SAG Strike Imminent After Actors Fail To Reach Deal With AMPTP Studios

SAG Strike Imminent After Actors Fail To Reach Deal With AMPTP Studios
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A historic double strike that will effectively shut down Hollywood appears imminent after a union representing nearly all television and film actors failed to secure a new contract with major studios by Wednesday’s midnight deadline.

The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) announced overnight that its bargaining committee had voted unanimously to recommend a strike by its 160,000 members, after weeks of negotiations with companies such as Netflix, Amazon, Disney and Warner Bros. disintegrates.

Live Updates: Hollywood actors’ strike looms as SAG-AFTRA talks fall apart

SAG-AFTRA will hold a press conference at noon Los Angeles time after its National Board of Directors votes on whether to formalize the strike, joining an ongoing walkout by Hollywood writers for the first time. in 63 years.

“Studios and streamers have implemented massive unilateral changes to our industry’s business model, while insisting on keeping our contracts frozen in amber,” SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director Duncan Crabtree said. Ireland, in a statement, adding, “Their refusal to meaningfully engage with our key propositions and fundamental disrespect for our members is what has brought us to this point. Studios and streamers have underwhelmed esteemed the determination of our members, because they are about to discover it fully.

Union president Fran Drescher also lambasted the Alliance of Film and Television Producers – the bargaining group representing major studios with whom she had publicly hoped to reach an agreement a few weeks earlier.

“The AMPTP’s responses to the union’s most important proposals have been insulting and disrespectful of our massive contributions to this industry,” Drescher said. “Companies have refused to engage meaningfully on some issues and on others have completely blocked us. Until they negotiate in good faith, we cannot begin to reach an agreement.

SAG-AFTRA is about to strike. Here’s how it could impact Hollywood

The AMPTP blamed the actors’ union for not reaching an agreement.

“Rather than continue to negotiate, SAG-AFTRA has put us on a path that will compound the financial hardship of thousands of people who depend on the industry for their livelihoods,” said AMPTP spokesman Scott Rowe. , in a press release.

The actors’ demands largely mirror those of their counterparts at the Writers Guild of America, whose 11,000 members have been on strike for months. They want restrictions on artificial intelligence technology that can already simulate an artist’s likeness or a writer’s style, and a transformative new business model for the age of streaming, which unions say transforms Hollywood’s creative process into a gig economy.

The TV writers spoke to The Post about what they hope their industry-wide strike will do for future generations. (Video: Allie Caren/The Washington Post)

Production on many shows and movies has already halted since the WGA went on strike in early May. A joint walkout by the cast is expected to halt nearly all remaining filming.

SAG-AFTRA and the studios have been trying for weeks to avoid a second strike, extending the original June 30 deadline until this month and making a last-minute request for help from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service of the US government, which sent a senior mediator. to participate in the final round of talks on Wednesday.

It didn’t help, and Hollywood is now bracing for nearly every on-air talent to leave the set. Leading actors such as Meryl Streep, Jamie Lee Curtis, Quinta Brunson and Pedro Pascal previously declared their willingness to strike in an open letter to SAG-AFTRA executives. (Greg D. Raelson, FMCS director of congressional and public affairs, said mediators will remain available to help.)

A double strike with writers would be almost unprecedented. While actors and writers have both walked off the set on several occasions – including the 2007 writers’ strike and a six-month-long performers’ strike in 2000 that was one of the longest entertainment strikes in the world. history – they only picketed once simultaneously: in 1960, when the Screen Actors Guild was headed by Ronald Reagan.

This double walkout ended when the studios agreed — among other transformative terms — to pay actors a percentage of the money earned when the films were licensed for television.

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