Colin Collender’s Playground has optioned the rights to David Enrich’s new narrative nonfiction book The Spider Network: The Wild Story of a Math Genius, a Gang of Backstabbing Bankers, and One of the Greatest Scams in Financial History, for series development.

HarperCollins

Author and Wall Street Journal business editor Enrich won the 2016 Gerald Loeb Award for his series of WSJ articles “The Unraveling of Tom Hayes,” about a brilliant but troubled British trader who was convicted and imprisoned for his involvement in Libor-fixing, one of the largest financial scams in history. With exclusive access to Hayes and his family, The Spider Network is a tell-all account of the characters at the center of the scandal. The book recently launched simultaneously in the U.S. and UK.

Hayes became the linchpin of a wild alliance that among others included a French trader nicknamed Gollum; the broker Abbo, who liked to publicly strip naked when drinking; a Kazakh chicken farmer-turned-something short of financial whiz kid; a broker known as Village (short for Village Idiot) who was fascinated with human-animal sex; an executive called Clumpy because of his patchwork hair loss; and a broker uncreatively nicknamed Big Nose. They eventually became known collectively as the Spider Network.

The project will be shepherded by Scott Huff, SVP Development and Production, and Elyse Dolbec, Director of Development and Production, in Playground’s U.S. office.

The Spider Network is a globe-trotting financial exposé in the vein of Wolf of Wall Street and The Big Short but with an enigmatic central character in banker Tom Hayes,” Huff said. “David Enrich’s book is a thrilling account of the Libor scandal and the man who took the fall for it that asks probing questions about who really pays the price for misconduct in a system that’s too big to fail.”