Read the full article on Film Music Magazine here:
450 composers, including many ‘A-listers’, met in Burbank, CA on Monday, Nov. 16th.
In the US, composers are one of the few professional groups working in film/tv that have no representation, in the way that actors have SAG and writers the WGA. There is a really important and interesting (and HEATED!) discussion going on about composers unionizing and using their collective power to stop the devaluation of music, and “increasingly unrealistic delivery deadlines, punitive working conditions, lack of benefits enjoyed by most workers in the industry, plus the amalgamation of skill-sets”.
Check out these stats from the same article:
“…a staggering drop in composer fees from the 1980s to the present time—as much as an 86% pay-cut on an average movie adjusted for 2009 dollars. Further statistics purport a 240% increase in actual minutes of music used in today’s movies in contrast to those produced in 1980.”
It will be very interesting to see where this leads – it’s a divisive and emotional topic, there are as many questions as there are answers, and a lot is at stake.
UPDATE: Here is a very interesting article from the LA Times that adds some more dimension to the debate. Consider this – David Carbonara is the composer for the incredibly successful ABC Show, Mad Men. You’d think, of all working composers, he’d be doing pretty well, but “even after he labors on 13 episodes for a full year, he says he won’t earn enough to support his family.”
There’s something very wrong with this picture!