Earlier this summer, the Screen Actors Guild Of America (SAG-AFTRA) went on strike, causing production on shows and films around the world, as members of the union fought to get better pay and conditions from the major studios including Netflix, Warner Brothers Discovery, and Disney.

In November, a new agreement was made between the studios (Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers aka AMPTP), which resulted in the strike coming to an end, with the union members then voting for the deal.

Today, it was announced that members of SAG-AFTRA have ratified the 2023 TV/Theatrical Agreement and approved the new, multi-year contracts covering television, theatrical and streaming production by a vote of 78.33% to 21.67% with a turnout of 38.15%.

SAG-AFTRA’s transformational agreement with the AMPTP achieves some of the most significant updates to the contract in generations. The deal includes more than $1 billion in new compensation and benefit plan funding, along with outsized gains to the traditional residuals formulas. It offers a new compensation model for performers working in streaming, with a substantial bonus on top of existing residuals structures, plus compensation escalation for principal and background actors. Additionally, the deal establishes detailed informed consent and compensation guardrails for the use of AI, hair and makeup equity, meaningful protections for the casting process, sexual harassment prevention protections and more.

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher said in a statement:

“I’m proud of our SAG-AFTRA membership. They struck for 118 days to grant the TV/Theatrical Negotiating Committee the necessary leverage to secure over $1 billion in gains, along with the union’s first-ever protections around AI technology. Now they’ve locked in the gains by ratifying the contract. SAG-AFTRA members have remained incredibly engaged throughout this process, and I know they’ll continue their advocacy throughout our next negotiation cycle. This is a golden age for SAG-AFTRA, and our union has never been more powerful.”

SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director & Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland added:

“SAG-AFTRA members demanded a fundamental change in the way this industry treats them: fairness in compensation for their labor, protection from abusive use of AI technology, strengthened benefit plans, and equitable and respectful treatment for all members, among other things. This new contract delivers on these objectives and makes substantial progress in moving the industry in the right direction. By ratifying this contract, members have made it clear that they’re eager to use their unity to lay the groundwork for a better industry, improving the lives of those working in their profession. In any democratic institution, there will be disagreement at times. But no one should mistake the robust debate and democracy within SAG-AFTRA for any lack of unity in our purpose or mission: to protect and advance the cause of SAG-AFTRA members, now and forever.”

Votes were submitted online and by mail-in ballot, with the deadline of today, Dec. 5, 2023, at 5 p.m. PT. The final vote was certified by Integrity Voting Systems, an impartial election service based in Everett, Washington.

The agreement is effective retroactive to November 9th 2023, and expires June 30th, 2026.

Over the past few weeks, there had been concern that the union members might have rejected the deal over the AI terms, as many members of the union had been vocal on social media that they didn’t feel the deal went far enough, but with almost 80% of people voting for the new deal, it’s passed.  It’s also worth noting that over 60% of union members didn’t even vote, indicating they wanted to go along with whatever was decided.

The good news now is that the union members have a better deal, and there will be no more disruption to filming, so the actor’s and the rest of Hollywood can continue to make shows and films for us to enjoy.


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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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