With excitement in the air for the tentative deal for the WGA and AMPTP and writers preparing to return to daytime and late-night television talk shows, the impact of the new agreement on the motion picture side may not be immediate given how these unfinished feature productions have stalled for the studios to settle with SAG-AFTRA.
With the possibility of writers’ rooms returning to work during the guild’s ratification vote before a contract is in place, there may be instances where a TV series in the works takes precedence over a film project once the actors return, and vice versa. It’s a similar situation to what happened during the Covid crisis: scheduling conflicts are bound to arise with actors once the industry returns fully to work. Read, there was a situation during Covid where Nicholas Hoult had to drop out Mission Impossible – Dead Reckoning – Part One Due to her duties on Hulu The Great. We can see similar situations where a project loses an actor due to being committed to a first-priority project, where the TV rooms will push scripts out much faster than those writers on the features side.
As Peter White reported today, there is optimism that the majority of the network’s dramas and comedies will be able to launch in the new year thanks to news of the pending deal last night. If the SAG-AFTRA strike ends in the near future, most feature productions are eyeing a start or restart date in 2024. This also gives studios plenty of time to get their crews together, as well as cast, which could potentially resolve conflicts Possible scheduling with actors.
As expected due to the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike, the 2024 theatrical release schedule remains in flux. One motion picture marketing source over the weekend described next year’s release calendar as “unreal,” meaning it’s still questionable whether films that haven’t completed production, like Marvel Studios/Disney’s Deadpool 3 (dated May 3, 2024) and Mission Impossible 8 (June 28, 2024), and Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse (TBD), the latter of which requires a lot of voice-over work, to even meet its release dates.
However, the upside for motion picture studios, in light of the initial agreement, is that writers can now meet with directors if necessary, if unfinished films require any polishing. In addition to the films mentioned above, we understand that Warner Bros. Jenna Ortega Beetlejuice The film has a few more days before it is 100% laminated. Paramount Gladiator Ridley Scott’s sequel also requires more filming.
Additionally, any scenarios that were not turned in before the raid, these writers will soon be able to finish them.
Also, studios can start meeting with candidates and pitching for Open Writing Assignments (OWA) for films, i.e. new DC Batman: The Brave and the Boldwhich hired Andy Muschietti as its director.
As for the spec market, while there may be a rebound as book reps can now send original scripts from clients to studio executives. Some sources with writing clients believe the spot market will be sluggish, and that there will likely be a bigger rally after SAG-AFTRA ends its strike. The reason is that actors are careful about being associated with packages because of the optics during the SAG-AFTRA strike.
Also, with the agreement points for the tentative agreement yet to be announced, it remains to be seen what exact gains the essayists have made. We can know tomorrow when the WGAE and WGAW vote to approve the new deal, or in the next few days when it is sent for ratification. In AMPTP’s August 11 proposal to writers, announced on August 22, feature film writers, who are hired on the first draft of an original screenplay, were offered the first chance to do a rewrite at a minimum price of $100. than the applicable minimum compensation. Studios at the time also offered raises to SVOD film writers with writers on projects of 96 minutes or longer with a budget of $40 million or more for an SVOD platform with 20 million or more subscribers with a raise of $100,000 (+18.3%). The studios also proposed increasing the remaining base by 25.7% to $75,000.
We’ll update you as we learn more about the benefits of feature writers, and motion picture making maneuvers, from the New Deal.
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