The 1987 film Wall Street is one of the most popular films dealing with business, and for many people provides an enduring image of capitalism. The film is therefore a good illustration of filmmakers’ portrayal of business, and how this portrayal can influence public perceptions and misconceptions. This is important as public misconceptions of business, in turn, can contribute to the regulatory environment. This article discusses the view of business presented in the film, contrasts this view with an alternative, and more realistic, narrative, and shows how the film may have influenced subsequent regulation.


Law and Economics

Date of this Version

June 2005