Netflix to produce Panama Papers film

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Two German journalists leaked the so-called Panama Papers in April this year, shedding light on an underworld of shady tax dealings. Now Netflix is turning their book into a film.

Netflix said it had acquired the rights to the book “Panama Papers: Breaking the Story of How the World’s Rich and Powerful Hide Their Money,” by German journalists Frederik Obermaier and Bastian Obermayer. US producer John Wells, known for series like “ER” and “West Wing,” will be producing the film adaptation of the tax tale.

In April 2016, the investigative journalists from the daily newspaper “Süddeutsche Zeitung” reported the leak by an anonymous whistleblower of hundreds of thousands of tax documents from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca. Of the more than 11.5 million documents leaked, many incriminated prominent individuals with offshore companies, uncovering tax evasion crimes. Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson was among those who stepped down as a result.

Netflix’s chief content officer Ted Sarandos said in a statement that he was confident the movie would “deliver a gripping tale.”

Some 400 journalists in 80 countries were actively involved in evaluating the leaked documents. The International Consortium of Journalists, whose members were involved in the release of the Panama Papers, will be collaborating on the upcoming Netflix movie.

The Netflix film, whose cast and release date are unknown, is the second to tackle the Panama Papers affair. It was reported earlier this month that US director Steven Sonderbergh would be making a movie based on the forthcoming book “Secrecy World” by US reporter Jake Bernstein.

kbm/ss (Reuters, dpa)

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