The trimming of Disney’s labor force continues, as two of Marvel’s top employees have been let go by the House of Mouse.
According to a report from comic book news outlet Bleeding Cool, Disney has parted ways with both Marvel Comics publisher John Nee and Marvel Entertainment producer Judith ‘Judy’ Stephens.
In addition to Nee and Stephens, Bleeding Cool also noted that “a handful of staffers at Marvel Comics [have] been made officially redundant at various departments and levels – though none in comic book editorial.”
A veteran of the ‘nerd culture’ scene, Nee previously served as the President of Wildstorm prior to its sale to DC and subsequently Senior VP of Business Development at DC, until he departed the company in 2010 to found board game and trading card publisher Cryptozoic, where he was able to acquire the licensing rights to such popular series as Adventure Time, Ghostbusters, The Walking Dead, and Rick and Morty.
First joining Marvel in 2018, Nee’s tenure as Publisher saw him acquiring the League of Legends, Warhammer, and Ultraman licenses and receiving an Inkspot Award in 2019 for his contributions to the ‘nerd’ industry.
During her tenure at Marvel, Stephens worked primarily in the company’s entertainment division, serving as producer and host of various offerings including such series as Marvel Becoming, Marvel Make Me a Hero, This Week in Marvel, and the Women of Marvel podcast.
Unlike Nee, Stephens publicly announced her departure from Marvel, taking to her Twitter account to inform her followers that “Marvel and I said goodbye today.
She also and noted that she was “working through my emotions as I mourn my career over the last 14 years.”
Amidst fears that these high-profile departures could signal an even more widespread set of layoffs, particularly in the wake of Disney’s September cut of 28,000 employees, Bleeding Cool stated they had been told that these specific cuts were not the beginning of a “drip drip.”
However, this second-hand assurance did little to assuage concerns, as the same-day Disney simultaneously announced that numerous divisions would be seeing cuts, including ESPN, Searchlight Pictures, the studio’s marketing arm, and their Broadway-based theatrical stage team.
While exact numbers have not been reported for all of Disney’s affected branches, Deadline reports that ESPN will see the loss of several hundred employees and Searchlight Pictures will see the dismissal of six of their team members.
What do you make of these layoffs? Do you believe this is an isolated incident, or does it point to a larger wave of job losses? Let us know on social media or in the comments down below!