Netflix boss Ted Sarandos becomes the latest mogul to speak out about the Hollywood strikes, and, well, yeah.
Forget being a striking writer or actor and having to figure out how to make up the precipitous shortfall in your income, let’s spare a thought for the CEOs of the studios that they were trying to negotiate with. It can’t be easy having to come out and publicly speak about the strikes without coming off like Scrooge McDuck, but that hasn’t stopped them trying.
Warner Bros Discovery CEO David Zaslav has been publicly booed and widely mocked and that was before he even tried to discuss the strikes. More recently, Disney’s Bob Iger tried to chide those that are striking but chose to do so from a billionaire’s meet-up, presumably where he and the other masters of the universe plan further world domination. Not a good look, really.
Enter Ted Sarandos, who has undoubtedly seen the terrible optics that have dogged Zaslav and Iger and has instead aimed for a different tack. “I was raised in a union household,” the Netflix co-CEO said during Netflix’s latest earnings call. “My dad was a member of IBEW Local 640, he was a union electrician, and I remember his local because that union was very much a part of our lives when I was growing up. And I also remember on more than one occasion, my Dad being out on strike. And I remember that because it takes an enormous toll on your family, financially and emotionally.”
Far be it from us to besmirch the billionaire’s working-class roots, but if he truly does feel an affinity for labour organisations, not to mention the working man and woman, it seems odd that he’s part of an organisation that has now broken off talks with the unions and is refusing to negotiate until the strikes are called off. That goes without mentioning of course that it’s his company’s practices which have created the most disruption in the industry, leading to the current damaging stand-off.
If any of these industry titans truly want the strikes to end, then getting back around the negotiating table is surely the clearest expression of positive intent, rather than words which we imagine won’t mean a whole lot to the people on the picket lines. We’ll bring you more on the strikes as we hear it.
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