On Tuesday, the Hollywood Studios and the actor’s union, SAG-AFTRA, met once again to try to resolve the actor’s strike, following the studios walking out of the last meeting two weeks ago, over a request by the actor’s union to get 2% of all streaming services (including Disney+ and Hulu) revenue to pay its actors more bonuses.
The meeting was held at the Guild’s Wilshire Blvd headquarters Tuesday and was attended by Disney’s Bob Iger, NBCUniversal’s Donna Langley, Warner Bros Discovery’s David Zaslav and Netflix’s Ted Sarandos in addition to SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher, chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, chief contracts officer Ray Rodriguez and others.
The actor’s union began its strike in July and is fighting with the studios to get better working conditions, protection against artificial intelligence and better pay. Once the writer’s strike was resolved, the studio’s attention was shifted to getting the actor’s strike over, and the two sides have negotiated improvements on many of the issues addressed by the actors union. However, there are still two critical sticky points, AI and getting a slice of streaming services revenue.
The studios have indicated that the demand for 2% of all streaming revenue is a non-starter, with Netflix’s CEO Ted Sarandos stating publically that this would be a levy on every Netflix subscriber. SAG-AFTRA say this would cost just 57 center per year per subscriber, which is why when the counter offer was made by the actor’s union, the studios got infuriated with the last minute demand, so the actor’s union did counter with just 1% of the streaming revenue, but the studio CEO walked out. Resulting in weeks of lost negotiations.
In a statement SAG-AFTRA said:
Today, the CEOs came back to the table. We are scheduled to continue talks with them tomorrow.
We will continue to provide updates with you directly. Remember – don’t believe anything you read in the press unless it comes directly from us.
Keep showing up on the picket lines and make your voices heard around the country.
In solidarity and gratitude,
Your TV/Theatrical Negotiating Committee
As with any situation, there are two sides to the story, with SAG using social media to try to keep its members and the public on their side, while the studios tend to have their options on the current situation “leaked” out through the major trades, to also persuade the public and other people within the industry that the problems are coming from the other side. So any news coming from either side, should be viewed as skewed.
Hopefully, the negotiations between the union and the studios will continue, without any more threats of walking away as the industry has been suffering since the start of May with reduced production, which has put many people out of work and for the public, we will see a big impact over the next year with less scripted programming on streaming services like Disney+ and Hulu.
Do you think the strike will be resolved soon? Let us know on social media!