Manic Studios – Larry Is Happy

Australian Workers Film Guide


A spin off from the Fair Go For Billionaires campaign, this satirical commercial highlights how mining bosses hire overseas workers because they have no workplace rights. The piece opens with fictional mining boss Larry Pines smiling grotesquely into the camera, along with the voiceover “This is Larry. Larry is happy…..because he’s just hired three hundred workers from overseas and they’re willing to work without their rights.” Over images of Larry addressing overseas workers at a company induction, the voiceover announces that these workers don’t know about overtime, sick leave or holiday pay. Pines shouts at an inductee; he doesn’t pay him to ask questions, which is followed by a scene in which Pines activates a trap door and a guest worker drops through the floor, “And if they complain, he can put them back on the plane without a word.”

Fair Go For Billionaires was a CFMEU – Mining & Energy Division campaign opposing Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s promise to repeal the new Resources Tax, thereby diverting tax dollars intended for public purposes back to rich and powerful mining companies.

Special Notes/Achievements

Manic Studios was established for the trade union movement with the goal of producing satirical films and videos for union campaigns. Charles Firth, an Australian comedian and member of the famed The Chaser satirical comedy show, was the company’s creative director.

Author: J Bird, 2023

Duration: 40 secs

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Film Producer: Piers Grove, Xanon Murphy,

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