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WrapPRO Roundtable: Animation Guild Members speak out on poor wages, pandemic pressure and a disrespect for their craft

Last week at CinemaCon, animation legends Phil Lord and Chris Miller showed off a work-in-progress preview of “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse,” noting that it is the first Hollywood animated feature to have an animation staff of over 1,000 people working on its ambitious blend of comic book palettes and designs.

But as work on this sequel to an acclaimed Oscar winner continues, animation workers are organizing in Hollywood’s latest major labor push. For the past several months, IATSE Local 839, also known as The Animation Guild, has been in talks with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on a new contract; and similar to its live-action counterparts at IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees), the pandemic has galvanized animators to push for what they call a “New Deal for Animation.”

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