LOS ANGELES (TheWrap.com) - Unpaid internships are commonplace in the movie business and considered a necessary step for aspiring filmmakers. But two former interns on “Black Swan” are striking back at the practice.
They’re suing the Oscar-winning film’s producer Fox Searchlight for violating minimum wage and overtime laws, the New York Times reports.
A spokesperson for Fox Searchlight did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The suit was filed in Manhattan federal court on behalf of Alex Footman, a Wesleyan film school graduate, and Eric Glatt, a Case Western Reserve University MBA. Footman served as a production intern and Glatt was employed as an accounting intern.
The lawsuit argues that the production used unpaid interns to perform “menial tasks” that should have been performed by paid employees.
According to the Times, labor rules require that unpaid internships must offer an educational component -- something the “Black Swan” interns say Fox Searchlight failed to provide.