Movies - TV
Why So Many VFX Artists Are Fed Up With Marvel
By JEREMY MATHAI
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has been taken down a peg via a damning new report by Vulture's Chris Lee, regarding Marvel Studios' alleged treatment of overworked, underpaid VFX artists. The report follows weeks of rumors, informal anonymous allegations, and fan complaints about "bad" and "lazy" CGI in Marvel projects such as "Thor: Love and Thunder."
Lee reported on his conversation with an anonymous VFX artist who claims to have worked on several Marvel movies. "When I worked on one movie, it was almost six months of overtime every day," the artist revealed. "I was working seven days a week, averaging 64 hours a week on a good week. Marvel genuinely works you really hard."
The artist also told Lee about short-notice changes ordered by Marvel executives, and recalled VFX employees saying they were being "pixel-f****d," or nitpicked over every last pixel. Marvel films tend to rush into production while details are being fine-tuned, so "They'll want you to change an entire setting, an entire environment, pretty late in a movie."
The anonymous source described Marvel as vindictive towards those who fail to meet deadlines; one VFX house was "blacklisted" after failing to "bend over backward to keep Marvel happy." The artist adds that VFX vendors often "underbid," or offer lower prices for their work compared to other vendors, just for a chance to work with Marvel, causing issues with understaffing.
Vulture’s source also said, "The main problem is most of Marvel’s directors aren’t familiar with working with visual effects," referring to Marvel's tendency to hire inexperienced indie filmmakers who have a disconnect with VFX work. The artist strongly advocates for refinement of the filmmaking process and unionizing the VFX industry.