Offer made to provide support for those workers affected by the studio’s abrupt closure on December 11.
The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and the Art Babbitt Appreciation Society (ABAS) have just announced they’ll be providing free legal support to workers from MPC Vancouver who were recently laid off, just weeks before Christmas, when the studio abruptly closed its doors permanently this past Wednesday. As of now, there is no count as to how many workers were affected.
MPC Film, owned by French multi-national corporation Technicolor, is one of the VFX industry’s leading studios, and is known for its work on films like The Lion King, Ad Astra, Dumbo, and Life of Pi. In a letter sent to staff and reported Tuesday on Reddit, MPC stated that the Vancouver studio “will cease operations effective immediately and refocus its geographical presence to other locations. This decision has not been taken lightly. However, increasing external pressures in Vancouver and more attractive opportunities in other locations have created a challenging environment for the company to sustain its Vancouver office.”
ABAS spokesperson Vanessa Kelly stated, “When we heard that MPC was closing, our first thought was the workers that were being laid off. We want to let those workers know that we will do whatever we can to help them through this difficult process.”
The joint IATSE and ABAS statement went on to note, “Depending on the nature of the layoffs and the contracts these workers have, workers at MPC Vancouver have several options available to them to ensure that they are fairly and properly compensated when they are laid off. The IATSE will provide legal support to workers on a case-by-case basis to evaluate the various options available.”
According to IATSE International Representative Julia Neville, “We want to ensure that these workers are supported and aware of the options they have available to them. We encourage all MPC Vancouver workers to contact us as soon as possible.”
Workers from MPC Vancouver who would like to access this free legal support should contact Ms. Neville at firstname.lastname@example.org. All communications will be strictly confidential.
Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.