See SAS (=Stark Industries) in Iron Man 3


SAS World HeadquartersWhen you work at headquarters of the leader in advanced analytics software, you never know who you'll encounter in the lobby. It might be celebrity statistician (and New York Times FiveThirtyEight blogger) Nate Silver, of The Signal and the Noise and election forecasting fame. It might be Donald Wheeler, giant in the quality control field, Deming Medal winner, and author of one of my favorite books, Understanding Variation.

Or, it might even be People magazine's most beautiful woman in the world, Gwyneth Paltrow, on the set of Iron Man 3.

In the movie, SAS serves as headquarters for Stark Industries, and last June we enjoyed a day of filming with Gwyneth, Robert Downey Jr., Jon Favreau, and the whole IM3 gang. There was even a casting call for SAS employees to serve as extras.

Despite my multiple efforts, encouraged by someone who called himself "the casting director," it turned out you couldn't just earn a part the old fashioned way. Instead, there were three requirements:

  1. You had to have a luxury vehicle
  2. You had to be well dressed and well groomed
  3. You had to be under 50 years old.

Unfortunately, I failed miserably on all three. But at least several of my younger, richer, and better looking colleagues made the final cut.

Iron Man 3 opens today at a theater near you.

[See this full account of How SAS became Stark Industries for a day.]


About Author

Mike Gilliland

Product Marketing Manager

Michael Gilliland is a longtime business forecasting practitioner and currently Product Marketing Manager for SAS Forecasting. He is on the Board of Directors of the International Institute of Forecasters, and is Associate Editor of their practitioner journal Foresight: The International Journal of Applied Forecasting. Mike is author of The Business Forecasting Deal (Wiley, 2010) and editor of the free e-book Forecasting with SAS: Special Collection (SAS Press, 2020). He is principal editor of Business Forecasting: Practical Problems and Solutions (Wiley, 2015) and Business Forecasting: The Emerging Role of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (Wiley, 2021). In 2017 Mike receive the Institute of Business Forecasting's Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2021 his paper "FVA: A Reality Check on Forecasting Practices" was inducted into the Foresight Hall of Fame. Mike initiated The Business Forecasting Deal blog in 2009 to help expose the seamy underbelly of forecasting practice, and to provide practical solutions to its most vexing problems.


  1. Pingback: SAS #2 in Fortune Best Companies to Work For - The Business Forecasting Deal

Leave A Reply

Back to Top