Todd Hamilton is a call center manager for a large American novelty company. He's good at his job and feeling optimistic about his prospects, but his life is thrown into chaos when his bosses find out how much they can save by outsourcing the entire center to a small town in India. His job in Seattle no longer exists, so Todd is given a simple ultimatum: he can move to India, or be fired.
Todd arrives in his new office to find that managing an Indian call center is about more than people skills; the operators know next to nothing about American culture, and the products they're trying to sell - to Americans - are largely alien to them. Hilarity Ensues.
Along the way, "Mister Toad" (the accent is a problem) meets a beautiful woman named Asha, and begins slowly falling in love with the culture of his new home. D'awww.
It was loosely adapted into an NBC sitcom of the same name that ran from September 23, 2010 to May 12, 2011. It ran for 1 season of 22 episodes before being cancelled despite a campaign by fans to save the show.
- Accidental Misnaming: There is a Running Gag about the Indian characters mispronouncing Todd's name as "Toad." This was a one-off gag in the TV series but seems to have been dropped.
- Arranged Marriage: Asha
- Bigot with a Crush: Downplayed, because he isn’t downright evil, but Todd is pretty prejudiced against the Indians in the beginning of the movie and he falls in love with Asha.
- Bittersweet Ending: At least for Todd and Asha.
- Brick Joke: Todd's phone getting stolen. Also the fact that the call center is under construction and is missing an exterior wall. note
- Brief Accent Imitation: Todd and Asha imitate each other's accents on the ferry and it is just awful.
- Culture Clash: Both Todd's experience of India, and the call center workers' attempts to understand their American customers.
- Defrosting the Ice Queen: A male example with Todd, who doesn’t care for India when he first gets there. Not until Asha suggests that he get to know the place. By the end of the movie he is a much better person in general.
- Fish out of Water: Todd in India.
- Gilligan Cut: "Dave, I'm not going to India."
- And at the very end: "Who can I send to China?" Cut to a pair of shoes walking briskly along an airline terminal. It's Puro, with a huge smile; since he didn't lose his employment after all, he was able to marry his fiancee, and she's right behind him, also with a huge smile. Aww.
- It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: Todd happens to be in India in time to catch Holi (The Festival of Colors).
- Number Two: Puro to Todd. In the TV series, he's given a different name (Rajiv) and a different personality.
- Operator from India: Part of the basic premise
- Queer People Are Funny: In the beginning of the movie Auntie Ji asks Todd if he doesn’t have a girlfriend because he’s gay. It’s played as a joke.
- There Is Only One Bed: When Todd and Asha are forced to get a hotel, when a ferry fire strands them on an island overnight.
- Separated by a Common Language: The Indian characters speak English, but without American terminology, resulting in such things as an operator trying to sell an eraser while calling it a "rubber," which means "condom" in America.
- Sympathetic Adulterer: Asha. It’s justified because she’s in an Arranged Marriage.
- Unusual Euphemism: In-universe example of holiday in Goa.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Todd is shocked to see a live cow standing in the unfinished call center building. When Todd questions it, Puro thinks he's talking about something else.Todd: Puro, what is that?
Puro: (indicating a device with a large digital readout) Oh, this? This our MPI monitor, Minutes Per Incident. This going to go up on the wall. This is the average time our agents solve the call in. (Todd points to the cow) What? Oh, that's just a cow. Must have wandered in.
- This is Truth in Television since cows in India are given free reign to go where they please.
- Verbed Title: It's what happens to Todd's job, and he follows it to India.