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Oscars VFX Employees Rally Attracts Over 500 Demonstrators

March 5th, 2014
rally.jpgMore than 500 VFX workers gathered outside of the Academy Awards protesting Tax subsidies and job losses. They come together blocks off of the awards show’s red carpet, forming a sea of green at the corner of Hollywood and Vine Blvd. that started at 1 p.m. green shirts, green umbrellas, men in tight fitting green spandex.
The color was a sign to the green screens over which artists and technicians build the futurist globes and comic book action series that dominate Hollywood’s largest box office hits. They carried signs that read “Canada Stop Buying Our Jobs,” “Subsidies Create suffering Not Jobs” and “Respect USA VFX.”

2014 is the 2nd year that employees have rallied outside the academy awards ceremony. Last year’s protest happened weeks after Rhythm & Hues, a studio whose work on films like “Babe” and ‘The Golden Compass” earned awards and acclaim, yielded to financial pressure and filed for insolvency protection. The company went on to win an Oscar for its work last year for “Life of Pi.”

The Academy Awards event was organized by a group called The Association of Digital Artists, Professionals and Technicians (ADAPT), which formed this year to pressure the United States government to impose duties on movies that benefit from foreign tax subsidies. The hope is that levying attacks create a financial disincentive to ship jobs and work overseas.

Over the past decade, more than 40 states and a dozen nations provide some form of incentive and that is part of the reason that various high post production amenities have folded.

Demonstrators said that, the spread of incentives forces many artists to deracinate their lives and move to Vancouver, London, or whichever city is presently offering the most princely tax benefits.

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