Disney in Crisis: Pixar Plans to Lay Off 20% of its Employees

The job cuts are to be made during the course of the year

by Jonas Reichel on January 16, 2024

The new year is also starting very badly for the mega corporation. In order to achieve greater efficiency in the in-house streaming service Disney+, significant cuts are now to be made. According to reports, these cuts are now affecting the animation studio Pixar - 20% of its employees to be precise.

According to TechCrunch, the animation studio Pixar is facing a huge wave of layoffs. Although internal sources report that up to 20% of employees are to be dismissed, Pixar emphasizes that the exact number of those concerned is still being determined. The job cuts are expected to take place over the course of 2024, as the studio is currently focusing on producing less content. Employees who work for Disney+ but have not yet generated a profit for the streaming division are also said to be losing their jobs.

Disney+ recorded 7 million new subscribers in Q4 2023 - subscriptions with ads grew to 5.2 million. Nevertheless, Disney continues to pursue cost-cutting measures so that Disney+ will return to profitability by the fourth quarter of 2024.

Strategist Brandon Katz points out that Pixar's audience, which was used to experiencing high-quality content in theaters, still needs time to get used to the streaming service. The industry is also struggling with a growing fatigue towards sequels and franchise spin-offs. Pixar's box office results have been declining since the 2017 release of "Coco" and recent releases such as "Lightyear" and "Onward" have also fallen short of expectations.

The already announced sequels to "Inside Out" and "Elio" should help to keep the budget in check. Pixar already laid off 75 employees in early 2023 - a total of 7,000 more positions are to follow.

Disney+ is set to grow further through the integration of Hulu content in the United States. The success of these efforts is crucial as Disney tries to remain competitive in the highly contested streaming market.

So it seems as though the company will continue to face tough times ahead.