Another entertainment industry strike is looming over the horizon. The Screen Actors Guild recently voted to approve a strike if negotiations between the Guild and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers aren’t resolved by June 30th, 2023.
Around 65,000 Screen Actors Guild members supported a motion to strike ahead of negotiations, with nearly 98 percent of voters in agreement. Some alterations to the contracts include better healthcare and pension plans in addition to altering the audition process.
“I could not be more pleased with this response from the membership. This overwhelming yes vote is a clear statement that it’s time for an evolution in this contract. As we enter what may be one of the most consequential negotiations in the union’s history, inflation, dwindling residuals due to streaming, and generative AI all threaten actors’ ability to earn a livelihood if our contracts are not adapted to reflect the new realities. This strike authorization means we enter our negotiations from a position of strength so that we can deliver the deal our members want and deserve,” said SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers narrowly avoided a trifecta of union strikes. Recently, the Directors Guild of America reached an agreement with the alliance. The Writers Guild of America is still going strong, refusing to budge on contract terms for the sixth week in a row, already causing networks to scramble to fill the upcoming fall season with either unscripted television or reruns.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers’ refusal to accept the Writers Guild of America’s contract renewal terms has already caused a number of productions to cease, including the new Blade Runner series, Stranger Things, and House of the Dragon.
Amazon also didn’t include the long-anticipated fourth season of The Boys on its June premiere list, which finished filming earlier this year. A Screen Actors Guild strike could complicate and even delay post-production resulting in the series continuation being released sometime next summer.
President Fran Drescher of the Screen Actors Guild said:
“The strike authorization votes have been tabulated and the membership joined their elected leadership and negotiating committee in favor of strength and solidarity. I’m proud of all of you who voted as well as those who were vocally supportive, even if unable to vote. Everyone played a part in this achievement. Together we lock elbows and in unity, we build a new contract that honors our contributions in this remarkable industry, reflects the new digital and streaming business model and brings ALL our concerns for protections and benefits into the now! Bravo SAG-AFTRA, we are in it to win it.”
This all does raise the question about how long until we see more reality shows to replace the writers and actors who could soon both be on strike.