Actors in Hollywood are expected to join film and television writers on picket lines as early as Thursday after a union vote in favor of a strike after unsuccessful labor talks with studios.
The national board of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation Actors Union, which has 160,000 members, will vote on Thursday morning on whether or not to issue a strike order. If this bill were to become law, it would be the first time in 63 years that production at Hollywood studios throughout the United States was shut down due to a simultaneous strike.
In the age of streaming TV, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) are fighting for better pay and residuals and protections against the threat of automation.
Fran Drescher, now president of SAG-AFTRA, said the studios’ response to performers’ concerns was “disrespectful” and “Insulting.”
She also stated that the companies would not engage with them on other concerns, which they have “completely stonewalled us” on. Until they begin to negotiate in good faith, we cannot reach a deal.
The writers’ strike has resulted in the indefinite repetition of numerous high-budget movies and late-night TV discussion shows.
Actors’ strike threats would put more pressure on studios to reach an agreement by preventing further production in the United States.
In 1960, the Writers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild went on strike over unpaid residuals from TV broadcasts, marking the last time two strikes at once struck Hollywood.
Conflict has arisen between the unions over the equitable allocation of basic pay and residuals from streaming services.
However, several streaming services have struggled to become viable despite spending billions on content to attract users.
Disney, NBC Universal, Comcast Corp., and Paramount Global all lost 100s of millions due to streaming.
Internet video’s rising popularity has cut into TV’s bottom line even as traditional TV viewing has declined.
The WGA strike has devastated the catering industry, the prop industry, and others that rely on Hollywood production.
A widespread economic impact is possible if more actors join the assault.
There will be no changes to the fall schedules broadcast networks have already planned, which are dominated by reality programming and unaffected by the continuing labor problems.