In another strong reminder of the ongoing economic disruption in the entertainment business caused by the COVID 19 pandemic, the leading talent agency CAA has announced the dismissal of around 90 agents and executives, 275 of whom, according to information, are on leave diversity. The layoffs will be paid until September 30th. The company will continue to cover health insurance for staff on leave.
While the live action world, which includes VFX production, has been a great success from the pandemic, we're also seeing an unprecedented amount of new animation productions fueled by the growing appetite of streamers like Netflix, HBO Max and Hulu. Live action stars and companies are more sensitive than ever today and are open to animated discussions as the live action industry remains calm.
Recent announcements of animated projects such as Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds & # 39; new Quibi series Futha Mucka; Mike Judge and Comedy Central do a two-season job for a reinterpreted Beavis and Butthead. VFX giant Weta opens Weta Animated to produce original animated film and TV projects; Richard Linklater goes into production with the animated feature film Apollo 10½; The new animated Star Wars: The Bad Batch series, which premieres on Disney + in 2021. These are just a few of the latest happenings in an increasingly crowded and competitive animation production landscape.
CAA employs around 2,100 people worldwide. This spring, the agency cut salaries to avoid downsizing. The then two chairs, Richard Lovett, Bryan Lourd and Kevin Huvane, said they would forego their remaining 2020 salaries. CAA and other agencies have also been involved in ongoing litigation with the Writers Guild of America over packaging fees and the agency's financial stake in manufacturing companies. Many have lost hundreds of writers to the lengthy struggle.
Here is CAA's full statement on the layoffs:
CAA started working remotely earlier this year due to the pandemic. All employees of the company participated in the reduction of the compensation in the hope that we can receive all employees in full by the end of our fiscal year, September 30, 2020.
We abide by this commitment, even for those affected by today's announcement.
However, with a better insight into the COVID 19 challenges of the 2021 financial year, we made the difficult decision to implement staff cuts in addition to our ongoing cost-saving measures.
Starting this week, around 90 agents and managers from departments across the agency will leave the company. We also employ around 275 assistants and other employees. The company will continue to pay the full health insurance plan premiums for those affected.
This is a painful and unprecedented moment, and the words are insufficient. Today we simply say that we express our sincere appreciation and our deepest thanks to our retiring colleagues.
Dan Sarto is the editor and editor-in-chief of Animation World Network.