Alcon Entertainment LLC, an American film production and finance company, recently announced layoffs to recover from its losses and to streamline and consolidate its operations. The news came after the company was hit with significant losses due to the underperformance of Blade Runner 2049 at the box office. Though the exact number of Alcon Entertainment layoffs has not been revealed, certain sources say that the number is expected to be less than 10.
Alcon co-founders and co-CEOs Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove said in a statement, “We look forward to Alcon’s third decade of supporting artists in the creation of content not only for the theatrical marketplace, but also for the linear, and the quickly emerging digital platforms.” They added, “Ultimately, we are confident that the adjustments we are making will enable us to keep pace with our industry’s newest opportunities. By becoming nimbler, and continuing to work with great creative partners, Alcon will be well positioned for its next phase of growth.”
Alcon, in partnership with Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., produced Blade Runner 2049, the sequel to the highly influential 1982 film Blade Runner. Production is reported to have cost $155.0 million to produce of a total spending expenditure of $300.0 million. Its global box office collection totaled $259.2 million. A loss of around $80.0 million was initially estimated, though these losses were shared with Sony.
Alcon Entertainment’s Other Box Office Failure
After gaining weak returns from Blade Runner 2049, the losses for Alcon Entertainment continued due to poor box-office performance from its recent comedy, Father Figures. Released on December 22, the film cost around $25.0 million but earned just $14.0 million through Christmas Day and grossed only $22.7 million worldwide.
More recently, the company was involved in the production of the war drama 12 Strong. Still in theaters as of this writing, it cost about $36.0 million and has grossed around $48.0 million since its release on January 18.
Despite the Alcon Entertainment layoffs, Johnson and Kosove have expressed plans to expand the Blade Runner universe. Alcon has also acquired rights to the comic strip series Garfield and is planning for a new animated movie through its output deal with Time Warner Inc (NYSE:TWX).
“Although this new direction requires us to modestly decrease the size of our workforce here at Alcon, the few layoffs affected by this streamlined business model are not central to our reorganization plans,” the executives said. “Still, to those leaving our family, we will be forever grateful for their creative energies and effort.”
“Layoffs In Works At ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Producer Alcon Amid Streamlining,” Deadline, February 9, 2018.
“’Blade Runner 2049′ Producer Alcon Entertainment Hit by Layoffs,” The Hollywood Reporter, February 9, 2018.
“Holiday Box-Office Winners and Losers,” The Hollywood Reporter, December 31, 2017.