A Birmingham, Alabama, general contractor gave Santa Claus a much-needed vacation.
At least, that’s the plot of a video from Brasfield & Gorrie, titled “Santa’s Year Off.” The plot revolves around Kris Kringle feeling burned out, and Mrs. Claus calling on Chairman Miller Gorrie and CEO Jim Gorrie to get their company to help save the holiday season.
“Of course, Mrs. Claus, I still owe you and Santa a favor or two,” Miller Gorrie says in the video.
The video is a long-standing tradition inspired by company executives’ love of Christmas, said Meg Burton, communications director. As far back as 2001, Brasfield & Gorrie has produced the shorts, which were originally custom DVDs mailed to clients. They often feature Santa in predicaments, so the joke in 2022 was giving the man in red the year off.
“People get really excited about each year’s video, and that pushes us to get even more creative every time,” Burton said.
Planning for the film begins in February, Burton said. The communications and marketing team dreams up storylines, settles on a direction with company leadership, writes a script, casts employees and schedules filming days. The CEO and chairman are always key players, Burton said, and the contractor hires an outside videographer to shoot and edit the video.
Some years also include a multimedia element. This year, the contractor launched an instagram account — @brasfieldgorriesanta – to capture his year off.
The video builds a sense of camaraderie and belonging among the team, she added, saying that employees play each of the roles, including Santa and Mrs. Claus. The excitement of spotting familiar faces in the video helps make it fun for the entire company.
“We firmly believe our exceptional people are what make Brasfield & Gorrie special, and they make this video special, too — even if no one is winning an Academy Award for acting,” Burton said.
Watch the video here: