With Hollywood coming to a close as the writer’s strike enters its fourth month and the actor’s strike only a few weeks in, negotiations between the unions and the studios have been non-existent.  The actors have been calling on the studios to come back to the table to negotiate a deal, and with the general public becoming more vocal about the two sides coming back together so they can enjoy their favourite shows and films, it looks like, hopefully, the two sides are going to be getting back together soon to talk out the problems.

According to Puck News, last Friday, the Hollywood CEOs and key labour executives from the AMPTP (aka the studios, including Disney) got together on a call to figure out the next steps to get Hollywood moving again and have expressed a desire to return to the bargaining table. Disney Entertainment executives Dana Walden and Alan Bergman were both in attendance at this meeting.

Several participants pressed for the members to better align themselves on the key issues—things like residual rates and data transparency—so that chief negotiator Carol Lombardini would know what was and wasn’t acceptable to the membership.
The big issue for the studios is how apart they are apart on some issues, since some studios, like Netflix, have a very different business model than the traditional media studios like Disney.

It’s unknown when the unions and studios will get back together around the table to negotiate, but at some point, they will need to start having regular meetings to resolve the situation. While the studios may be happy to sit out the strike for a while, since it is helping some of the studios reduce the amount of money they are spending on original content, giving their balance sheets a break, while also holding out for a better deal, eventually, the studios are going to need everyone back to work to fill cinemas and streaming services with new original content.

While many expect the strikes to continue until the fall and possibly beyond, nothing will move forward without the two sides sitting at the table talking. Actors and writers, like any other industry striking, need more up-to-date working conditions and a pay rise with the continued cost of living increasing.

Since the Hollywood strikes are impacting on the large economy, politicians like California Governor Gavin Newsom or L.A. Mayor Karen Bass, are also putting more pressure on the unions and studios to come to an agreement to get everything back to normal.

According to an insider at “The Wrap”,

“This has never been a united group. It’s wrong to even think of them as a group. This is a very fractured group of people. The union is one. The studios are many and they are trying to delicately align agendas. But they have to be very careful with competitive information. What are you saying about coming trends, that you’re addressing in front of Max and Disney?”

The general mandate seems to be “Let’s Get Moving”, with some mutual agreement among the producers on specific topics and that they are “really, really close” on the question of artificial intelligence and how to protect the rights of actors to their digital likenesses.

Another issue that was making progress between the studios is on the residual systems, which remains a significant problem for many studios, along with being open to providing data to prove how successful a show is.

With the writer’s strike continuing, there were two major issues that the studio heads discussed, including the question of mandatory staffing, which “will be tough to overcome.” Another major issue involving the length of employment for writers is more likely to be agreed upon.

Hopefully, with the studios now getting together, to potentially agree on what issues they agree on and what they do, we will see some movement with the unions, as nothing will get resolved without compromise on all sides and, more importantly, communication between them.

When do you think the strikes are going to come to an end?  Let us know on social media!

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Roger Palmer

Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom. Email: Roger@WhatsOnDisneyPlus.com Twitter: Twitter.com/RogPalmerUK Facebook: Facebook.com/rogpalmeruk

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