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VFX artists urge studios to let them work remotely

9,000 sign petition to Motion Picture Association

The Visual Effects Society (VES) has urged employers to allow VFX workers to work remotely during the coronavirus crisis, while the community has sent a petition to this effect to the Motion Picture Association (MPA).

“Right now is the time for the utmost flexibility towards VFX artists and all practitioners as we try to figure our way through this crisis,” the VES said in a statement. “Many companies are trying to take action, and we are optimistic that studios and vendors can find and enact workable solutions.”

Meanwhile a petition was sent to MPA chairman and CEO Charles H. Rivkin by Vancouver-based VFX artist Mario Rokicki and 9,000 signatories. “NDAs (Non-Disclosure Agreements) pushed on VFX studios don’t allow artists, production, tech and support staff to work from home,” the petition said. “With often overcrowded facilities and artists that sit elbow to elbow pushing long hour days with overtime puts not only me but also my loved ones at risk of catching the virus.”

“All I ask is to put aside often legal misguided IP protection measures and harsh NDAs and allow tens of thousands of dedicated artists to work from home and prevent total VFX studios shutdown and layoffs,” it continued. “We want to make the best of the tough times and towards creating the great work that we always delivered in the past.”