Behind the scenes: accountants in the film industry
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We’ll be honest, accountants don’t always get the best representation in films. They’re usually depicted as bespectacled and more than a little bit nerdy. Not to mention that they rarely get to save from the world from evil or perform a heroic rescue, and are almost never in the starring role.
But all that might just be about to change with this year’s film The Accountant, starring Ben Affleck as - yes - a bookkeeper. He’s number one in our round-up of our favourite movie accountants.
The film isn’t out yet, but we’re already excited by the prospect of an action-packed adventure about a finance professional. Affleck stars as a gifted accountant with some dangerous clients. There’s also an indication that he’s pretty good with a sniper rifle too.
Chartered accountant Louis Tully is the hapless CPA who lives in a building which just so happens to be the portal to another, not-so-pleasant dimension.
In between getting possessed by an evil demi-god and flirting awkwardly with his neighbour (played by Sigourney Weaver), he finds time to host a party - but just for his clients, “so that it’s tax-deductible”. He may be a nerd, but he’s a lovable one!
In the true story of the pursuit by law enforcement of legendary gangster Al Capone - Kevin Costner’s Elliot Ness might be the gun-toting star, but it’s accountant Wallace who’s just as instrumental in bringing down Capone’s empire.
Despite being accused of a variety of charges, tax evasion was the eviction that stuck. And, according to the movie at least, it was Wallace that was the man behind it.
Less heroic than some others on the list, Leo Bloom is the conniving accountant who conspires with Broadway impresario Max Bialystock to bilk investors in a new musical. Leo’s plan? Put on a show so awful that it’s sure to be a flop - then pocket the investments when it closes after its first night.
Unfortunately for Bloom, the numbers don’t add up - the tasteless Springtime for Hitler becomes Broadway’s latest hit musical, and before he knows it he’s scrabbling to pay back investors.
Another accountant of questionable morality, Jonathan ‘The Duke’ Mardukas is the slippery Mafia bookkeeper who everyone is after - especially Robert De Niro’s bounter hunter, Jack Walsh.
The Duke’s in possession of the financial documents that could help the Feds put his bosses into jail for good - but they won’t mean a thing unless he reaches Los Angeles in time to testify.
With just 24 hours to get from New York to LA, it’s a race against time for De Niro to get The Duke to court, and collect his own reward.
Mild-mannered forensic accountant Gamble hides some dark secrets – not least that he used to moonlight as a pimp under the pseudonym ‘Gator’, and that he’s had at least two wives walk out on him.
It might sound dark, but Will Ferrell couldn’t be funnier as the split-personality bookkeeper in this action-packed cop spoof. Mark Walhberg plays his opposite number as they race to prove the guilt of a crooked British billionaire.
Albert Brennaman is the bumbling accountant at an investment bank, desperate to win the heart of one of his clients, who calls on the help of Will Smith’s ‘Dr Date’ - the eponymous Hitch.
Although Albert’s truly terrible dancing almost derails his efforts, with Hitch’s help he manages to win the day - and he all he had to do was be himself (aww!). It’s not often you get a romantic comedy about an accountant, and we think this might be our favourite.