Disney Cuts Deeply Into Miramax

If there’s one common complaint about films of the past few years its that there’s too much product, and not enough quality. In 2008 there were more than twice as many movies in multiplexes than there were a decade before.

Thankfully the slowing economy has seen a drop-off in films with many studios opting to produce a smaller number of movies. Disney Pictures several years ago was one of the first studios to deliberately cut back on its slate.

Now Disney has officially announced a reduction by half in the number of films per year from its specialty division Miramax Films. Miramax will also now move part of its operations to Disney Studios in Burbank, mostly post-production elements such as marketing, distribution, operations and administrative support.

Creative, development, production and business and legal affairs will continue to run out of its offices in New York. However the previously 70-strong staff is expected to be reduced to a mere 20 or so people while plans for six to eight theatrical releases per year will be cut to a mere three says The New York Times.

At its height in the late 90’s under the Weinstein brothers, the company employed up to 500 staff. This year the company put out such films as “Adventureland,” “Extract,” “Cheri,” “The Boys Are Back” and “Everybody’s Fine”.

Upcoming films for the studio include Julie Taymor’s Shakespeare adaptation “The Tempest”, John Madden’s Sam Worthington-lead 60’s Mossad thriller “The Debt”, the Keira Knightley romance ensemble “Last Night”, Jennifer Aniston rom-com “The Baster”, and the Guillermo del Toro-produced horror remake “Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark”.