The Spider’s Web: Britain’s Second Empire, is a documentary film that shows how Britain transformed from a colonial power into a global financial power. At the demise of empire, City of London financial interests created a web of offshore secrecy jurisdictions that captured wealth from across the globe and hid it behind obscure financial structures in a web of offshore islands. Today, up to half of global offshore wealth may be hidden in British offshore jurisdictions and Britain and its offshore jurisdictions are the largest global players in the world of international finance. How did this come about, and what impact does it have on the world today? This is what the Spider’s Web sets out to investigate.

“The Spider’s Web” is the final film in a trilogy of economics documentaries, the first one being “97% Owned: How is money created,” the second, “Princes of the Yen: Central Banks and the Transformation of the Economy.”


  • Director/Producer/Writer: Michael Oswald
  • Producer: John Christensen
  • Executive Producer: Simeon C. Roberts
  • Narrator: Andrew Piper
  • Made in Collaboration with: Sean Adam Boucher
  • Associate Producers: Daniel Turi & Katharine Round
  • Soundtrack: Sean Adam Boucher, Tim Hecker & Matthew Swinnerton
  • Year: 2017
  • Running Time: 78 minutes
  • Distributor: Sideways Film
  • IMDB: Visit
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  • Translations: Spanish by Andrés Arias Uribe; Spanish proofing by Marcelo Justo; German by Ursula Stucki; German proofing by Professor Martina Metzger; Italian by Mario Palla; Italian proofing by Tommaso Faccio; Korean by Joon Sik Jung; Russian by Maksim; Hungarian by Istvan Radnoty; French by Michele Christensen;

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