In 2007, my day job wasn’t making films. It was making spreadsheets. Sexy, I know.
This was before the economic shitstorm had hit in full force, though its clouds were already forming on the horizon. Rumors of a company sale and mass layoffs grew louder by the day. My friend ran a small team at the time, and he was relieved to find out that all of their jobs were safe. So he set up one-on-one meetings to share the good news.
Then a funny thing happened. After telling a young woman that her job was secure, she began to cry. My friend just sat there in disbelief as she pleaded with him to reconsider. Turns out she had been counting on that layoff. It was her dream, and he was crushing it.
At first, I was just as stunned as he was. But then I thought about it.
This woman clearly hated her job, and doing similar work at the time, I can’t say I blame her. Plus, she knew that some of her friends would get laid off. And for a non-manager like her, there was no hope of any bonuses, raises, or promotions anytime soon. In her mind, the only path to a better life was to get the hell out of there with a generous severance check in her pocket.
And that, my friends, was the genesis of Sevvy Hounds, though I didn’t know it at the time. The longer I stayed in corporate America, the more I understood where she was coming from, and the more I saw that she wasn’t alone.
With this project, I wanted to shine a comedic light on this emerging counter-culture, which trust me, exists in just about every office in America. What kind of people out there are happily diving onto layoff grenades? And how are they going about it? After all, it requires a kind of artistry. These people have to keep their intentions hidden from view as they systematically tank their jobs. And even that tanking has to be carefully calibrated, lest they go too far and get themselves fired (and leave empty handed).
So, look. I know that today’s economy sucks. It has no friends. People say bad things about it. And all rightfully so. But there’s a flipside to that, where strange and often damn funny things happen. Sevvy Hounds lives on that flipside, and I hope you’ll have as much fun watching it as we had making it.