Los Angeles, United States: Hollywood television and movie writers will go on strike, their union said Monday, after talks with studios and streamers on pay and other conditions ended without a deal.
Writers Guild of America board members “acting upon the authority granted to them by their memberships, have voted unanimously to call a strike,” effective after midnight Tuesday, the organization tweeted.
The Board of Directors of the @WGAwest and the Council of the @WGAeast, acting upon the authority granted to them by their memberships, have voted unanimously to call a strike, effective 12:01 AM, Tuesday, May 2.
— Writers Guild of America West (@WGAWest) May 2, 2023
Both sides, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and the Writers Guild of America, announced on Monday night that they pair failed to strike a deal before negotiations ended today, prompting a strike to begin at one minute after midnight on Tuesday.
In a statement released on Monday night, the AMPTP said they presented a “comprehensive package proposal to the Guilld last night which included generous increases in compensation for writers as well as improvements in streaming residuals.”
“Though our Negotiating Committee began this process intent on making a fair deal, the studios’ responses have been wholly insufficient given the existential crisis writers are facing,” WGA tweeted on May 1.
The AMPTP said that the major points of disagreement surrounded “mandatory staffing” and “duration of employment.” In the month leading to the strike, the WGA said they are pushing for an increase in pay and residuals, especially relating to streaming productions.
“Writers are making 23% less than we were 10 years ago, while the companies are making record profits — and that’s what we’re looking to address,” said WGA negotiating team committee member Adam Conover.
Conover continued and added that writers are put in unfair situations and compared the residuals made between movies debuted in theaters and streaming platforms.
“If you write a movie for theatrical, where they put it in the movie theaters,” said Conover. “If you write the very same movie for streaming, you are paid far, far less in residuals — and residuals are how writers make our year in between our jobs. A movie is a movie either way.”
The last time writers went on strike was in 2007-2008. It lasted 100 days. While the strike will begin on Tuesday morning, picketing will not start until Tuesday afternoon.
If the like lasts it will create a perfect storm as the studios’ contracts with the Directors Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild- American Federation of Television and Radio Artists expires in June.