As Hollywood’s writers strike and negotiations stall, the DGA prepares to begin its own talks with the producers’ alliance.
As you likely know already, the Writers Guild of America has instructed all of its members to down tools and take part in what is likely to be a lengthy strike action. Negotiations with the American Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) reached an impasse during talks last month and the strike action began at the beginning of the month. Furthermore, there seems to be little common ground between the two parties meaning that many onlookers are predicting a long strike could be on the cards, perhaps even exceeding the protracted 100 day action of 2007/8 which was estimated to have cost the LA economy around $2bn.
Next up to the negotiating table is the Directors’ Guild of America.
How talks progress in this upcoming negotiation will play a key role in determining the outcome of the ongoing writers’ strike. Should the DGA come to a deal with the AMPTP, that will put pressure on the writers to take similar terms on matters such as streaming residuals. However, if the DGA also fails to reach an agreement with the AMPTP, a strike action that sees directors remove their labour will accelerate the problems faced by studios.
Thanks to Deadline, we have a list of the demands being made by the DGA which you can see below:
- Securing wage increases that address inflation.
- Maintaining the strength and sustainability of our world-class pension and health care plans.
- Negotiating meaningful increases and structural changes to streaming residual formulas that account for the global growth of the audience.
- Protecting the role and vision of Directors.
- Protecting our jurisdiction over projects produced abroad for U.S. audiences.
- Improving safety on the set by expanding and encouraging training and addressing long workdays.
- Increasing diversity, equity and inclusion and strengthening the voices of under-represented people.
- Looking out for the full directorial team – the Assistant Directors, UPMs, Associate Directors and Stage Managers – who sustain every production with their hard work and professionalism.
Talks are set to get underway today. It’s the increases in wages and the improvement of streaming residual formulas which are likely to be the most hotly-contested areas. Studios seem all too willing to plead poverty at the moment, claiming that the streaming market isn’t yet profitable. Of course, all of this is going on whilst studio top brass such as Warner Bros Discovery’s David Zaslav and Disney’s Bob Iger are being paid obscene amounts of money to do their jobs.
Whatever happens next, expect a spell of radio silence as negotiations get underway. When we do hear news though, you can be sure we’ll let you know.
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