July 21, 2024

Common Wealth Geography

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Hollywood Studios and SAG-AFTRA Resolve Actors Strike: A Deal Finally Reached

The SAG-AFTRA strike, also known as the actors strike, had a significant impact on the entertainment industry. However, after 118 days, the union has reached a tentative three-year deal with studios, as mentioned in The Hollywood Reporter, bringing an end to the strike. This second strike of the year was a result of poor working conditions and low wages. The SAG-AFTRA TV/Theatrical Committee unanimously approved the agreement on November 8, and the strike concluded at 12:01 am on November 9. The union’s national board is set to approve the deal on November 10. Negotiators reached a preliminary agreement with the AMPTP, including companies like Walt Disney and Netflix, allowing Hollywood to resume full production for the first time since May. The union has informed its members that the agreement is worth over $1 billion, bringing pay raises, a bonus for streaming, and AI regulations. The deal also raises limits on health and pension funds and aims to pay background actors more. The AMPTP stated that the tentative agreement represents a new paradigm, providing SAG-AFTRA with the biggest contract-on-contract gains in the history of the union. Additionally, it must be noted that SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP didn’t come to terms on July 12, 2023, as a result of which, the actors strike continued. However, the other strike by The Writers Guild of America (WGA) reached a consensus on September 27, 2023. The writer strike was 148 days long, reaching an agreement effective from 12:01 am PT on September 27, 2023. The strike began in May and saw SAG-AFTRA join in mid-July. The new deal, effective until May 1, 2026, prohibits AI use in writing without studio approval and sets minimum staffing requirements for TV writers’ rooms based on episode count. The writer strike deal includes addressing the use of Artificial Intelligence in scriptwriting, enhancing health and pension benefits, and improving pay structure for screenwriters. It also establishes a viewership-based bonus model for streaming and renews funding for the Showrunner Training Program. This agreement represents a significant step forward in recognizing the value of writers in the entertainment industry, particularly in the shifting landscape towards streaming content. All in all, the entertainment industry breathes a sigh of relief as the SAG-AFTRA strike concludes with a groundbreaking deal after 118 days.