Although Hollywood has ground to a halt because of the coronavirus shutdown, there’s still work out there in the animation industry, and the WGA is reminding its members that many animated shows are covered by the guild’s contract.
“The necessity of social distancing has halted nearly all live-action production in our industry,” WGA West leaders told their members today. “However, many animated programs have continued production with crews working remotely from home. As a result, we have heard from members that studios and producers are increasingly interested in developing animated projects.
“This is an important moment to remind you that the WGA can and does cover writing for animation,” the guild added. “If a producer tells you, ‘The Writers Guild doesn’t cover animation,’ that is simply not true. Many prominent animated television shows — on broadcast (Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, The Simpsons), cable (American Dad), and streaming (BoJack Horseman, Big Mouth, Disenchantment, F Is for Family) — are covered by WGA contracts. In fact, our Contracts Department recently negotiated deals to cover new animated series for Netflix (Q-Force, Hoops), Amazon (Undone), Apple TV+ (Central Park) and HBO Max (The Prince). The WGA also covers animated feature projects, including soon to be released Wendall & Wild for Netflix and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run for Paramount.”
The Animation Guild, IATSE Local 839, also covers animation writers and story persons.
“When opening negotiations to write an animated project,” WGA leaders told their members, “you and your representatives should take the stance that your work will be covered by the WGA. A WGA contract will ensure you have residuals, script fees, credit protections, and contributions to the WGA pension and health funds, more important now than ever. The protections and benefits in a Writers Guild contract provide an important financial cushion in a career that can be unpredictable during even the best of times.”
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