Saturday, July 05, 2008

Guy Hands: Max Bialystock, for real

If you invested in a bunch of really, really horrible films in the hope of making a huge loss to set against tax, and somehow managed to end up losing millions of quid, you might keep quiet.

Not so Guy Hands. He had been advised backing cinematic donkeys would net him back £1.40 for every £1 he threw away; trouble was, the loophole he was crawling through was blocked. So, now he's suing the accountants whose advice he followed.

Good lord: throwing tonnes and tonnes of money into a rubbish entertainment endeavour in order to profit from the loss. That wouldn't explain the EMI purchase, would it? Does he keep peering at the sales figures for Living La Vida Loca or whatever that Coldplay album is called and crying bitter, bitter tears?

There's something less than noble about a man who hoped to suck resources from the Exchequer by deliberately making worthless films having a strop because his plans failed - the money he hoped to make would have come from all of us, money which could be spent on hospitals, schools, painting the Queen's bedroom, and so on. He gambled, and lost; rather than taking it on the chin, he - and 74 others - are now demanding that the advisors make good their "losses".

Besides making him look like a bad loser and somewhat greedy, it also means that the world now knows that Guy Hands helped fund the movie Nine Dead Gay Guys, by all accounts a nasty piece of work trading on sexual and racial stereotypes to no great effect. If it had been us, we'd have happily swallowed the loss of a few million to keep that information on the back burner.

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