Nearly four months since the WGA strike began, talks between the writers and studios are once again at a standstill.
It’s been nearly four months since the Writers Guild of America went on strike and there’s no sign that a deal will be reached anytime soon. After a week of meetings, THR reports that talks between the WGA and the AMPTP (Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers) are once again at a standstill with no further talks currently scheduled.
The WGA met with Bob Iger, Donna Langley, Ted Sarandos, David Zaslav, and Carol Lombardini earlier this week with the understanding that they were finally ready to make a deal. However, the WGA Negotiating Committee said that they were instead “met with a lecture about how good their single and only counteroffer was.“
“We explained all the ways in which their counter’s limitations and loopholes and omissions failed to sufficiently protect writers from the existential threats that caused us to strike in the first place,” the WGA release continued. “We told them that a strike has a price, and that price is an answer to all – and not just some – of the problems they have created in the business. But this wasn’t a meeting to make a deal. This was a meeting to get us to cave, which is why, not twenty minutes after we left the meeting, the AMPTP released its summary of their proposals.”
The release of the AMPTP’s counteroffer was slammed as a strategy “not to bargain, but to jam us” and “to bet that we will turn on each other.” One comedy showrunner told THR that the counteroffer release was an “unfocused error” on the part of the AMPTP. “They are treating us like children. Flying in CEOs to explain why this is a good deal and we should take it. Bring in mom and dad to give us a lecture,” the showrunner said. “Anyone who has tangled with business affairs on any deal knows that this is what they try to do to us, always. There’s always a call from our agents or lawyers telling us we are being unreasonable. It’s always a best and final and there’s never enough money until you push back and it miraculously appears.“
THR’s report states that according to sources on both sides, “there remains no timetable for when negotiations for the group representing Hollywood’s studios and streamers and the Writers Guild’s negotiating committee will return to talks.” Although the WGA says that “progress had been made” during the meeting, the AMPTP’s offer was the equivalent of “giving with one hand and taking back with the other.”
With SAG-AFTRA also on strike alongside the WGA, you would think that the studios would want to make a deal as quickly as possible. The estimated costs of the WGA deal would be mere peanuts compared to the annual revenues of the major studios, but here we are… 115 days later with nearly every movie and TV show in Hollywood on pause.
Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/writers-strike-update/