You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Dubbers’ strike could gag pix in Italy

Workload increases with more day-and-date openings

ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June.

Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in Italy are in the middle of a contract renewal dispute. They want a wage hike and are fighting what they call unreasonably short deadlines for delivering a dubbed pic.

“We want 20 days to work on a movie, not just five, as is the case now,” said a spokesman for the union — called AIDAC — which started the all-out strike on Friday.

The work pace has intensified for Italo dubbers with the increase of day-and-date openings due to piracy.

Crisis predicted

According to Buena Vista Italy topper Paul Zonderland, if deadlines for releases aren’t met, the situation could become critical. “These films are fundamental to turn this year into a positive one, after last year’s downturn,” he cautioned.

While in the short term Buena Vista’s activities in Italy will not be affected, Zonderland said he is already planning to put out the trailer for “Kill Bill Vol. 2” in English if it can’t be dubbed on time.

Italian dubbers went on strike last July, posing a threat to fall releases. But they backpedaled after being promised that their contract — which technically expired more than a year ago — would soon be renewed.

The country’s main dubbing studios, ALIED and Editori Associati, said the current strike made it impossible to enter into talks about the dubbers’ demands.

Non-union competish

The studios cited the economic climate and cutthroat competition from companies employing non-union dubbers as the main reasons for the crisis.

The national dubbers’ contract affects about 1,000 workers, including 700 actors. Dubbing in Italy generates an estimated $35 million in revenues, only about 25 % of which is generated by feature films. Most of the rest comes from TV dramas.

More Film

  • Bill Nighy

    Film News Roundup: Bill Nighy, Jack Lowden to Star in Comedy 'Made in Italy'

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • Busan: Director Kamila Andini on Balancing

    Busan: Director Kamila Andini on Balancing Motherhood and Filmmaking

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • VidAngel logo

    VidAngel Declares Bankruptcy to Put Copyright Fight on Hold

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • Morgan Freeman Colin Powell

    Morgan Freeman to Play Colin Powell in Biopic

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • Channing Tatum

    Channing Tatum Pulls Sexual Abuse Movie, Cutting Ties With Weinstein Company

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • DSCF3404.raf

    Los Angeles Feature Film Production Increases 7.6% in Third Quarter

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

  • Brigsby Bear and Kyle Mooney'Brigsby Bear'

    L.A. Film Festival Moving to September From June, Partnering With Arclight

    ROME — A strike by Italy’s dubbers could jeopardize the day-and-date releases of big Hollywood pics including “Troy” and “The Day After Tomorrow” in May, and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” in early June. Just as actors in the U.S. are holding contract talks, the thesps who give English-speaking actors a voice in […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content