DreamWorks Animation Cuts 33 Jobs Amid NBCUniversal’s Cost Reductions

Puss In Boots: The Last Wish

Dreamworks Animation has downsized its workforce by 33 employees, approximately 2% of its total staff, in response to broader cost-cutting measures initiated by parent company NBCUniversal. Despite the studio’s recent triumphs with hits like Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and The Bad Guys, the layoffs took place in late April. Dreamworks, seemingly flourishing with upcoming releases like Ruby Gillman: Teenage Kraken, Trolls Band Together, and exciting announcements at Cinemacon about a new Kung Fu Panda feature, along with persistent rumors of a new Shrek installment, remains a powerhouse in the animation industry.

A statement from Dreamworks clarified that the staff reductions were part of a larger cost-cutting strategy, primarily affecting support roles. The majority of those impacted, as reported by Business Insider, worked in tech roles, including production artists, technical directors, and lighters/compositors. Sources indicate that affected employees were informed of the impending layoffs several weeks in advance and were assured that the decisions were unrelated to their job performance.

Review: Puss in Boots- The Last Wish | RNZ

The report also disclosed that Dreamworks TV implemented two unannounced staff reductions, ranging between five and ten positions, late last fall. NBCUniversal’s cost-cutting measures have spanned various divisions, affecting E! Entertainment, NBC Sports, and the ad sales team.

While NBCUniversal’s motivation for cost reduction is apparent, particularly given the current trend of major media companies streamlining expenses, the animation sector, represented by Dreamworks Animation, continues to be a consistent revenue generator. Universal Pictures achieved the top three animated box office releases in 2022, with The Bad Guys, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, and Minions: The Rise of Gru. Additionally, Dreamworks maintains a strong partnership with Netflix, featuring numerous original series. Despite the layoffs, it appears that further investment in animation could contribute to the company’s ongoing success in the industry.

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