Disney's Maker Studios lays off around 80

Former PewDiePie outfit also slashing its YouTube partner program from 60,000 to just 300 large, family friendly creators

The upheaval around Disney's Maker Studios continues this week, as the Wall Street Journal reports that the multi-channel network is laying off about 80 people, and plans to downsize its YouTube partner program from more than 60,000 creators to just 300.

The paper cites a person close to the company with the information, and notes that these moves were in the works even before the recent scandal that prompted Maker to drop its best-known YouTube creator, Felix "PewDiePie" Kjellberg, for repeated anti-Semitic jokes.

In culling its massive roster of YouTube creators, Maker will prioritize two qualities. First, they will need to be established stars with large followings. Second, their material will need to be family friendly enough to match with the rest of Disney's corporate culture.

Disney acquired Maker Studios in 2014 for $500 million, with performance bonuses eventually hiking the price up to $675 million.

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Latest comments (2)

Craig Page El Presidente, Awesome EnterprisesA year ago
I know it's not my money, but it seems insane to me that they would spend $675 million buying Maker Studios, only to get rid of most of the creators 2 years later, including the biggest one.

WOW, Alfonso Sexto predicted this two years ago:

"What is the plan this time? Buy them, release 2-3 products in two years and then dissolve the studio leaving everyone jobless?
Just wondering you know... that has been Disney's procedure since 2011 after all... "
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Gary LaRochelle Digital Artist / UI/UX Designer / Game Designer, Flea Ranch GamesA year ago
Disney did the same thing with LucasArts. Buy and then close. You don't want to be working for a studio that gets bought buy Disney.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Gary LaRochelle on 26th February 2017 3:26pm

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