Pic inspired by Buckley quote in book

Origins: “Seven years ago I found this book ‘Up in the Air’ at Book Soup. … What made me pick up the book was that there was a quote on it from Christopher Buckley (author of ‘Thank You for Smoking’). The book spoke to me on various levels — here was a guy who fired people for a living; and I’m drawn to tricky characters who wade in political waters. … He collects air miles, which is something I do. I brought the book to my father and said, ‘You should option this to direct,’ knowing in my heart that I intended to.”

Funding: “I approached DreamWorks with George Clooney already attached to my screenplay.”

High hurdles: “Shooting in five cities in 50 days as well as four international airports. … Airports by nature don’t want you to shoot there, from all facets at the ticket gate, check-in. … Cabling generators was a nightmare; we had to cable from miles away. All your equipment had to be sniffed by dogs.”

Domino effect: “I wrote eight roles for actors that I had in mind, who wound up playing them. I had already worked with them or knew them.”

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