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Marvel VFX Artists Take First Step Towards Unionization: Ensuring Fair Treatment and Representation in the Film Industry

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Mary McNally
Mary McNally is a UK-based author exploring the intersection of fashion, culture, and communication. With a talent for vivid storytelling, Mary's writing captures the complexities of modern life engagingly and authentically.

Marvel VFX Artists Take First Step Towards Unionization

A group of visual effects (VFX) artists working for Marvel, one of the leading companies in the film industry, has embarked on a journey towards creating a union for themselves. This move is significant because the field of VFX has been underrepresented within the industry.

According to the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), a large number of Marvel’s team of over 50 VFX artists have signed a petition to be represented by the union. It is noteworthy that the IATSE already represents approximately 168,000 theater, film, and television technicians and artisans in the United States and Canada.

Mark Patch, the organizer of visual effects at the IATSE, expressed his thoughts on this development. He stated that this is the first step of a big project that aims to ensure fair treatment and representation for VFX artists in the industry.

First Step of a Big Project

The initial petition only applies to the on-set team, which includes data controllers, production managers, cameramen, and assistants working on Marvel film and television productions. The next phase will involve extending the union representation to the “post-production” teams who work on computers.

This decision comes within the context of a broader social movement within the American audiovisual industry. Writers and actors have recently gone on strike, marking the first major strike since 1960. VFX artists have raised concerns about Marvel’s practices, alleging last-minute changes to their work orders, overworking and underpaying staff, and imposing excessive workloads.

Bella Huffman, a VFX Coordinator who supports the unionization efforts, highlighted the lack of time limits, protected hours, and pay equity within the VFX department. She emphasized the need for visual effects to become a sustainable and safe field.

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