Studios and streaming giants unveil proposal amidst actors strike

05.11.2023 posted by Admin

Studios unveil game-changing proposal amidst actors strike

Hollywood studios and major streaming platforms came together on Saturday to share a comprehensive set of proposals with SAG-AFTRA leadership in an effort to put an end to the actors' strike.

After the meeting, the union sent a message to its members, informing them that the negotiation committee is currently evaluating what they consider to be the companies' "final and best offer." They also encouraged members to disregard any speculations and rumors from external sources. Following a thorough staff review on Saturday, the union's negotiation committee will convene on Sunday to discuss the terms.

The bargaining session on Saturday witnessed the presence of an increased number of CEOs from major studios and streaming platforms, according to information obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.

Behind the scenes, high-ranking executives have hinted that they might conclude negotiations for the time being, perhaps until the new year, if SAG-AFTRA does not accept what one studio insider referred to as a deal "more valuable than the last three agreements combined."

In recent days, studios have conveyed to SAG leadership that if there is no progress by the first or second week of November, it could disrupt their 2024 summer movie lineup and the upcoming TV season, which has already been affected.

One source commented, "This is an extremely favorable deal for them; they've achieved almost all of their demands and are back for more." They added that if a deal is not reached over the weekend or early next week, it could mean the end of negotiations.

Regarding the final offer, the studios and streaming platforms made substantial concessions, including enhanced protection for actors in the realm of artificial intelligence (AI) and the highest wage increases in 40 years. Additionally, a new streaming residual system based on performance metrics was introduced.

The two parties gathered via Zoom on Saturday after the studios presented their most recent offer to the union's top negotiators on Friday night. Studio leaders like Bob Iger from Disney, Donna Langley from NBCUniversal, Ted Sarandos from Netflix, and David Zaslav from Warner Bros. Discovery had participated in previous negotiation sessions with SAG-AFTRA this year, as well as with the Writers Guild of America prior to their late-September deal. However, Saturday's meeting was more extensive, with top executives from Paramount, Sony, Apple, and Amazon also in attendance, representing all major traditional Hollywood studios along with three major tech giants with significant film and TV interests.

This substantial turnout underlines the seriousness of the SAG-AFTRA strike, which is now in its 114th day. As of Saturday, various sources provided differing opinions on when an agreement might be reached, with some more optimistic than others about a swift resolution at this stage. The SAG-AFTRA negotiation committee assembled on Saturday morning to prepare for the day's bargaining session.

Since October 24, the two parties have been consistently meeting at the negotiation table. While Iger, Langley, Sarandos, and Zaslav have attended some of these meetings, AMPTP president Carol Lombardini has recently taken the lead in representing the studios.

A little over a week ago, a broader group of top executives met with SAG-AFTRA chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland and union president Fran Drescher. This meeting aimed to address the challenges posed by the strike to TV and film production schedules, highlighting the critical point they are approaching. In addition to the four regular executives who have participated in previous negotiation sessions, the call included Sony Pictures chairperson Tony Vinciquerra, Paramount CEO Brian Robbins, and Amazon Studios' Mike Hopkins and Jennifer Salke.
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