Lucasfilm reaches settlement over employee recruiting practices

Lucasfilm, the filmmaking company led by renowned director George Lucas, reached a settlement with the United States Department of Justice after it was targeted for inappropriate employee recruiting practices, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The case involved Lucasfilm's history of notifying rival companies when it was on the verge of hiring an employee from that company. According to the DOJ ruling, Lucasfilm's habit of notifying companies when hiring one of their employees "stifled competition," particularly when it comes to anti-trust practices.

"The agreement between Lucasfilm and Pixar restrained competition for digital animators without any pro-competitive justification and distorted its competitive process," said Christine Varney, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the department's anti-trust division. "The proposed settlement resolves the department's anti-trust concerns."

Reportedly, Lucasfilm and Pixar Animation Studios agreed to inform each other when employees were changing sides, rather than cold-call the company when undergoing employee recruiting. According to the Times, it is common practice for large studios to contact one another prior to the recruitment of an executive.

Lucasfilm became ensnared in this case after previous DOJ investigations uncovered similar recruiting violations at high-tech companies such Adobe, Apple, Google and others, UPI details.

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