DNEG to pay enhanced overtime to UK employees

DNEG, the visual effects (VFX) and animation studio, will pay enhanced overtime to its London employees in what it called “a departure from industry norms in the U.K.”

October onwards DNEG will pay overtime at a rate of 1.5 times of regular pay to all U.K. staff in non-management positions “for all incremental time that they are asked to work beyond the standard 40-hour week,” the company said on Monday.

This move brings DNEG’s U.K. overtime policy in line with its studios in North America and applies across its film and episodic visual effects, DNEG Animation and ReDefine operations, including its artist, production, technology and support teams.

DNEG London GM Chris Burn said, “I’m immensely proud that DNEG is the first of the big visual effects studios to offer paid overtime to our teams in the U.K. As a global leader in the VFX and animation industries and the U.K.’s largest employer in the sector with approximately 700 staff in our London office, DNEG is constantly evaluating ways to recognise the dedication and loyalty of our teams.”

He added, “The last 18 months have been challenging for all of us, and I am delighted that we are now in a position to make this commitment to our U.K. employees as we move into a very busy period for the London studio. This is a fair decision for our employees and the right thing to do for the creative industries in the UK. Our team in London has a key long-term role in leading DNEG’s visual effects and animation work on feature films, such as The Matrix ResurrectionsRon’s Gone Wrong and upcoming DC movies The Flash and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom.”

Added DNEG Animation president Tom Jacomb, who is based in London: “DNEG is challenging U.K. industry norms and conventions by providing overtime for any extra hours that we ask our crews to work. Our supervisory and production teams do what they can to avoid the need for overtime, but sometimes it is an inevitable consequence of the work that we do and the deadlines we meet.”

Novator Capital Advisers recently agreed to invest $250 million in DNEG parent company Prime Focus which has helped DNEG chairman and CEO Namit Malhotra to better position the company.

Malhotra commented, “Since taking the reins as CEO of DNEG, my driving purpose has been to build a world-class, industry-leading organisation with a global network of integrated studios, and to institute best practices across all areas of our business, from visual effects, to animation, to new areas, such as IP and content creation, and gaming. This proactive initiative to offer enhanced overtime to our London artists and support teams brings the U.K. studio in line with our locations in North America. We’re not doing this because we have to. We’re doing this to ensure our London teams are compensated fairly for their work.”