TV and film jobs may never fully recover post-pandemic, strikes, says Teamsters president

 Tommy O’Donnell, president of Theatrical Teamsters Local 817, and other panelists at the MediaMKRS summit highlighted the challenging landscape for jobseekers interested in breaking into the film and television industry.

- There has been an unprecedented quantity of content in the past decade, but the panelists agreed that there will be a decrease in new content going forward.

- This decrease is expected to result in fewer job opportunities, both in the short and long term.

### Employment Trends

- The Writers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists went on strike in 2023, leading to a significant drop in employment in the entertainment industry in the Greater Los Angeles area.

- Television production in the Los Angeles area was down by 16.2% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2024.

### Forecasts and Projections

- U.S. film studios are anticipated to experience a 14% year-over-year decline in content investment in 2024 due to the impact of the 2023 strikes and the evolving film market post-pandemic.

- Ampere Analysis predicts that studios and streamers will produce more content in the fall of 2024 and in 2025. However, there is an expectation of slightly fewer job opportunities in the industry in the long run.

### Industry Evolution

- O’Donnell suggests that there will be a shift towards more limited series or episodic television series with fewer episodes, as opposed to the traditional 22-episode sitcom season.

- The average number of episodes per season for scripted shows in 2023 was 10.2 for network television and 9.6 for streaming shows.

### International Scope

- Many studios are increasing production abroad rather than in the U.S., contributing to the changing dynamics of the industry.

### Encouragement for Aspiring Professionals

- O’Donnell acknowledges the need to replace individuals who have left the industry, indicating a potential demand for new talent. Despite the challenges, there may still be opportunities for young people keen to join the industry.

Overall, the industry's evolving nature and various factors influencing content production and employment trends present challenges for jobseekers seeking to enter the film and television industry.  

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