Adam Scott has been patiently waiting to get a lead role in “Severance” for almost four years and had doubted that he would ever get a chance. Finally, however, the odds are in his favor.
“I just figured, somewhere along the line, someone else is going to want to do this, and this is going to slip away from me,” the comedian said in an interview. “All along, I was hoping that I would get to be part of it. It sounds corny, but it really is the kind of role I’ve been waiting my whole career for.”
“Severance” premieres on Friday on Apple TV+. Scott plays a unique leading-man role, portraying a sorrowful and office-drone protagonist named Mark.
“I couldn’t stop thinking about it,” Scott says, recounting the moment he first heard about the project. “It’s just a fun, hooky idea, but then there are all of the possible implications of it, which is what made me continue to come back to the idea.”
“Severance” is set in an office where employees such as Mark are allowed to experience a process that utterly sets apart their work life and personal life. “Severed” employees are not aware of their lives outside the office for eight hours a day, while their “innies,” company jargon, continue their workday. Their “outies,” on the other hand, do not know what’s going on at work; hence, there is no risk of taking their work home with them.
It indeed sounds like heaven until you begin thinking of those “implications” – “Severance” does, in an appalling, stimulating manner. In Mark’s case, he underwent the process following the death of his wife in a car accident, as a way to cope with his grief.
“Mark has made a conscious decision to not move on from it,” Scott revealed. “He doesn’t want to heal because I think healing would mean saying goodbye forever, right? So rather than sit in it and feel it, he’d rather just switch off for eight to ten hours a day.”
Scott recounts that he was initially attached to “Severance” in January 2017. Then, at the Sundance Film Festival in the middle of “standing in the snow,” he received a call from Ben Stiller, who had read the pilot script by Dan Erickson.
Scott’s doubt about getting the role was nonsense. Stiller claims that the moment he read the script, he immediately thought of Scott as “the only guy to do the show with.”