Today was my Disney Afternoon.
I spent two and a half hours at Disney Animation Studios vaunted hat building, helping out with the ratification vote for the Disney-IATSE TSL/TTL agreements ...
And what, you might ask, are the TSL/TTL agreements?
They are "The Secret Lab/The Traveling Lab" union contracts that were first negotiated by Disney and the IA at the end of 1999. Initially, these agreements covered visual effects.
(That's where the name "The Secret Lab" comes from. It was the handle for Diz's internal visual effects unit after Disney purchased the visual effects house Dream Quest and merged it with the animated feature unit. The division did viz effx for a number of films before the Big Mouse discovered -- as other large film companies had found out before it -- that there's no significant money doing visual effects for live-action films, and studio overhead makes effects on studio lots non-competitive with Mom and Pop sub-contractors.)
Today, the Secret Lab contract -- which is patterned on TAG's contract -- covers most animation employees at DAS. And from three to five p.m., those employees trundled downstairs to the big conference room to vote on the new deal (which had similar bump-ups to the TAG contract: 3.5% annual wage/pension-health fund contributions), after which the ballots were counted. The final percentages:
Yes -- 87%
No -- 13%
So we're good to go for another three years. And then we do it again.