Friday afternoon was the Disney hat building for me, spreading joy and flyers for next weeks membership meeting ...
I got a chance to see some 3-D images for the retooled Beauty and the Beast, and I can tell you now, without fear of contradiction, that it looks like ... 3-D. Says an artist:
Part of what's hard is everything is hand-drawn, so you have lots of flat shapes, no highlights on hair, no individual strands, no texture on the sides of faces. That looks fine for hand-drawn animation, but getting the drawings into stereo mode is a challenge ...
Especially when it was never put together that way.
The other subject that came up as I made my rounds was the 45-hour workweeks staring Disneyites in the face. Apparently some are not pleased with it. One conversation I had went like this:
Artist: Is what management doing, expanding the workweek to 45 hours, is that legal?
Me: If you mean can Disney cut wages, since that's what they're doing, the answer is yes. As long as they don't cut anybody's pay below contract minimums, they're within their rights. I think most employees are taking a 15% to 18% hit.
Artist: No, I figured it out. Some people around here are taking a cut of more than 20%.
Me: Hmm. Well, you'd know better than I would.
Artist: The Personal Service Contracts. Did the company get rid of them to hold down wages?
Me: That's what I always thought, and what I told people. I never bought the company line it was to give everyone more "freedom". It was to help contain wage increases.
Artist: They tell us it would be unprofessional if we left in the middle of an assignment.
Me: Since nobody has Personal Service Contracts anymore, that's sort of what they tend to say, harping on the "professionalism" thing. But I've yet to see a company that worries about its professionalism when it lays an employee off at an inconvenient time. If you're leaving for a lot more money someplace else, go ahead and be unprofessional. Just don't expect they'll let you come back real quick. Some people here will probably remember your treason.
But in the long run, I don't think it makes much difference. I've had Disney managers tell me on more than once that this or that animator or tech director "will never work here again!" But whattaya know? A couple of years later, they're working here again. Amazing how that happens. If they need you, they hire you, because it's business.
As you can see, it was a fine afternoon. But then night fell, I got hungry, and so I left to go get dinner.
I'm only willing to keep the work thing going for so long.