Not Again! ‘Tuca & Bertie’ Apparently Latest Victim of Warner Bros. Discovery Merger
Tuca & Bertie’s creator, cartoonist Lisa Hanawalt, has announced on Twitter that the show has been canceled, again, after three seasons.
First airing on Netflix, the series was canceled the first season, after being an excellent chaser to BoJack Horseman and being one of the few adult sex comedies structured around women. It was eventually picked up by Adult Swim and ran for two more seasons.
In her announcement, Hanawalt thanks fans and Adult Swim for allowing their creative freedom while working on the project. Despite everything, she still has an ending in mind for the finale of the series. She also complements her fellow cast and crew for their work.
“I’m so proud of the work done by all my talented coworkers and collaborators on this show. Please watch the end credits and take note of all these names in the cast and crew. I’m also very glad we were able to be covered by The Animation Guild and the Writers Guild of America. I hope any show creators who have the leverage to fight for unionizing their productions will continue to do so.
I still have a beautiful and weird ending to T&B in mind, hopefully someday we’ll get the chance to finish this story. In the meantime, I’m not done creating. I’ve witnessed so many people connecting with this show on a profound level, and I intend to keep telling stories like this, no matter what.”
This was already sad news because T&B is one of the really great shows that address sexual trauma, recovery, and the difficulties in dating while also trying to self actualize and change paths. The third season was especially a mixture of heartbreak and beautiful friendship. Plus, the viewership was solid and even went up as the third season continued.
Things got even more bleak when Adam Conover connected this recent cancellation with the WB merger.
In his tweet he states that, “After the merger, Zaslav announced $3 BILLION in budget cuts. Long-time execs who fought for shows like Tuca were laid off. As a result, WBD has cancelled 38 animated shows.” He then cites Gita Jackson’s IGN article about the state of the animation department at the studio, which included Matt Burnett, co-creator of Craig of the Creek, sharing that workers from Craig and the upcoming spinoff Jessica’s Little Big World would be laid off—despite Craig being a very successful series.
Creators who work in animation are already being underpaid, and the way in which studios are treating animation and VFX it seems dire.
Chad Quandt, who has been a writer, showrunner and producer in animation for a decade, told IGN that going by the rates listed by the Animation Guild and the Writer’s Guild, freelance animation writers are paid 20-30% less than workers in live action.
“Last year The Animation Guild negotiated for better rates for all production members and it still isn’t close to parity with others doing the same job,” Quandt said. “I may write an award-winning serialized 22-minute script but I’ll be paid less than half of what another writer does for the same work if theirs is live-action. That’s the only difference.”(via IGN)
For those of us who love animated series and want variety and creative talent to flourish, we should keep aware of what studios have decided is expendable and what isn’t.
(via Deadline, featured image: Adult Swim)
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