The union said it would end the strike immediately, though its more than 11,000 members were warned not to return to work until the language of the contract was agreed upon, then ratified by WGA leaders and members of the public in the coming days. Until then, we are on strike,” the statement said.
But still the deal It marks the most hopeful sign of progress since May, when the WGA and a consortium of major studios and streaming services failed to renew their old deal. The sides were divided on issues such as pay for writers and the use of artificial intelligence to create scripts. The WGA strike lasted nearly 150 days, making it one of Hollywood’s longest labor strikes.
“I am extremely proud of the hard work and dedication of all WGA members, not only on the negotiating team, but who have shown incredible unity in fighting for a fair deal,” said WGA member Gloria Calderon Kellett, co-creator. “One day at a time.”
Even if the writers return to work in the coming days, it is It can’t end Hollywood’s labor crisis by itself. After signing a new contract with writers, the studios must restart the negotiation process with another union representing tens of thousands of television and film actors who went on strike over the summer.
“Hopefully, a precedent is established, actors can get a fair deal, and we can all get back to work very soon,” said WGA member Michael Jamin (“King of the Hill,” “Just Shoot Me”), striking-commentary updates from his 160,000 followers on Instagram.
According to Sunday’s report, whatever agreement the two sides reached was not put into the language of a final agreement. “While we are eager to share with you the details of what we have achieved, we cannot do so until the last ‘i’ is dotted,” it said. “Doing so would complicate our ability to get the job done.”
Once the deal is finalized, the WGA’s negotiating committee must ratify it, followed by the board of directors for the union’s eastern and western branches — tentatively scheduled to hold votes by Tuesday.
If the contract is approved by leadership, the WGA will make the contract language public and hold meetings about it for the union’s roughly 11,500 members. Those members will hold a ratification vote, and if a majority of them approve the contract, the union will send them back to work.
WGA members have overwhelmingly voted in favor of new contracts in recent negotiating cycles held every three years. More than 97 percent of WGA voters Approved The 2020 deal expired in May and triggered the current strike, and the 2017 deal before that.
The agreement ended the WGA’s last strike in 2008 Slightly less popular93.6 percent of the more than 4,000 voting members approved its approval.
Union leaders do not have to wait for a ratification vote to end the strike. In 2008, WGA board members Voted Writers must be allowed to return to work two weeks before the new contract is approved. In a statement Sunday, WGA negotiators said union leaders may decide to do the same this time: “It would allow writers to return to work during the ratification vote, but would not affect membership’s right to make the final decision on contract approval.”
Resolving the WGA strike means writers can continue writing scripts, which could help ease the growing backlog of delayed TV and film projects that have accumulated since May. Many reality shows and other projects that don’t rely on striking actors may resume production immediately.
But studios can’t film most of their scripted projects until they settle a dispute with the largest union, the Screen Actors Guild, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. Thousands of TV and film artists are on hold for the month of July.
Actors, like writers, have been attacked for many reasons — they want better pay and benefits, higher residual payments, and transparency from streaming programs and protections against being replaced by artificial intelligence. But SAG-AFTRA’s specific demands are different from those of the WGA, and it has different leaders and negotiators.
That’s why crises in Hollywood can last weeks or months. It took the studios nearly two months to reach a tentative agreement with the WGA after the two sides resumed negotiations in early August. Renewed talks stalled with little progress and mutual finger-pointing before an extension of closed-door meetings this past week involving the chief executives of Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, NBC Universal and Netflix ended. Studios want writers to get back to work.
In contrast, the studios have yet to request a meeting with SAG-AFTRA negotiators, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, executive director and chief negotiator for the Screen Actors Guild, said before the WGA deal was announced, though the union said it was willing to talk.
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Once SAG-AFTRA meets with the studios and hammers out a tentative contract, the process is very similar to the WGA: The board of directors must first approve the contract, then the actors must vote to approve it, and then they come back. for their jobs.
Erika Werner and Niha Masih contributed to this report.