About 120,000 film industry workers have lost their jobs in Hollywood as a result of Covid 19
The film and TV industry around the globe has experienced an almost total stop of activity, with thousands of largely freelance crew laid off at short notice with little or no financial recompense. Hundreds of productions from studio shoots such as the Avatar sequels and Fantastic Beasts 3 to independantproductions have been halted.
In the UK, the situation for “below the line” crew appears equally catastrophic. The Broadcasting, Entertainment, Communications and Theatre Union) estimates almost 50,000 industry freelancers will have lost their jobs as a result of the virus. The union’s head, Philippa Childs, commented: “almost all film and TV production has ground to a halt in the UK … The country’s world-class film and TV sector is at risk of a whole generation of talent being financially ruined by this crisis.”
Directors UK, the trade guild representing British screen directors, sent a letter to chancellor Rishi Sunak calling for further measures to support freelance and self-employed film industry employees. Directors UK CEO Andrew Chowns wrote: “There is now a critical need for similar support measures to be introduced for self-employed workers who are anxious, not just about losing their current work, but at the thought of facing months without income as productions are suspended longer term and, for some smaller productions, indefinitely.”