as Master of Ceremonies at Edelsten’s wedding reception, did much better out of the deal, Ford said.
‘Found out Richard Wilkins got $50,000 so I felt cheated,’ he claimed.
Entertainment reporter Peter Ford claimed he was offered $10,000 to attend Edelsten’s wedding
Channel 9 presenter Richard Wilkins allegedly cost Edelsten $50,000 to attend the wedding
Following the couple’s divorce after five years of marriage, Brynne Edelsten claimed her ex-husband paid for more than just celebrities to attend her star studded wedding.
During a 2015 sit-down with Studio 10, Brynne claimed Edelsten had even paid off his own relatives to show-up.
‘It wasn’t just Fran and Jason who were paid to be there – they were working – but some of Geoff’s relatives were paid to be there,’ Brynne revealed.
‘They were guests. It seemed so odd that they would want to be paid to be there.’
Brynne said she knew just seven of her 500 guests – and claimed she was unable to interact with her two brothers on the big day.
‘I have two brothers, they were both there but I don’t have any photos with them,’ she said at the time.
‘Every time they tried to approach me, or approach my table, security just denied them access. They were not allowed to come anywhere near me, so I didn’t even get to see them at my wedding.’
Geoffrey Edelsten and Brynne Edelsten arrive ahead of the 2013 Brownlow Medal
Geoffrey Edelsten was jailed after hiring Christopher Dale Flannery (right) to bash a former patient. Flannery was known as ‘Mr Rent-A-Kill’
The former owner of the Sydney Swans football club, who was admired and loathed for his flamboyant lifestyle, died on Friday afternoon at Balencea Apartments on St Kilda Road.
Edelsten lived the final months of his life as a recluse, according to friends.
He had been found guilty in 1990 of soliciting former hit man Christopher Flannery to assault a former patient, and was jailed for a year.
Apart from the conviction, Edelsten faced other consequences, including being struck off as a doctor.
It was a fall from grace for a man who pioneered flashy 24-hour medical clinics in the 1980s, which came with grand pianos.
He will be farewelled over the coming days in what is expected to be a fitting funeral for the colourful Melbourne identity.