14 September 2020
BBC Four has commissioned leading factual producer Brook Lapping, part of Zinc Media Group, to make a feature-length investigative documentary, examining what became of the Libyan dictator Gaddifi’s huge wealth in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, which brought his brutal reign to a bloody end.
VPRO/NPO are the lead commissioners, and the film is co-produced with ZDF/Arte and Brook Lapping in association with Gebrüder Beetz Filmproduktion, The Search for Gaddafi’s Billions w/t (1 x 90 min) will follow two Dutch journalists, Misha Wessel and Thomas Blom, as they enter the dark and mysterious world of spies, special forces and political insiders, who are all hunting Gaddafi’s cash.
Greg Sanderson, Director, London Television, Zinc Media Group, says: “Enigmatic in life, it is no surprise that Gaddafi’s legacy is a tale of intrigue and violence. This film follows a deadly trail, covering large parts of the world, to find the missing billions. Our films are renowned for uncovering the real events behind modern history’s key moments. This film is no exception and we expect it to build on its strong pre-sales to garner strong international interest.”
Mandy Chang, Commissioning Editor BBC Storyville, adds: “The dark story of Muammar al-Gaddafi, and what happened to the billions he amassed and stashed outside Libya during his lifetime is shrouded in mystery. As the Libyan people, robbed of vast reserves that Gaddafi took for himself, remain impoverished and locked in a power vacuum, two competing groups mount a hunt for the twelve and a half billion dollars, that Gaddafi hid in South Africa.
“The Hunt for Gaddafi’s Billions is a terrific investigation into an under reported African story and we are thrilled to be showing the film as part of a brilliant run of Storyvilles this Autumn and Winter 2020.”
Widely reported as the world’s richest man, Gaddafi’s death prompted the ultimate treasure hunt. The film features Gaddafi’s confidants exiled from Libya, a mercenary who will only meet in an underground car park – in a clandestine plot straight out of Watergate – and a charismatic spy who holds vital information.
The Search for Gaddafi’s Billions (w/t), a 1×90’ for BBC Four, was commissioned by Mandy Chang, Commissioning Editor, Storyville. It is Executive Produced by Greg Sanderson and Karen Edwards for Brook Lapping at Zinc Media Group. It is distributed internationally by All3Media International.
Brook Lapping’s critically-acclaimed portfolio of international series includes: Inside Europe: 10 Years of Turmoil; Inside Obama’s White House; Iran and The West; Putin, Russia and The West; The Iraq War and most recently, Cuba: Castro Vs The World.
Supported by EU Media, the NPO Fund and the EBU Documentary Fund and distributed by All3Media International, the film was pre-sold to the BBC, along with sales to SVT in Sweden, DR in Denmark, NRK in Norway, YLE in Finland and RTS in Switzerland.