Blue Sky Studios

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Blue Sky Studios Reviews

Updated Jul 23, 2014

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3.2 24 reviews

78% Approve of the CEO

Blue Sky Studios President, Twentieth Century Fox Animation Brian Keane

Brian Keane

(9 ratings)

60% of employees recommend this company to a friend
24 Employee Reviews
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    • Culture & Values
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    1 person found this helpful  

    You're not a cog in a big wheel. You're part of an awesome creative family.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) White Plains, NY

    ProsThe people here are the main draw. Blue Sky has always had a chill and fun atmosphere when it comes to the people you're working with. I always felt that it was unique that way by far. I loved coming to work every day for this reason. It doesn't matter what department you work in, each one has it's own community vibe and it's easy to feel like you fit in the studio.

    The technology developed here is some of the best in the industry and is often immensely underrated. You're able to--- encouraged to make suggestions and give feedback on all aspects of the films and process whether they're your job/department or not. There's opportunity for lateral movement should you become more interested in other parts of the pipeline.

    Salary was pretty good. Bonus potential was good as well, especially with any of the Ice Age movies. Benefits were great.

    ConsBeing owned by Fox has its downsides. They have a knack for crapping on what were some pretty good stories, and turning them into fart jokes and tired lame executive (non)humor. The vibe at Blue Sky is one of an independent studio but there's a shadow cast by Fox that can linger at times. It's worse in some more quota-driven departments.

    Aside from Ice Age, Blue Sky hasn't really had a "big" hit. They've had some good films, but some have underperformed. Until they have a non-Ice Age success, they're always going to be (falsely) considered the younger sibling to Pixar (or Pixar U as they're known at Pixar). These lackluster box office showings don't create rewarding bonus opportunities

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou're never going to please everyone, but trust your employees. There's no need to have your hands in everything or partake in helicopter parenting

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Another day at the cartoon factory

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsYou work with very talented folks, albeit in the stranglehold of corporate bureaucracy.
    Overtime is a rarity, great for work life balance, less so if you were counting on that supplemental income.
    Lots of opportunities to explore other departments and areas of the pipeline, just don't expect it to help out your career.
    Job stability that borders on stagnation. You have to work pretty hard or screw up pretty bad to get fired from here.

    ConsActive effort on the part of management to suppress any innovation, advancement of the craft, and other hard to quantify budgetary "unknowns". If it's not faster/cheaper, or you can't prove it's faster/cheaper, or you can prove it but they don't get it, then don't bother. Leadership is basically a good-old boys/girls club. They systematically weed out anyone trying to push creative or technical boundaries and replace them with Company men/women that fall in line. Most people that stick around for the long term do it less out of genuine loyalty and feeling rewarded and more because they either have family in the area or have gotten used to a steady paycheck with pretty much minimal effort. Can't argue with a system that gives you steady employment and puts your kids through college, but every day feels like your selling yourself out just a little bit more.

    Advice to Senior ManagementReally nothing I can offer here. They run this company exactly according to their own beliefs and promote leadership in their own image. It results in a suffocating environment devoid of any real creative or technical innovations, but it cranks out moving pictures and keeps the whole machine in place and running. The company will not fail with this business model, and it retains talent, so it's hard to argue why it should be different.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Great place to work

    Senior Technical Director (Current Employee) Greenwich, CT

    Prosgreat people, challenging projects, lots of opportunities. this is the place to be if you want to be in animation. company cares about their employees and tries to give opportunities whenever possible. culture makes it easy to communicate with senior management.

    Conscan be tough to commute to. only animation studio on the east coast.

    Advice to Senior ManagementKeep investing in your people. don't always be concerned with the bottom line.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Good place to work as character animator.

    Animator (Current Employee) Greenwich, CT

    ProsThe studio is located in a beautiful natural spot. Overall environment at work is good. Animation Department is great: telented, creative, fun...

    ConsMovies are technically spectacular and beautifully animated, but direction, script and cinematohraphy are low quality. Poor HR dept.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInvest more in script, direction and HR.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Great Place To Work!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsVery collaborative, creative and technical environment! I enjoy coming to work each day to tackle new challenges.

    ConsMost people have at least a 45 minute commute to come into work (myself included).

    Advice to Senior ManagementKeep up the great work!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Great place to work

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsBlue Sky is a great, fun, stable place to work. Everyone's easy to work with, extremely talented, and compensation and benefits are in a comfortable range for Staff. For contractors, depending on the position, they are sometimes able to offer housing for the duration of your contract employment, which is quite generous.

    ConsMost days feel like a giant startup where no departments are talking to each other, working in highly proprietary pipeline that takes at least a few months to wrap your head around (if your role involves that sort of knowledge). Many departments also lack solid documentation, if it exists at all making the initial learning curve potentially steep. These are things you find in most post houses but odd in a big-league animation studio that is on par with Dreamworks and Pixar in visual work quality.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    1 person found this helpful  

    Creative people but Fox Animation holds tight purse strings

    Digital Artist (Former Employee) Greenwich, CT

    ProsWorking with creative and talented people both on the artistic side and technical side that have to solve daily issues in a complex pipeline

    Working on challenging projects

    ConsNo opportunity for growth
    Very tight quarters
    Not a lot of the usual film studio perks

    Advice to Senior ManagementDo something about morale

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    if you're experienced and ambitious with a vision, avoid this place

    Senior Technical Director (Current Employee) Greenwich, CT

    Prospretend family atmosphere - without the love

    Cons- owned and (mis)managed by FOX
    - god awful inept and right out lying HR dept
    - lowest salaries in the industry
    - most 'supervisors' without any experience outside this company
    - pipeline is just a pipe dream
    - unrealistic deadlines
    - panic management at every step
    - dept heads incompetent, mostly clueless and mean spirited

    Advice to Senior Managementyou guys are hopeless. start your studio in India and China already.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Approves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Great Experience, I learned so much. but its very difficult to move up within the company

    Production (Former Employee) Greenwich, CT

    Prosbenefits, security, the artists are some of the most creative people that I have ever had the pleasure to work with.

    ConsLow pay, the HR department is awful!!! They don't care about creating an environment that helps a person advance within the company, they withhold internal job opportunities from certain people so their favorites get the opportunity first. The HR director is from Forbes, a financial business company. Which is great, but Finance and business is much different from the creative industry. The employees need to be treated differently and given more respect.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPush back more against the studio and start respecting the artists. Stop overworking them and underpaying them. Stop agreeing to over-ambitious schedules and sacrificing the quality of life for your employees. Donut Fridays don't make up for not seeing your kids for months at a time while your department is in crunch time.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    The dream job!

    Temp Modeler (Former Employee) Greenwich, CT

    ProsThe opportunity to work with amazing talent. Fantastic group of people to work with on both a professional and personal level. The studio is just the right size and the perks are fantastic. The opportunity to work on some amazing projects which will impact millions of people around the world!

    Consnon that I can think of except for the weather and the fact that the studio is not on the west coast :)

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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