The Writers Guild of America’s recent strike against Hollywood companies may result in a long and destructive standoff between the two sides. Both sides remain far apart, and it seems that the W.G.A. will stay on strike for as long as necessary to achieve their demands.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers is also prepared to weather the strike for at least 100 days. The most recent writers’ strike, which began in 2007 and ended in 2008, lasted that long.
All Updates on the Ongoing Writers’ Strike
The main issue at hand is that writers want media companies, especially Netflix, to make structural changes to the way they do business. The W.G.A. is proposing mandatory staffing and employment guarantees, which are necessary because entertainment companies are increasingly relying on a mini-room of writers.
In this scenario, studios hire a small group of writers to develop a series and write several scripts over two or three months. Because they have not officially ordered the series, studios pay writers less than if they were in a large, traditional writers’ room.
W.G.A. strike against Hollywood companies
Writers contend that this system makes it difficult for them to find another job if the show is not picked up, and even if it does get a green light, fewer writers are sometimes hired because blueprints and several scripts have already been created. Studios believe that mandatory staffing and duration of employment is a hiring quota that is incompatible with the creative nature of the industry.
The other demand is that studios should not let artificial intelligence encroach on writers’ credit or compensation. Writers want companies to agree to guarantee that artificial intelligence will not encroach on their credits and compensation. However, the studio alliance says that such guarantees are a nonstarter and suggests an annual meeting on advances in technology.
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The studio alliance contends that A.I. raises hard, important creative and legal questions for everyone, which require a lot more discussion. Chris Keyser, a chair of the W.G.A. negotiating committee, believes that this is the same offer the studio alliance made in 2007 with the internet, and he is not interested in repeating that experience.
The strike could have a considerable impact on the Emmy Awards, scheduled for September 18, and delay the fall TV season. Both sides have insisted that the other needs to make the first move to restart talks, and for now, media companies have turned to contract renewal negotiations with the Directors Guild of America. This contract expires on June 30.
The W.G.A. strike against Hollywood companies may have a considerable impact on the entertainment industry, including the Emmy Awards and the fall TV season. Both sides remain far apart, with the W.G.A.
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Demanding mandatory staffing and employment guarantees and asking for protection from artificial intelligence encroaching on their credits and compensation. Meanwhile, studios believe that such guarantees are a nonstarter and prefer to have annual meetings on advances in technology. Only time will tell how this standoff will end, but for now, both sides appear to be prepared for a protracted affair.