Thursday, September 09, 2010

Down on Riverside Drive

I spent part of the morning on Riverside Drive at the Hat Building. (Riverside Drive in Burbank, CA, in case you're wondering.)

Diz Co. keeps rolling out new finaled scenes for Tangled in the entrance hallway, and they keep looking gorgeous ...

The lighters have been working six-day weeks (twelve hour days) but they're now down to the last few weeks of production. One lighter asked me how DreamWorks Animation manages to have so many projects in work. I told him they put a lot of stuff into development, some of it doesn't pant out, but they keep feeding their story teams. (It isn't complicated.)

Upstairs, a Disney artist related:

"A lot of the Tangled animators were laid off, but some of them are okay with it, since they're going over to DreamWorks Animation and they're pretty excited, moving on with their careers.

"We're scheduled to finish animation on Winnie the Pooh in early October. Supervising animators were wondering what was going to happen next, and wanted to hear from Andrew Millstein, since they hadn't heard from him for awhile.

"Andrew had a meeting with them last week, and let them know that nobody else is getting laid off, that they're all staying ...

Which is good news, yes?

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm left reading your posts about Disney Animation with a held back notion that you're somehow twisting words, or speaking from your own personal agenda.

There's just something different, and I don't trust your A. Knowledge B. Interpretations

Anonymous said...

I think Steve is channeling Roy Disney.

Anonymous said...

^ Talk about a waste of space for a post. If you don't like what's been written here, feel free to not look at this website and continue on your merry way, no one is forcing you to read it.

Thanks for the info Steve, keep it coming!

Anonymous said...

"One lighter asked me how DreamWorks Animation manages to have so many projects in work. I told him they put a lot of stuff into development, some of it doesn't pant out, but they keep feeding their story teams. (It isn't complicated.)"

Well, that and they used their mega hits to fund other mega hits and hired 1500 people to keep the machine running. And thats just Glendale. Disney hasnt had a bona-fide hit since...Lion King?

Anonymous said...

So, Tarzan, Mulan and Lilo & Stitch weren't big hits?

Floyd Norman said...

“Hasn’t had a bonafide hit since Lion KIng?"

Disney isn’t some little start up with limited resources. They’re a mega-corporation with power to do whatever they want. Clearly, they don’t want a lot of stuff in development like their local competitor.

This is not a criticism, just an observation.

Anonymous said...

Totally correct, Floyd.
Having worked at numerous studios (in management), I know the amount of money needed to keep development and even animation crews around is "pennies" compared to the monies the companies have available and are spending elsewhere.

For companies like Disney, Fox, WB, Starz and such it is not an issue of financial ability, but upper management preference to reduce development funds and layoff crews.

Anonymous said...

Development at WDAS has been thin for a long time (now finally getting better.) Management laid off many veteran story artists -- Cartwright, Morris, etc. -- after "Princess and the Frog" and didn't have much cooking.

It wasn't thin and underpowered because of unfortunate accidents; it was conscious choice. They developed a minimal slate and it didn't work out.

You can spin it anyway you want, but there is nothing in the production pipeline after "Tangled" and "Pooh" because of decisions made years ago. That's the reason morale is crappy on the first and second floors. People are getting let go because there's no work for them to do, and they're not happy about it.

Anonymous said...

"You can spin it anyway you want, but there is nothing in the production pipeline after "Tangled" and "Pooh" because of decisions made years ago."

Then why the fuck am I so busy?

Anonymous said...

Lion King: 780mil worldwide
Tarzan: 450mil worldwide
Mulan: 300
Lilo: 273

So.......no.

Anonymous said...

So, if Pixar doesn't make close to a billion dollars from now on, Toy Story 3 will be their last "bona-fide hit"? Got it.

Anonymous said...

Then why the fuck am I so busy?

Because you're one of the core group who's going to be working their butt off after all the production layoffs.

Either that, or you're over at DWA.

Anonymous said...

""Andrew had a meeting with them last week, and let them know that nobody else is getting laid off, that they're all staying ..."

Oh, well that is reassuring then . He certainly wouldn't lie to them.

Anonymous said...

If he used the phrase " we think of you like family" you're all screwed....

Site Meter