2024 Animation Industry Rayoff Tracker

2023 was a tough year for the animation industry, with a significant number of employees laid off at studios, streamers, and technology companies of all sizes. We expect the industry to turn around in 2024, but so far it has been a slow start to the year with scarce hiring at several media companies and a shakeout after the holidays. [We launched our Layoff Tracker last year to monitor key layoffs across the industry and give workers a big picture view of the employment situation in animation, VFX, and gaming. Because the industry is still so volatile, we plan to re-launch Layoff Tracker in 2024.

As with last year, only layoffs that can be reliably verified are listed, so the true scope of layoffs in the industry is broader than what is listed here. We appreciate our readers' help in ensuring the accuracy of this list, so if you have any hints (especially hints with supporting documentation), please let us know.

We also encourage those who are currently unemployed and looking for work to follow this spreadsheet, which is constantly updated with animation job postings.

January 25 - Microsoft: 3 months after deciding to acquire Activision Blizzard, Microsoft laid off 1,900 employees (8% of the division's workforce) from its Microsoft Gaming division.

January 25 - Apple TV+ According to Deadline, Apple TV+ laid off eight people across its kids music, production, and development teams. While small in number, the move is significant in that it represents a shift for the company to strengthen its own animated film pipeline after terminating its contract with Skydance Animation.

January 23 - Riot Games: game developer and Arcane producer Riot Games announced that it is laying off 530 employees, or 11% of its worldwide workforce. According to a company blog post, the layoffs are "critical to Riot's future" and the company plans to narrow its focus.

January 11 - Pixar: On the same day that the studio's latest film, "Elemental," was nominated for six Annie Awards, it was announced that Disney-owned Pixar will lay off a significant number of people in 2024.

January 8 - Unity: software developer Unity announced its fourth and largest layoff since July 2022, making 1,800 employees, or just over 25% of its worldwide workforce, redundant.