QED International Layoffs Following Box Office Blunder ‘Sabotage’

By | Monday April 14, 2014 @ 6:16pm PDT

qedQED International has laid off five employees (which includes support staff and a junior lawyer) three weeks after the disastrous opening of Sabotage, directed by David Ayer and led by aging action star Arnold Schwarzenegger. Sabotage-Movie-HD-ImagesThe bloody pic flopped and is hanging on by its fingernails in the Box office Top 20 — it’s No. 18 in its third weekend — having grossed a mere $10M. John Hegeman, president of worldwide marketing, is still on board as he helps prepare the debut of the next Ayer-directed film, Fury, which has some star power in Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf and audience favorite Michael Pena. QED slapped down $1M to buy the WWII spec from Ayer over a year ago; it will bow in November. One insider said that QED is reallocating resources for development spending. To that point, today QED purchased Yellowstone Falls, a 52-page spec script by Dan Kunka, winning what was said to be a heated bidding war. The film, which will be produced by Kevin Misher and QED President Bill Block, is about a mother wolf who must battle to save her cubs after being separated from her mate following an apocalyptic event. The film will have nearly no dialogue and few actors. Sounds a little like Disneynature’s Bears — with mutated humans thrown in. Read More »

Comments 24

Sony Laying Off 216 – That Is Just In Culver City; Distrib Vet John Cacavas Leaving

By | Tuesday March 18, 2014 @ 1:44pm PDT
Mike Fleming

sony_logo__121101084843-200x133__130207090832__130530213852__131031103916The layoff picture at Sony Pictures is clearing, at least a little bit. The studio was required to file a Worker Adjustment And Retraining Nofication with the state, and it has formally declared that 216 will be the head count. … Read More »

Comments (8)

Layoffs Hit Sony Pictures As SPE Absorbs Technology Unit

By | Wednesday January 22, 2014 @ 6:50pm PST

Sony-Pictures-logo__130125035333-200x312-1__131113174714Changes continue at Sony Pictures amid the wake of the pre-Thanksgiving announcement that it plans to cut $250M in costs during the next few years as it shifts focus from movies to TV. Layoffs were announced today including Sony Pictures Technology President Chris Cookson, as his department is being absorbed into Sony Pictures Entertainment. A source familiar with the situation tells Deadline that the number of job cuts was “under 50″ and that they also affect Sony’s home entertainment unit and ani/VFX house Imageworks. “As part of the Company’s previously announced efforts to evolve its operations, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is absorbing the functions of Sony Pictures Technologies into various core businesses,” SPE spokesman Charles Sipkins said in a statement. “Regrettably, Chris Cookson will leave the Company as a result. In related moves, SPE has streamlined technology groups across its businesses to accelerate creative and technological innovation. The entire Company wishes to express its deep gratitude to Chris, his team, and the other groups involved in these changes.”

Sony CEO: Entertainment Is “Crucial” To Company
Sony Hires Consultant To Find $100M In Showbiz Cost Cuts
Read More »

Comments (14)

Paramount Layoff: 110 Is The Body Count

By | Tuesday October 1, 2013 @ 12:28pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Paramount has trimmed its staff by 110, with a memo issued just now on the lot. The layoffs happened this morning, and the casualties have been informed. This was not unexpected. Viacom CEO Phillipe Dauman gave a speech at Read More »

Comments 73

Layoffs Hit Warner Bros’ Home Vid Unit

EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros Home Entertainment has laid off several employees working in the DVD division of the business, Deadline has learned. We’re told that the cuts involved backroom functions related to the DVD supply chain; the disc business has … Read More »

Comments (6)

‘PBS NewsHour’ Closing Two Bureaus, Laying Off Staffers

By | Tuesday June 11, 2013 @ 5:53pm PDT

PBS NewsHour layoffsThis just in: Layoffs are about to hit one of public broadcasting’s signature shows. The New York Times reports that PBS NewsHour, the nightly newscast launched in 1975, is closing its San Francisco and … Read More »

Comments (8)

Film Guarantor IFG To Shut Down This Summer

By | Friday May 10, 2013 @ 8:18pm PDT

The final curtain is about to fall on one of the industry’s top bond guaranty companies. International Film Guarantors has been gutted by its parent company’s decision to switch its allegiance to IFG’s main rival, Film Finances Inc.; Fireman’s Fund instead will insure that firm’s film-completion guarantees starting in early summer. That leaves IFG out in the cold, and the Santa Monica-based company that has bonded hundreds of films over more than two decades soon will be shuttered. Deadline hears that IFG will continue to take new bonding business through July 1, when the Fireman’s-Film Finances deal is expected to close, but will wind down from there. All bonds issued by IFG through that date will continue to be backed by Fireman’s Fund. We hear that there have been no immediate layoffs at IFG but that all staffers including top management will be exiting – some leaving by July and others staying into the fall to work on projects already bonded by the company.

Read More »

Comments (5)

Inside The Summit And Lionsgate Merger: Layoffs Are The Order Of The Day

By | Wednesday February 29, 2012 @ 1:41pm PST
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: This is the week when the pain from the Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment merger gets felt, as the pieces are being mixed and matched, and layoffs rule the day. It sounds a lot like the plot of … Read More »

Comments (17)

CNN Lays Off 50 Staff: Blames Technology

By | Friday November 11, 2011 @ 10:00pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

First video killed the radio star, and now technology is killing editing and videographer jobs — at least at CNN. The cable news network today laid off 50 staffers in the Atlanta, New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, and Miami offices. … Read More »

Comments 39

D-Day For 200 Disney Layoffs In Distribution Even Though ‘Pirates Of Caribbean’ Passes $900M

By | Wednesday June 15, 2011 @ 10:03am PDT
Mike Fleming

It won’t be a good day on the Disney lot. Today, the studio will tell just under 200 staffers that they are being laid off. Deadline told you this was coming, as part of a restructuring effort, with most of those layoffs coming in theatrical and home video distribution. The … Read More »

Comments 38

Warner Bros Lays Off 50 In Home Entertainment & Consumer Products

Fox Lays Off 22 Staffers In Home Entertainment
Now Disney And Lionsgate Laying Off Staff
Job Cuts Read More »

Comments 28

Fox Lays Off 22 Staffers In Home Entertainment

By | Wednesday June 8, 2011 @ 5:32pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Just because the movies seem to be working this summer and the flood of deals at Cannes indicated that the appetite has returned to the acquisitions business, that doesn’t mean studios are immune to layoffs. Fox has become the fourth studio this week to lop staff. The studio has laid … Read More »

Comments (13)

EXCLUSIVE: The Film Department Shutters

By | Thursday May 5, 2011 @ 10:54am PDT

The Film Department Withdraws IPO

EXCLUSIVE: I began hearing rumors from sources yesterday that The Film Department had laid off its entire staff. Today, I can confirm that it’s a very sad day for that 3-year-old company that financed and produced the hit film Law-Abiding Citizen: it will close as of May 27th. Here’s what happened in summary to Chairman/CEO Mark Gill and Vice Chairman/COO Neil Sacker: Though the company was profitable in 2010 and generated $90 Million in revenues in the last 18 months, The Film Department was not allowed to keep it due to lender stipulations forced upon the company during the credit crisis. So all that money went to lenders. When the company had become profitable and improved its balance sheet by more than $105 million in the last year, it sought to raise $200 million in new private equity and debt to become a U.S. film distributor as well as a financier/producer. But it was unable to close its recapitalization in challenging capital markets.

“What if you made $90 million and your banks wouldn’t let you keep it? Basically, that’s what happened to us,” Mark Gill, Chairman and CEO of The Film Department, said in an exclusive statement to me. “We managed to hold on in this impossible position for 15 months, but we couldn’t survive indefinitely.”

“We came within inches of closing our recapitalization on three occasions, but unfortunately close isn’t good enough,” Neil Sacker, Vice Chairman and COO of the company, said in an exclusive statement to me. “We’re grateful to everyone—filmmakers, talent, financiers, industry experts and our staff—who contributed considerable time, effort, expertise and capital to the company.” Read More »

Comments 38

UPDATE: New Line Layoffs Start And End

By | Tuesday April 12, 2011 @ 6:45pm PDT

UPDATE 6:45 PM: Good news. I now am informed that these are the extent of the planned layoffs for New Line.

EXCLUSIVE 5:30 PM: There were 7 layoffs among the 40 employees at New Line in recent days: 2 creatives, 1 … Read More »

Comments 26