Posted by David Brewster on March 19, 1999 at 04:34:58:
As an animator at DreamWorks I can pass on some interesting thoughts I think.
To tell the truth the underground has always been here. For 15 years I worked as an independant taking work from around the world. Many of the European artists now at DreamWorks were my peers on many of those films. The gathering of that talent was not as expensive as many believe and truthfully the people at Disney were being paid yearly bonuses that would equal the highest amounts paid by DreamWorks PRIOR to Jefferys split. In all fairness to DW it needs to be known that they were paying only competative prices. Not extreme.
Now I can understand your call for revolt but I must say that not all execs are useless. I have learned over time what a good producer can do for a project or how they can destroy it. To try and blame all management for these problems is not really fair. The ones that cause these problems are actually few though there effects are far reaching.
Where the revolution is really happening is personal paint and pencil test programs. That was always where the cost was beyond the average animator. That is not so now.
The surge of studios came with the smell of money and the belief that all it took was that same said money invested. The awakening was just as sudden when they realized it took more than just cash. Film, story and humor are rarely the forte of management. I think what really srikes home with me is that the problem tends to be that none of these studios actually believe the humanist ideals that they put in their films. What Walt Disney put in his early films wasnít sharp or hip, it was honest and hopeful. They really believed in the future and had hope for all people to find their way to happiness through adversity.
And last, the road to real revolution doesnít lie in blame or accusation, it lies in doing. A fanatical desire to express. Blame is always too easy and totally nonconstructive. You canít change a syustem you donít own. It requires you create your own and teach by example. A feat much easier to muse on than to do. There are already artists out there deserving of promotion and in need of your help. Publisize them. Promote their work. Educate people who need to know there are alternatives. Do this and the revolution will come and it will take no more effort than that. The studios will not heed your message of strength but they will take notice of the publics reaction to things worthy of trying. Good luck in your future. Dave.
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