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Marvel’s Poor Working Conditions Detailed By VFX Insider

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An anonymous VFX artist opens up about their experience working with Marvel, highlighting the poor working conditions perpetuated by the studio.

A VFX artist has describes the difficult working conditions Marvel has reportedly been perpetuating in recent productions of its films. Marvel is perhaps the most powerful force within the film industry, due to its huge box office grosses and an ever-expanding lineup of television shows on Disney+. This track record of success gives the studio an overwhelming influence over the direction of industry practices. With even more additions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe slate incoming, the demand from post-production houses has never been higher.

Recently, Marvel has come under intense scrutiny from fans over a decline in VFX quality. When images from She-Hulk: Attorney at Law were revealed, fans criticized her uncanny, computer-generated face and shoddy animations. Concerns began to grow among the fanbase that the studio is struggling to keep the level of quality in line with their theatrical releases. Marvel has also come under fire for its overreliance on green screens, leading to underdeveloped settings where characters appear pasted into the scene. Thor: Love and Thunder director Taika Waititi appeared in a Vanity Fair video where he mocked the inconsistency in his film’s CGI work.

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Now, an anonymous VFX artist has spoken with Vulture about their experience with Marvel’s industry practices. The artist describes the tenuous relationship between the VFX houses and Marvel Studios, stating that there is an incentive to keep the studio happy at any cost. If an effects house underdelivers or denies a request, there is a serious threat of missing out on job opportunities going forward. When competing for Marvel jobs, effects houses are also far more likely to underbid, leading to staffing shortages. The artist claims that a typical VFX job requires a team of ten workers – with Marvel films, that same workload is handled by just two artists. As a result, understaffed and overworked artists must meet the continuous demands of the studio, often right up until a film’s release.


Maybe a month or two before a movie comes out, Marvel will have us change the entire third act. It has really tight turnaround times. So yeah, it’s just not a great situation all around.

Some of the problems I mentioned are universal to every show and every project. But you end up doing less overtime on other shows. You end up being able to push back more on the directors. When they say something like, ‘Hey, I want this,’ you can be like, ‘This doesn’t make sense.’ Not every client has the bullying power of Marvel.

Marvel has become infamous in the VFX industry for its numerous edits and sweeping last-minute changes. Often directors have little experience with VFX and will struggle with visual work-in-progress shots which leads to major edits right down to the wire. This pushes an already overworked team of artists to the breaking point: the anonymous source describes numerous instances of coworkers crying or having anxiety attacks. The artist also acknowledges that most of the time they are not working with a director of photography and must develop their own shots for a film’s action sequences. This results in an inconsistent visual style compared to the rest of the film and battle scenes that are not grounded in a real space.


This VFX artist’s account is just one in a series of allegations of the poor working conditions perpetuated by Marvel. There is a growing movement of VFX workers looking to unionize in order to improve the quality and pace of their workloads. The goal of the movement is to give artists more of a say in the bidding process and prevent effects houses from underbidding without considering the impact it would have on them. Workers also want to be able to push back on directors without fear of retaliation from the studio. This conflict will likely continue as Marvel announces plans for the next two phases in the cinematic universe.


Source: Vulture

  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever/Black Panther 2 (2022)Release date: Nov 11, 2022
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023)Release date: Feb 17, 2023
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023)Release date: May 05, 2023
  • The Marvels/Captain Marvel 2 (2023)Release date: Jul 28, 2023




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Oscars 2023 Will Include All 23 Categories Presented Live on Air (EXCLUSIVE)

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All 23 categories will be aired during the Oscars 2023 telecast.

Bill Kramer, CEO of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, announced the news exclusively to Variety Tuesday morning. “I can confirm that all categories will be included in the live telecast,” he said.

The news comes after eight different Oscar categories — original score, makeup and hairstyling, documentary short, film editing, production design, animated short, live action short and sound — were cut from the main telecast at the 2022 Academy Awards, leading to much outrage across the film industry.

“We are committed to having a show that celebrates the artisans, the arts and sciences and the collaborative nature of moviemaking. This is very much what the mission of the Academy is, and I am very hopeful that we can do a show that celebrates all components of moviemaking in an entertaining and engaging way,” Kramer said.

Since his appointment in June, Kramer said he’s had many conversations about restoring the missing categories: “We are thrilled to be in a position to execute that.”

Jimmy Kimmel will return for the third time to host the Oscars. Kramer said he was excited to have the late-night host back. “I love having someone hosting the show who knows live television. I think that’s so critical,” he said.

When asked about what else audiences can expect from the telecast, Kramer said, “All I will say right now is that our anniversary, the 95th Oscars, is extremely important to us. I think it sets a really interesting rhythm for our 100th. You see this in the museum, I think we are able to celebrate our legacy while bringing the Academy into the future and the show will reflect that.”

Executive producers and showrunners Glenn Weiss and Ricky Kirshner of White Cherry Entertainment will produce the Oscars, and Weiss returns, for the eighth consecutive year, as the show’s director. The 95th Academy Awards will take place on March 12, 2023, live from the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood. The ceremony will be televised live on ABC and in more than 200 territories worldwide



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Black Panther 2 Writer Addresses T’Challa CGI Recreation Possibility

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Co-writer Joe Robert Cole addresses whether there was ever a possibility of a CGI recreation of T’Challa featuring in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.


Black Panther: Wakanda Forever co-writer Joe Robert Cole addresses whether the film was ever going to feature a CGI recreation of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa. After the huge success of 2018’s Black Panther, director Ryan Coogler returned to helm the sequel, which chronicles the fallout from King T’Challa’s death and the emergence of a new global threat. The film has earned generally positive reviews from audiences and critics alike, with particular praise levied at Angela Bassett and Letitia Wright’s performances in addition to the film’s thoughtful handling of Boseman’s tragic passing. The MCU actor passed away in 2020 after a battle with cancer, with Coogler and Marvel opting not to recast the character for the sequel.

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Since it was confirmed that Marvel was not going to recast T’Challa in the Black Panther sequel, some fans wondered if the character would be brought back in some form using CGI. In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, however, co-writer Cole reveals that digitally recreating T’Challa for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was never even a possibility that was discussed behind the scenes. Check out Cole’s full comment below:

I don’t remember any conversations about that. No. I don’t think we were ever… I don’t think anyone felt that would be appropriate.


Why It’s Good Wakanda Forever Didn’t Bring T’Challa Back With CGI

A character in a white ceremonial costume carries the iconic Black Panther mask.

There’s a long history of late actors being brought back digitally for movies, including Oliver Reed in Gladiator, Paul Walker in Furious 7, and Harold Ramis in Ghostbusters: Afterlife. All of these actor recreations are handled in different ways under different circumstances, but in the Black Panther sequel, T’Challa’s death is woven into the very fabric of the movie. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever‘s story was substantially reworked after Boseman’s death and was essentially built and marketed around the premise that it would honor his legacy by honoring T’Challa’s within the world of the MCU. With T’Challa gone, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever focuses instead on how Shuri (Wright) and Ramonda (Bassett) process their grief.

If Black Panther: Wakanda Forever had brought T’Challa back through the use of CGI, it could have undermined the power of Shuri’s character arc as she takes up the mantle of Black Panther. The most logical place to feature a digital T’Challa would be when Shuri visits the Ancestral Plane upon ingesting the heart-shaped herb. The film instead features Shuri encountering Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger, which speaks to the anger she feels and her lust for revenge. Shuri’s climactic moment as Black Panther in the film’s finale is choosing not to channel her grief into anger and revenge, but to seek peace with Namor (Tenoch Huerta) and fully embrace her feelings at the loss of her brother.

While bringing T’Challa back using CGI would have likely resulted in a brief moment of catharsis for audiences, a digital cameo may have taken away from Shuri’s arc, which honors Boseman and his character in more satisfying, long-lasting ways. By not recreating him digitally, the film also solidifies that he is truly gone, giving the character a true sense of finality. The sequel may not bring Boseman’s character back with CGI, but Black Panther: Wakanda Forever does introduce T’Challa’s son, Toussaint, which will hopefully allow the actor and the character to live on in a more uplifting and emotionally resonant way.

Source: Rolling Stone

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‘Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights’ Choreographer Testifies She Doesn’t Remember Dancer Alleging Harvey Weinstein Sexual Assault

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Harvey Weinstein’s defense called on a choreographer from the 2004 film “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” to answer questions about a dancer from the movie, who is a witness testifying in the L.A. trial. The dancer has alleged that she was sexually assaulted by Weinstein during production on the musical film, which his company Miramax produced.

Choreographer JoAnn Jansen was subpoenaed by Weinstein’s defense team to take the stand on Monday afternoon. She was the main choreographer on the 2004 film, which was a reimagining of the original hit “Dirty Dancing,” and has worked on a total of four films for Weinstein.

Jansen said she has no recollection of ever meeting Ashley Matthau, who is an uncharged witness in the trial. Matthau had booked a small role as a dancer on the “Dirty Dancing” sequel. During her testimony, she alleged she was assaulted in 2003 when Weinstein masturbated on her in his hotel room in Puerto Rico. Matthau, who was 22-years-old at the time, said that Weinstein wanted to discuss “future projects” with her. She agreed to go to the hotel because his assistant was with him and assumed it would be a business meeting. When they got to his room, his assistant abandoned her.

Matthau told jurors that she confided in a choreographer and producer on set, but said that neither of them had offered any assistance. Matthau did not specify the name of that choreographer during her testimony, so it’s unclear if she was referring to Jansen or somebody else.

During Jansen’s testimony on Monday, she shared she had no awareness of Matthau working on the film whatsoever. The choreographer said there were 50-75 dancers hired and claimed to know all of them. When shown a photo of Matthau, she did not recognize her.

Jansen also told the defense that no women ever made any complaints about Weinstein during the production.

“Did any female dancer meet you to express any concern?” Weinstein’s attorney, Mark Werksman, asked. Jansen replied, “No.” She said she would have remembered if such a concern was reported to her.

Werksman also asked if any of the dancers on set were in “distress” about any meetings with Weinstein, and Jansen said, “No.”

When cross-examined by the prosecutor, deputy D.A. Marlene Martinez, Jansen said she would recognize every single dancer with whom she worked. “I know that sounds odd, but I did.”

The prosecutor then showed Jansen IMDb pages from “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” and Jansen said she recognized every person in the cast, aside from Matthau. “She was credited with being a dancer, but you don’t recognize her?” Jansen responded, “Nope.”

The prosecutor then proceeded to ask about another dancer on the film: Claudia Salinas, a model and influencer who testified earlier in the trial after being accused of helping Weinstein trap a woman in his hotel bathroom where she was allegedly assaulted. Salinas disputed any involvement in the alleged incident and denied any wrongdoing, but her name has emerged a handful of times during the trial as an alleged accomplice to Weinstein.

When asked about Salinas, Jansen immediately recognized the name. When questioned about Salinas’ relationship with Weinstein, Jansen appeared to be uneasy and replied, “I don’t know,” to the prosecutor. Jansen said she didn’t work with her and, with a laugh said, “I don’t know why, but I do know her.”

Jansen noted that Salinas was a “dance extra” and said she did not hire her. When Martinez asked if she interacted with any of the dance extras, Jansen said, “No, I’m not allowed to,” citing SAG rules that state she is only able to interact with principal dancers. Martinez then asked, “Would you know all the dance extras?” and Jansen said, “No.” Martinez suggested that Matthau might have been a dance extra.

Jansen — whose choreography credits include “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,” “Uptown Girls,” “Shall We Dance” and two upcoming “Avatar” sequels — was the fourth witness called by the defense. Weinstein’s attorneys intend to call two more witnesses before resting their case this week.

Matthau’s attorney responded to Variety‘s request for comment on Monday evening, in response to Jansen’s testimony.

“A quick check of the credits for ‘Havana Nights’ reflects Ashley as a dancer in the movie, and she still receives residual checks to this day,” said attorney Elizabeth Fagen of the firm Fagen Scott, in an email to Variety. “If the defense argues she wasn’t there, they will be lying to the court and the jury.”

Closing arguments in Weinstein’s trial are expected to occur this week. The judge indicated that the case will likely be in the jury’s hands by end of the week.



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