Talks between the Walt Disney Co. and Bob and Harvey Weinstein may have reached their close, but employees at the mini-major’s Gotham and Los Angeles offices are scratching their heads over a recent edict from the Mouse House.
An email from Disney human resources staffer Marjorie Randolph — with the subject line “authorization to work on Miramax company co-developed and co-financed projects” — informed Miramax and Dimension staffers that they’re now allowed to toil on films that Disney is co-financing, but that will be distribbed through the Weinsteins’ forthcoming entity.
“We want to make clear how much we support Bob and Harvey’s efforts to succeed with their new venture,” read the email. “Disney hereby authorizes you to work on these projects.”
The list of films that the Weinsteins will partner on with Disney include the Jennifer Aniston starrer “Derailed,” Stephen Frears‘ “Mrs. Henderson,” Anthony Minghella‘s “Breaking and Entering” and another chapter in the “Scary Movie” franchise.
The Weinsteins have another slate of pics that they wholly own.
The Disney memo was issued after employees were given legal waivers last week to be signed if they agreed to work on Weinstein Co. projects in addition to their regular Miramax and Dimension duties. That offer went over like a lead balloon with staffers, who have more than 20 pics to get out before the Weinsteins’ contract expires in September.
Many staffers at the mini-major are miffed they’ve been given what they see as orders to work on extra pics without extra pay or perks. “We’re being told that we do not have a choice,” snaps one.
The move, however, reflects just how cozy the Weinsteins and the Mouse House have gotten since their divorce papers were signed. It seems the two parties have not just settled amicably but extended their relationship significantly — especially since the the Mouse has a piece of the action.