New Line Lays Off 45015 Apr, 2008 By: Chris Tribbey
Less than two months after announcing that New Line Cinema would be folded into Warner Bros., Time Warner Inc. has started with expected layoffs.
The Hollywood Reporter reported April 15 that as many as 450 employees would lose their jobs, with up to 50 employees remaining with New Line as a label under Warner Bros. Another 40 employees would be offered jobs with Warner Bros., the magazine reported. The fate of New Line's home entertainment employees is still unknown.
Time Warner CEO and President Jeff Bewkes announced his plans for 41-year-old New Line in late February, saying that the studio had been unable to capitalize on foreign revenues for its films, instead mortgaging the rights overseas in order to produce new films.
“We wanted to keep the overseas' returns. You can name a number of films — 300, Golden Compass, etc. — you make a lot more money outside the country than inside. Why give that up?” Bewkes said at the Bear Stearns 21st Annual Media Conference in New York in March. “So we were going to cut the New Line slate. It is far more profitable to put that through one theatrical distribution system. We wanted Warner's.”