Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Back at Disney Feature

This afternoon I was back at Disney's Tujunga Studio, going through the first floor (animation, character technical directors) of the Mouse's sprawling production facility for its big Fall release. (A guard at the gate said: Weren't you just here?", I replied: "Yeah. But I'm old, I don't get around like I used to. So I need two days to accomplish what I once did in one.") ...

In the big common area, there was a long sequence of Moana on a big screen, playing on a loop. The water, tropical light and character animation inside it were outstanding, and based on this clip and the animation snippets have playing on their computers, the picture is going to be another major money-maker.

Right now, however, the staff is deep into production:

"We've been doing fifty-five hour weeks, but we can handle that. I don't think the number of hours are going to get heavier because the studio has hired a lot of people to help get the movie out. It's when you get up to seventy and eighty-hour weeks that things get tough. I don't think that's going to happen with Moana." ...

Another animator wanted to know if the Tujunga Building was "the dumpiest" studio site I visited, because it was the dumpiest for him. I allowed as how the Disney Sonora building gave Tujunga a close run for its money back when there was major renovations on the second floor (complete with jack hammer sound effects) and plaster dust fell on Disney Television Animation employees on the first floor like summer rain.

Finally, some tech directors asked me about the costs of the Guild's 401(k) Plan (the John Oliver segment about investing on Last Week Tonight has made members aware of expenses. Other staffers wanted to know the mechanics of the Motion Picture Industry Pension and Health Plan.

I explained how it works as best I could. Something like this:


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