The Writers Guild of America is on its 99th day of strike against The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists will reach one month of strike Monday.
After three months of silence, conversations between the WGA and AMPTP have continued. On Friday, WGA Chief Negotiator, Ellen Stutzman, and WGA general counsel, Tony Segall, met with AMPTP staff, including President of AMPTP Carol Lombardini, to revisit opening negotiations for a new agreement. According to a WGA letter, no agreement was made during the meeting.
History of the strike
After months of unproductive contract negotiations between WGA and AMPTP, the WGA members voted to strike against AMPTP once their current contract was spent. On May 1 WGA’s contract with AMPTP expired. On May 2 the WGA went on strike — all WGA members left their pens, paper and computers at home to join their peers on picket lines.
The WGA has developed a list of things they would like addressed in their new contract with AMPTP. The union’s pattern of demands can be found on the WGA website. The list includes increasing the minimum compensation for writers, expanding protections to cover all television writers, regulating the use of AI and increasing health fund and pension plan contributions, as well as other demands.
The AMPTP released its views on a few of the WGA’s talking points. This information can be found on the AMPTP website.
In a letter to its members on May 1, WGA called its writers to arms, “Here is what all writers know: the companies have broken this business. They have taken so much from the very people, the writers, who have made them wealthy. But what they cannot take from us is each other, our solidarity, our mutual commitment to save ourselves and this profession that we love. We had hoped to do this through reasonable conversation. Now we will do it through struggle. For the sake of our present and our future, we have been given no other choice.”
“(We are) two unions on strike willing to exercise their power, despite the pain, to ensure their members get the contract they deserve,” Negotiating Committee Co-Chair Chris Keyser said in a video posted on the WGA strike page on July 26.
AMPTP has maintained its perspective that its goal is to get people back to work.
With the recent releases of box office hits like Barbie, Oppenheimer and Sound of Freedom, audiences have yet to feel the effects of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. However, production for several anticipated films has been brought to a halt due to contract disagreements, according to Variety.