Posted by Dave on March 31, 1999 at 01:44:06:
In Reply to: A sacrifice must be made! posted by Ryan on March 29, 1999 at 17:58:42:
Glad you brought this up. Before you determine who is making too much you have to realize that it isnít the artists going in and demanding millions, itís the producers who set the price. The truth is that it has never been in our control. Do you want the union to go in and bargin down for everyone ? The point being that the wages are not always as high as you say and the people you hurt will outnumber the people you help. Now also keep in mind that inbetweener who makes 52 k a year is also the first let go. That the demands to finish that work are usually pretty harsh and that it is a pretty thankless job with little or no recognition for doing it right. I find it hard to take money from anyone who is in that position. Now when you say that someone has paid their dues, what will we use as a yardstick to determine this ? How many films they have worked on ? How fast they are ? How well they do the job ?
Iím not against lower wages. Iím all for it but before we start slashing it will have to be determined what measurement you will use. In Toronto I was directing on a film that the producer told me he could only afford 250 a week for each member of the crew (including myself). I agreed and set about working. A few weeks later I accidentally came across an invoice. It was from the cel painter (yes, that far back) and they were getting 500 a week. He had made a deal with them and screwed the my crew. I brought it to the producer and he brought in the incredibly angry painter who proceeded to tell me in so many ways that I was a bastard. That person had made their deal and they couldnít believe that I had been given any control over wages. I explained that my crew had taken low wages on the basis that the producer said it was all he could afford. The painter was unimpressed and stomped out. They were let go, despite the fact it was the producers fault for lying to the rest of us. He had no choice or the entire crew would have walked (myself included). What Iím trying to say is that you have absolutely no idea what the costs are and where the money is going. Producers decide and make their own deals. Blaming the person lowest on the ladder seems to be exactly the opposite of what Charles is asking. Attacking each other is not constructive nor will it solve the problem. Donít begrudge someone who spends 60 hour weeks in an INSECURE JOB the rare moment of being paid well. It wonít stop bad decisions or limit waste. The cost of producing good films hasnít risen, finding good films is harder. Point out to me anyone who wouldnít take a cut in pay to just work on a good film and would be totally surprised.
: Ive been reading this website and I think everyone has some great ideas about the industy and new solutions to these rising problems. But I believe there is one major issue that everyone so convienently denies. A sacrafice must be made on our parts. Lets face it, wages are high. I even think that they are too high. If you wanna keep reading this article then you must purge yourself of all your greediness and come down to earth. I believe this is a reality. For the crunch of IRon Giant they hired on some inbetweeners at $1000 a week. Thats $52,000 a year! Entry Level posision! You dont even make that as a doctor your first year. Dont get me wrong, If you have paid your dues and deserve it, its rightfully yours. But you gotta earn that kind of money with alot of experience and a good reputation. It is starting to cost a whoppin amount of money to make a film and no wonder studios are so skitzy with there money lately. Now Im not saying we should all go in and demand lower wages. Any normal human will get as much as he/she can in a contract. But I do belicve that if animated movies didnt cost so much, there would be more of them. That would mean a more steady employment. There was some talk about the ideas of starting our own independent studios here in LA. There is no way a small independent studio can survive with the wages that are out there. Wages ARE going to drop. Thats a fact. I just hope the greed of a group of vocal spoild brats dont ruin it for us all. Thats the sacrafice were gonna have to make. I would take a pay cut for steady employment any day. Id be very interested in everyones comments to see if Im in agreeance with everyone.
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