Yesterday (April 23) marked the latest in a string of protests staged by the American Federation of Musicians against Marvel Entertainment for outsourcing film music work overseas.
Musicians distributed informational leaflets to employees and passers-by outside the entrance of St. Vincent Medical Center at a 6 a.m. location shoot for “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” which the studio plans to score in Europe.
Later that afternoon, a group of more than 20 musicians demonstrated outside the El Capitan Theatre in advance of the following day's premiere of Marvel's “Iron Man 3,” scored in London. At the same time, AFM President Hair joined a few other musicians in New York for an informational leaflet outside Marvel Studios.
Recording musicians are upset that rather than employ local musicians, Marvel pockets money garnered by hefty U.S. tax credits and leaves American musicians out in the cold in favor of hiring foreign musicians to perform film scores on the cheap. All other personnel hired for the production — directors, producers, actors, grips and crew — are American and paid under union contracts.
According to Marc Sazer, president of the Recording Musicians Association, an advocate group for recording musicians within the AFM:
We don't think that's fair. 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' should be scored here at home — just like the acting, directing, writing, truck driving, catering, carpentering and everything else.
The musicians union has initiated repeated talks with Marvel, but the studio refuses to cover musicians under a union contract.
“This is about work, employment, tax fairness, and American jobs,” Sazer said.
For more information, visit http://promusic47.org/marvel.html.