"As we set out on the research project, we met the guys and were just blown away," says director Frank McHue. "These were some of the most amazing men we'd ever met. They were so different from the Hollywood, popular-culture stereotype. They're not Leo Blooms. Well, they're sort of Leo Blooms, but not as funny."McHue said it's about time real accountants got their due.
"Our lead in the movie, Chief Morty" - the accountants in the film are not fully identified to protect their privacy come tax season - "he's such a humble guy," said McHue. "We were like, Wow, we need to let the American public know these guys are special. To properly tell their story, we couldn't do it with actors. We just felt like it had to be from the men who've actually experienced it."
The plot, in which the accountants help people and businesses find write-offs they wouldn't have otherwise known existed, is based on actual, real-life experiences of the accountants in the movie.
"The hardest sequence to nail was the explanation of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)," says McHue. "It was a three-week sequence that we needed to shoot completely in six days because of the availability of the guys. You're talking about tax time here. They're swamped!"
Morty said overall, he enjoyed the filming, even if it took a while to bring the directors up to speed. "In the beginning it was a WIP - at first these guys didn't know the difference between an ITR and an IWO," he said, laughing so hard he almost lost a pen out of his pocket protector. "But we set them straight on that pretty darn quick."
Fellow accountant "Fred," also in the film, said he was happy to be able to contribute to the plotline by sharing his actual experiences. "Like that New Year's Eve that time, when all our Zunes crashed," he recalled.
"That was high drama," he added, making a snorting noise.