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Paramount Pictures cuts 110 jobs despite a string of box office hits

The studio will cut 5 percent of its workforce in its second round of layoffs in two years.

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Hollywood film studio Paramount Pictures announced it is cutting 110 staff members despite a string of box office successes in 2013. (David McNew/AFP/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES —Paramount Pictures announced it will eliminate 110 positions from its Los Angeles and international offices in the studio's latest round of job cuts.

In a memo to employees, Paramount's chief operating officer, Frederick Huntsberry, said the staff cuts formed part of an "organizational realignment" and would hit the company's finance, human resources, information technology, international home media distribution, legal and marketing departments.

"Change is always difficult and we never take these steps lightly," Huntsberry wrote. 

"We are confident that these changes will allow us to manage our business with greater speed and flexibility and fully capitalize on opportunities in the global entertainment market."

This is the second round of job cuts at the Viacom-owned studio in two years.

In October 2011, 120 staff members were let go and the company now has around 2,200 employees.

The job cuts come after the studio had a healthy rebound from a sluggish 2012.

The zombie film "World War Z" with Brad Pitt earned a healthy $539 million worldwide; JJ Abrams' "Star Trek Into Darkness" grossed $467 million and "G.I. Joe" brought in $372 million.

Philipp Dauman, the CEO of studio parent Viacom, has been dropping hints for months that the studio was in for some cost cutting measures.

Last week he told investors that the studio would focus on "low risk" films including high budget franchises like Transformers and Mission: Impossible.

Back in May he told the Nomura US Media & Telecom Summit that Paramount would "focus on profitability" by integrating with other Viacom businesses, reports Variety.

"For the most part we’re going to greenlight films with consumer products potential," he said, such as the planned reboot of the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" franchise.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/131001/paramount-pictures-cuts-110-jobs-despite-string-