Negotiations over a new SAG-AFTRA contract are set to continue on Wednesday, as the studios aim to salvage the box office in the summer of 2024.
The union resumed negotiations on Tuesday for the first time in about two weeks. The studios made a new bid on the most contentious issue – remaining broadcasts – which they hoped would break the stalemate that led to a 103-day strike.
In a note to members Tuesday evening, SAG-AFTRA provided a brief update on the talks.
“Today, the CEOs are back at the table. We are scheduled to continue conversations with them tomorrow.” “We will continue to provide updates with you directly. Remember – don’t believe anything you read in the press unless it comes directly from us. Keep showing up on the picket lines and make your voices heard across the country.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers also filed a response to the union last week regarding regulation of artificial intelligence. The two sides have been dead-set on issues such as minimum compensation for the use of digital replicas, the scope of approvals needed to allow digital replicas, and training in artificial intelligence.
In another week, the joint writers and actors strike will continue for six months. Studios have made clear they are keen to make a deal in the next week to 10 days if they have any hope of salvaging the summer movie season and part of the 2023-24 TV season.
If the strike continues into November, the fear is that the release of more films will be delayed, and there will be little chance of producing even half a season of network television.
SAG-AFTRA’s leadership was strengthened Saturday, when Disney CEO Bob Iger called Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the union’s chief negotiator, to invite the union back to the table.
But the union also faced significant pressure last week to end the strike. Several celebrities, led by George Clooney, presented an alternative set of proposals to the union leadership that were supposed to help resolve the strike. But the union rejected these ideas, saying that they would not work.
Zachary Quinto, star of “Star Trek” and “Margin Call,” recorded a song Instagram video The United Nations on Monday urged members to support the leadership, because “solidarity is the only way we will get what we are asking for in these negotiations.”
“I know everyone is tired. I know we have been in this for over 100 days,” Quinto said. “But we have to stick together as a union. Our job as a union member is to support and stand behind our leadership. If we start questioning their tactics and motives, if we start trying to take matters into our own hands, we weaken our position and play directly into the hands of the AMPTP’s desires. “This is exactly what they want – for us to start questioning each other and questioning our leadership.”
Several members of the negotiating committee thanked Quinto for his support.
“Freelance entrepreneur. Communicator. Gamer. Explorer. Pop culture practitioner.”