Up In The Air's Real People Video Interview On The Great Recession
For his Best Picture-nominated film Up In The Air, director Jason Reitman wanted to feature the stories of real people who had lost their jobs in The Great Recession. Uinterview speaks with a few of them to see how they're doing one year later.
- Q: Q: Hi, my name is Ahmed from Miami, Florida. I am curious as to how you were told you were being fired. How did you react? Would you react similarly if you had the opportunity to do it again? - Ahmed Mori
- A: Arthur Hill: Ah, well, they just called me up to HR, you know, pulled me in an office and just, you know, said, 'Hey you are no longer working for the company' and asked for my badge and I was, like, in shock. No, it can't be happening to me, maybe somebody else, but are you sure you got the right person? Then, when it really dawned on me, I began to be angry. Marlene Gorkiewicz: I was notified in advance and then received a letter. I worked for a major airline for 27 years. But, you know, when you receive the letter it really sinks in, that it's really happening, and you basically just go through the motions and realize that all the time that you spent there, that you are not going to be having a paycheck or seeing your friends and it really sinks in. Kevin Pilla: Yeah, I had some second ideas about how I would've handled it, what I would've said differently. Not necessarily mean and hateful but after it sinks it, what they've done and what you've sacrificed for the company and your loyalty and, like Arthur always says, you were the model employee.
- Q: Q: Thanks. I'd like to follow up by asking about any progress you've made with regards to recent job searches. - Ahmed Mori
- A: KP: I am currently employed again. I am the Director of Patient-Client Services for National Billing Services in St. Louis. MG: And I am currently, I'm still unemployed and it will be a year this march.
- Q: Hi, this is Chris from New York. How has being in the movie affected your life thus far? - Chris Roberts
- A: AH: Oh, I have to say it completely changed my life because it gave me an opportunity to get my story out there and to realize, you know, like, working with Jason Reitman, who is a genius and we just like to give credit where its due, you know, this man had the insight and the sensitivity to pick out real people to be a part of this great movie, you know, and its more than a movie, you know, its reality.
- Q: Thanks and as a follow up, what do you think about executives today that collect $100 million bonuses. - Chris Roberts
- A: KP: Like I said that's probably something you don't want to put on film either, especially considering they're about ready to go belly up and everybody is losing their money with them and they turn around and pay their executives millions of dollars in bonuses. Something's gotta be done, you know, I am a firm believer that government has to let capitalism take its course, you know, but somebody needs to step in when these large corporations like AIG continue to make stupid decisions.
- Q: And how do you think Obama is doing as president? - Chris Roberts
- A: AH: I think he is doing a good job. I think it's easy to point fingers but until you've had his job, it's easier said than done. MG: Right. AH: You know, it didn't take just one or two days to get us into this mess so its certainly not going to take a few days to get us out. MG: It's certainly not a quick fix, and you just need to give it some time, and, definitely, you know, there is no quick fix. AH: The country as a whole needs to come together. We are all Americans, we all love our country and we need to stop pointing fingers and blaming this person and blaming that person because we are all Americans and we love America and we need to start working together more. Let's pray for the president. KP: We need to stop letting the government be the one that takes the world to change things. It's up to us, it always has been. Big government I'm not a fan of, but it's not just President Obama's responsibility, you know. Congress is much to blame, large corporations are to blame, and there is a fix and a solution, it's just we all need to work together to find it AH: Yes. KP: And I think the more government gets involved as a whole, I think the more things tend to go downhill.
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