Friday, May 09, 2014

Where Are TAG Members Working?

Okay, so unionized animation is growing in Souther California. So where, exactly, are those artists and writers and tech people employed? This might help:

(Click on the technicolor pie to make it bigger.)

As you can see, we have large employers (Disney-DreamWorks) mid-size employers (Nick, Fox Animation, Cartoon Network, etc.) and a variety of smaller employees.

I've gotten inquiries along the lines of "Why is employment going up so much?" like it's a surprise. But actually the upward trend in cartoon work has been going for a while now. The question is, why is it happening? Even as visual effects work is going south. The answers:

1) Theatrical and television animation is the most profitable sector of the move and tv business.

2) Animation continues to be an evergreen product. Once it's created and starts generating revenue, it continues to generate revenue. (See Doo, Scooby, Duck, Donald and Smurfs, The among other examples.)

3) Animation, particularly television animation, is cost efficient. Half-hour cartoon episodes are created in a variety of formats (CG, hand-drawn, flash) at a variety of price points. And the younger demographic groups at which much animation is aimed are as happy to watch flash animation as they are CG animation.)

4) We are presently in a virtuous upward spiral where profits generate more cartoon creation which generates more employment.

I've likely skipped over important drivers (VFX soldier has his ideas here). Feel free to supply your own.


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