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DreamWorks Animation Production Workers Unionize Under IATSE Locals 700 & 839

DreamWorks Animation Production Workers Unionize Under IATSE Locals 700 & 839

Dreamworks animation production workers have officially unionized.

In total, 160 workers from DreamWorks Animation (DWA) Television and Feature productions will be represented across the The Animation Guild (IATSE Local 839) and the Motion Picture Editors Guild (IATSE Local 700) following a National Labor Relations Board election last week.

According to the guild, this marks the largest unit to date with a seat on the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers to join the union. The Animation Guild now represents more than 70% of production workers across AMPTP signatories.

Artists, technicians and editors from the DreamWorks Animation studio were already represented under the Animation Guild through the Collective Bargaining and Post-Production Majors agreements. This is the first time that production workers are receiving representation.

“DreamWorks and The Animation Guild have had a relationship since the studio started. In those first days, DreamWorks was interested in offering the same working conditions as the other studios in order to attract the best talent possible. Today, we extend that coverage to ensure the production staff can enjoy the best working conditions we can negotiate with the company,” Steve Kaplan, the Animation Guild’s business representative, said in a statement.

The DreamWorks production workers’ unionization comes in the middle of IATSE negotiations with the AMPTP on its latest collective bargaining agreement.

So far, seven of the 13 west coast studio locals have reached tentative agreements on local-specific issues. The Editors Guild is still in the middle of ongoing talks, while the Animation Guild has yet to begin its own.

Talks are expected to resume on April 15 after a week of caucusing. IATSE is hoping to wrap local-specific talks by the end of the month, as it plans to begin general negotiations on April 29.  Those talks will include issues that impact all members including wage increases, pension and health contributions, artificial intelligence, job security and residuals.

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