The Emperor’s New Clothes
The film contains archival footage from the 21st-century recession paired with “comedic send-ups” from Brand, conducted in the financial districts of London and New York. In one scene in the film, Brand attempts to confront Lord Rothermere, the billionaire owner of the Daily Mail, about his “non-dom” tax status, through which he avoids paying taxes in the United Kingdom by claiming residence elsewhere. When Brand rings the bell at Rothermere’s London mansion and asks through the intercom to speak to him, he is told by an unseen person that Rothermere does indeed live there.
Winterbottom stated that the film will explore why “nothing has changed” since the economic crisis in 2008.
“It’s about inequality and why the 1 percent (of the world’s wealthy) seem to have so much and the rest of us not quite so much,” Winterbottom told the BBC in October 2014. “Everyone knows about equality and what’s going on in the world, so the idea is to point out the ludicrous extremes of our society.”