In a recent move made by the newly formed, Warner Bros. Discovery, ‘WBD,” has laid off 82 scripted, unscripted, and animation employees and announced that it will not fill 43 more vacant positions. The 125 positions accounted for 26% of the company’s workforce in those units.
In an announcement by Chairman Channing Dungey in a company-wide memo, the company intends to fully consolidate its animation division, combining Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network Studios, meaning that Cartoon Network Studios is soon to be no more.
Discovery merged with Warner Bros in March of 2022 and quickly began implementing changes. Following massive cancellations, the newly-formed company quickly aimed to cut costs across the board. This led to the removal of programming like Bargirl, as well as of catalogs of animated content from the Warner Bros Discovery-owned, HBO MAX. Discovery is notorious for its mis-treatment of animated projects, even attempting to sell Discovery Kids to Cartoon Network, to then ultimately deciding to shut it down, after the deal had fell through.
“I enjoyed my time when I was there, recently, I know things have changed and I will always be grateful for Cartoon Network and patiently wait to see the direction that Discovery goes in,” said Mark McCray, former head of programming for Cartoon Network and Adult Swim.
With these big changes in the animation landscape, what does this mean for Georgia, a star in the animation landscape? Currently, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work has been normalized in the animation industry. But this does mean that hundreds of people relying on new animation work will surely miss out this year.