EXCLUSIVE UPDATED WITH MORE NAMES: Just under two months after the Walt Disney Company officially took control of the majority of Fox’s film and TV assets in a seismic $71.3 billion deal, another round of lay-offs are slicing through Burbank and over on Pico Boulevard.
A Disney spokesperson has confirmed to Deadline that people are being pink-slipped but gave no further details.
However, sources inform us that the cuts are wide-spread across Walt Disney Studios. At the same time we also hear that the latest round of cuts look to be more extensive that the previous layoffs that have occurred since Disney formally acquired the Fox assets on March 19.
As individuals are being informed today, most of the actual exits look to be timed for early June. While particular employees of the now melded companies may be losing their jobs, no single department is being wiped out, it seems.
Sources say that among those seeing cuts are top executives in Fox’s domestic film distribution division — in a deeper way than when the unit’s president Chris Aronson was among those laid off in March in the first round of significant post-merger cuts. Deadline hears that New York-based Bill Lewis and Linda Ditrinco, who had taken over the division after Aronson’s departure, are out as Disney continues to assume oversight of the unit. We also hear that Disney is offering full-time positions to five domestic distribution employees in the New York office and three in Calabasas.
Lewis and Ditrinco had been reporting to Disney SVP and General Sales Manager of North America Ken Caldwell, who in turn report to Disney’s President of Distribution and Franchise Management Cathleen Taff. The Fox team is expected to wrap its duties with the release of 20th Century Fox’s X-Men tentpole Dark Phoenix on June 7 with bookers and regional managers already finished with their duties on the flick. As it stands right now, the cleaving at Fox’s international distribution unit won’t be as harsh as what’s hitting the domestic team.