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After the Axe

1981
56 min., colour, 16mm
English
Director Sturla Gunnarsson
Producer Steve LucasSturla Gunnarsson
Executive Producer Arthur Hammond
Writer Steve Lucas
Cinematographer Andreas Poulsson
Editor Roger Mattiussi
Sound Bryan DayJean-Pierre JoutelRoger MattiussiMike Hoogenboom
Music Patricia CullenSharon Smith
Narration Roger Mattiusi
Principal Cast Randy SolomonAnne ChristisonJanine ManatisJames Douglas
Production Company National Film Board of Canada
This docudrama examines executive management terminations and the growth industry of relocation counsellors. Biff Wilson (James Douglas), a senior marketing executive, is let go from a major food company after fifteen years of solid service. After losing his status and security, he is relegated to the role of dependent house-husband. As a result, his children come to resent him and his former colleagues avoid him.

Utilizing non-actors placed in real-life situations, After the Axe had the cooperation of the business community, which provided the authentic locations and even helped script actual scenes on set. The character of Biff is a composite figure based on extensive conversations with fired executives; the others in the film play themselves. A damning account of a corporate culture that stresses success over compassion, After the Axe received an Academy AwardŽ nomination for Documentary Feature.

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