Superstar, Super-Rich


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Max Flint and producer Helen Williamson reveal how it is no longer just footballers and pop stars who are making unimaginable amounts of money every week; globalisation has ensured that chefs, financial professionals , artists and architects are also securing vast pay packets. Economists call it the 'superstar effect', the way in which a few leaders in their field become unbeatable, their status reinforcing the idea they are a 'must-buy' commodity.

Max Flint meets superstars from different walks of life who have scaled up their earnings to become super rich. Vanessa Mae is the world's most popular violinist, but unlike violinists 50 years ago, she has a global fan base. It's allowed her to sell over 10 million records world wide and has subsidised a super rich lifestyle. Architect Zaha Hadid expresses her excitement that the internet now makes it possible for clients in every part of the globe to commission her work.

Global TV means that the world of football is flush with cash. Top players don't just get huge salaries for their performance on the pitch, their famous faces are found on advertising billboards across the globe – adding even more to their incomes. Endorsements are also helping celebrity chefs like Anthony Worrall Thompson earn superstar salaries.

It's not just the famous who are affected by the superstar premium. Technology has even allowed humble bookies to become superstars. By setting up a betting agency online, the founders of Betfair can serve punters around the world

Max Flint gets a taste of the super rich superstar lifestyle. From country estates to luxury cars, designer jewellery to fighter jets, The Money Programme finds out what the mega wealthy are spending their money on.

"Pick of the Day"
- Sunday Times, Mail on Sunday, The Times, Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph

"Karl Marx must be spinning in his grave"
- Daily Telegraph

First Broadcast

November 30, 2007



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Producer Director

Helen Williamson


Matt Flint

Executive Producer

Eamonn Matthews


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