Handyman Lawrence returns in Walmart’s newest ‘Workplace House’ business
Office Space is back in the office water cooler discussion.
23 years after becoming a cult classic about frustrations at work, Walmart’s ever-current Office Space crew has been brought back to life.
In a promotional campaign leading up to Black Friday on November 25, Walmart revived the 1999 film with Initech regulars.
There’s the smug Gary Cole back in his role as Bill Lumbergh, manager of Initech. Frustrated programmer Samir Nagheenanajar (Ajay Naidu) also returns. There’s also Michael Bolton – the real character, not the character played by David Herman – and there’s Lawrence (Diedrich Bader), the craftsman known for installing the dry stone walls at Las Colinas.
Best of all is Nina (Kinna McInroe), who puts callers on hold with her cheeky “Thanks for calling Initech, Nina is speaking, hold on a minute.” And the overly cheeky female temp (Jennifer Jane Emerson) offers, “Oooh! Looks like someone has a case of Monday!”
Walmart is expanding its Black Friday approach, reminding shoppers that many of its deals and bargains appear online early in the week instead of Wednesdays and Black Friday. The ads are shown in episodic form every Monday in November. Here they are in order:
“What could be better than putting the spotlight on the Film Office Space and drawing attention to Monday,” said Lea Ciskowski Shackelford, Walmart’s senior manager of global communications.
The film has strong ties to Texas. Former Garland resident Mike Judge directed and filmed portions of Office Space in Dallas and Austin. Judge also played the role of Stan, the flair-obsessed manager at Chotchkie’s.
Jennifer Aniston and former Garland resident Mike Judge share a scene in Office Space.(20th Century Fox / 20th Century Fox)
Judge was inspired by animated shorts he saw at the Inwood Theater, he said in a 2015 interview with Sportsradio 96.7 FM/1310 The Ticket (KTCK-AM). He went to the Richardson Public Library and looked at books on animation.
“The first thing I ever finished animated was called Office Space, and it was Milton with a stapler,” said Judge. “I animated it right there in Richardson. I did it all in my house with a small Bolex film camera.”