Sysadmin contest winner to star in movie

IT pro Mike Mahan is trading his syslogs for a script. Temporarily, anyway.

Mahan is headed to Hollywood to film a YouTube-length movie in which he'll play the role of the sysadmin hero. The movie's sponsor, Qumu, hasn't revealed all the details of the plot, but the IT superhero will save the day. A futuristic dirigible is involved, and there are some communications issues that need to be fixed, hints Ray Hood, president and CEO of Qumu.


Mahan was tapped for the role after winning a contest Qumu launched in July on . The annual event, now in its 12th year, is designed to elicit thanks for the unsung heroes who keep corporate desktops, servers and networks running. Ted Kekatos, the originator of SysAdmin Day, helped select the winner of Qumu's contest.

The prize package got the attention of Mahan, a senior IT specialist at TPI Composites in Warren, R.I. "Most times in IT-related contests, someone is willing to give you an or a piece of their software. Where else are you offered the chance to be in film that's professionally produced? This type of awards package you can't buy," Mahan says.

Qumu, an enterprise video platform provider, hired video art director and filmmaker Jerry O'Flaherty to make the film. The vendor and filmmaker have worked together before; O'Flaherty made a 90-second film for Qumu titled "" in which a quick-thinking sysadmin saves the Enterprise spaceship from destruction.