Another strike threatens Hollywood

Andrew Huff (’10)/Eastside Staff

Less than a year after the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike that put the entertainment industry on hold for 100days, the actors of the entertainment industry are preparing for their own match against Hollywood.

Following in the steps of the WGA,the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), which represents actors and actresses, has been unsuccessful in negotiating new contracts with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers(AMPTP). The main argument in the contract negotiations, the same which sparked the WGA strike deals with new media sources, lies with the new and ambiguous field of online viewing of TV shows and movies. They argue over payment for the use of online material, an issue which the WGA fought earlier this year. Due to the lack of an agreement between SAG and AMPTP, SAG has begun preparing for a vote to begin a strike.

According to TV Guide’s website, the Guild needs 75 percent of its 120,000 members to vote in favor of the strike for it to go forward. The support of a strike could effectively shut down Hollywood again for the second time in one year.

SAG says on its website that it attempted to negotiate with AMPTP, but could not reach a decision that would benefit SAG members, therefore initiating the desire for “strike authorization ballots.” The website also says that the Guild “cannot allow [its] employers to undermine the futures of [its] members and their families.”

A SAG strike in the aftermath of the writer’s strike could mark an important turning point in Hollywood, compensating actors for the showing of their work online.

For the rest of us, it could mean a longer wait for TV shows and movies–and a need for more DVD’s.