Meryl Streep, the star of The Laundromat, Steven Soderbergh’s irreverent comedy about Mossack Fonseca, the law firm that masterminded offshore tax schemes for some of the world’s most rich and powerful, has praised the reporters who uncovered the story.
In Soderbergh’s film, Streep plays a fictional Texan widow who digs into the fate of her late husband’s savings, ultimately exposing the company directors, Jürgen Mossack and Ramón Fonseca, played in the film by Gary Oldman and Antonio Banderas.
Speaking in Venice ahead of the film’s premiere on Sunday, Streep was eager to stress that the legwork was in fact done by about 300 international investigative reporters who broke the story in 2016.
The film, she said, “is an entertaining, flash, funny way of telling a very, very dark joke that’s being played on all of us. And many of the victims are journalists who got the word out.”
The Guardian reports “Streep singled out Daphne Caruana Galizia, the Maltese investigative reporter who was killed by a car bomb outside her home in 2017. “People died and people die still to get the word out. This movie is fun and it’s funny but it’s really, really, really important.” Variety reports “the crimes revealed in the Panama Papers were not victimless, citing the example of Daphne Caruana Galizia, a Maltese journalist who was using the Panama Papers to investigate corruption when she was killed by a car bomb in 2017. “Some people died for it,” Streep said. “This movie is fun, it’s funny, but it’s really, really important.”
“The Laundromat” is the story of a terrible joke “that’s being played on all of us,” Meryl Streep, one of the film’s stars, said Sunday.
Directed by Steven Soderbergh, the Netflix movie takes a blackly comic look at the investigation into the Panama Papers, a trove of documents that were leaked to journalists in 2016 and that revealed global schemes set up by a Panamanian law firm to help companies and rich clients around the world avoid billions of dollars in taxes. Streep plays a middle-class woman who is cheated of money she’s owed and starts asking uncomfortable questions.
Although the approach is humorous in many ways, the subject matter is deadly serious, both Soderbergh and Streep said Sunday in Venice, where the Netflix film is having its world premiere. “This is an entertaining, flash, funny way of telling a very, very dark, black-hearted joke, a joke that’s being played on all of us,” Streep said.