Apoptosis (programmed cell death) is essential for development and tissue maintenance in many organisms. In mammals and C. elegans, Bcl-2 family proteins facilitate apoptosis by regulating mitochondrial dynamics but do they play a similar role during apoptosis in Drosophila? According to Kimberly McCall and co-workers, the answer to this question is yes in the Drosophila ovary (see p. 327). During mid-oogenesis in flies, apoptosis is induced in some of the egg chambers in the ovary when nutrients are scarce. The researchers show that, during this event, the mitochondrial networks of ovarian nurse cells undergo extensive remodelling, cluster formation and cluster engulfment by somatic follicle cells. These mitochondrial dynamics, they report, are dependent on caspases, the Bcl-2 family, the mitochondrial fission and fusion machinery and the autophagic machinery. Furthermore, cell death in the ovary is defective in Bcl-2 family mutants. Thus, the researchers conclude, Bcl-2 family proteins do play a major role in controlling both mitochondrial dynamics and cell death in the Drosophila ovary.