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Montréal, April 20, 2021 — Today, the Quebec Film and Television Council (QFTC) released the results of its annual statistical survey, performed by the independent firm KPMG, to measure trends in jobs, wages and diversity in the visual effects and animation industry. Not surprisingly, the results for 2020 show the visual effects sector to be significantly impacted, while animation studios continue to experience growth in Quebec.
Even though studios adapted very quickly to remote work, the halt in filming at the beginning of the pandemic put a stop to the exponential growth the visual effects sector had been experiencing for several years, forcing them to lay off up to 40% of their workforce. Unlike animation, the visual effects sector depends on real-life footage to get contracts.
However, these results are offset by a strong, quick economic recovery, with a return to full employment expected by June 2021 and a resumption of growth approaching 20% per year in 2022 and 2023, thus returning to the pre-pandemic trend.
Animation was able to experience continued growth thanks to an independent production chain requiring few face-to-face activities or none at all. Jobs increased by 22%, reaching a total of nearly 1,600 full-time equivalent jobs.
With respect to the diversity of profiles in the industry, the situation was stable for the representation of women across all positions (33.9%) in spite of the pandemic, even though they remain underrepresented in artistic jobs (28%), especially in management positions (12.8% only). In this regard, the QFTC is proud to continue to work at promoting women in artistic supervisory positions through its leadership and team management training program, thanks to the “Release Your Creativity” project.
2020 was also the first year that we measured the representation of trans and non-binary people in the industry. According to the responses provided, they represent 2% of all workers in the industry, and up to 6% in the animation sector.
As for people of immigrant backgrounds, they still represented nearly 40% of all workers in 2020, reconfirming how essential it is to attract and retain talents in a globalized industry.
Lastly, the median salary was $82,500 in 2020, and the median age in the industry remained stable, between the ages of 32 and 33.
“The QFTC and its members stepped up their efforts to get through this unprecedented crisis. Despite a significant impact on the labour force in 2020, we are pleased to see that the economic recovery will allow us to recall all workers for a full-employment recovery by June 2021! Of course, this will result in big recruitment challenges for the studios,” stated Pierre Moreau, CEO of the QFTC. “At the same time, it’s important to point out the continuing growth of Quebec’s animation sector. Together, these two sectors represent a promising industry, offering quality, well-paid jobs and promoting our talent domestically and internationally.”
A total of 185 projects were carried out by Quebec’s visual effects and animation studios in 2020 for domestic and foreign productions. As a reminder, the industry’s results totalled $390M for visual effects and $169M for animation.
About the QFTC
Founded in 2006, the QFTC is a non-profit organization that contributes to the development and competitiveness of Quebec as a world-class multi-screen production hub. As an economic development agency, its mission is to generate investments in Quebec by leveraging competitive tax incentive programs, the expertise of industry members, the province’s architectural diversity, the quality of its infrastructures and the industry’s ability to export its products to foreign markets.
The QFTC receives support from its partners: Air Canada, the National Bank of Canada, BFL Canada, Corporate Stays, Demers Beaulne, Difuze, EP Canada, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Hôtel Gault/Monville, Hybride, Miller Thomson, Grandé Studios, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton, Rodeo FX, Hôtel William Gray, Hôtel Mount Stephen, as well as from the different levels of government: federal, provincial and municipal.
For additional information, visit www.bctq.ca.
About the “Release Your Creativity” Project
Developed in collaboration with Access:VFX Montréal, CyberCap and the School of Digital Arts, Animation and Design at the University of Quebec at Chicoutimi — NAD-UQAC, the “Release Your Creativity” project aims to develop innovative, inclusive solutions to deal with the shortage of qualified labour. It receives support from the studios Caribara, DNEG, Framestore, Method Studios, Reel FX and Technicolor (including its three brands, Mikros, MPC and Mr. X). Over a period of 2 years, the project is being implemented via three components: a training program for women in leadership and team management, a mentoring program for young graduates and the organization of activities aimed at inclusion, diversity and well-being in the workplace.