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Stephen Fry lends voice to animated film promoting 4-day work week


By Ellen Ormesher | Senior Reporter

June 7, 2022 | 4 min read

Beloved broadcaster Stephen Fry has provided the voiceover to an animated film that aims to encourage public support around a new approach to the working week.

4 day week

Mox will also be conducting a study into the effects the four day week has on creativity/ Image via Mox

‘Change the Week’ takes a look at the notion of the “traditional” working week, to galvanise support for a brighter future for workers featuring more free time, happier people and a healthier planet – without any detriment to businesses’ bottom lines.

It has been developed by creative agency Mox, which is currently taking part in the biggest global trial of the four-day week to date – ’4 Day Week Global’.

The brainchild of director Ian Pons Jewell, the short film features bespoke animations from artists including Alex Jenkins, Amanda Bonaiuto, Pia Graff, Dal Park, Cheng, Matteo Dang and Juan Cartoons.

In the UK, the household-name broadcaster and actor Stephen Fry narrates; with Paz Vega, Marika Matsumoto and the late Gaspard Ulliel providing voiceovers in Spain, Japan, and France, respectively. All of the voiceover talent lent their time to the project pro bono in the hope of encouraging public support around a new approach to the working week.

The creative agency behind the film, Mox, is currently one of 30 companies in the UK currently taking part in a six-month trial, run by 4 Day Week Global in partnership with leading think tank Autonomy, 4 Day Week UK Campaign and researchers at Cambridge University, Boston College and Oxford University.

The productivity-focused, reduced-hour model of work will see more than 1,700 employees getting a paid day off weekly throughout the course of the trial. In a telling sign of the current consensus of the advertising industry, Mox is among only a small number of creative shops that have signed up to the trial.

Matt Bolton, co-founder and creative director of the agency says Mox was born out of “the frustration with the outdated ways of working myself, Oscar [Eavis, co-founder and planning director], and Xander [Pietrovito, co-founder and director] experienced at the traditional ad agencies.”

“Moving towards a four-day week is the next step in our evolution. As creative businesses, we’re meant to be touchstones of the future, using creativity to drive the innovation, disruption and change that trickles down to the rest of society. But creativity needs time, it needs inspiration, and it’s seldom found stuck at your desk on a Friday at the end of a 60 hour week. Formalising a way to help our employees regain control of their week and their free time is something the industry should have been doing long before now. We’re excited to take the first step on that journey.”

As part of its involvement in the pilot, Mox will also be conducting a study into the effects the four day week has on creativity - with the ambition to gain a deeper understanding of the link between free time, mental health, and the ability for creativity to flourish. The results will be shared post-trial in early 2023.

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