From today’s ABC News:
Actors represented by the Hollywood union SAG-AFTRA voted Monday evening to authorize a strike if they don’t agree on a new contract with major studios, streamers and production companies by June 30.
The strike authorization was approved by an overwhelming margin — nearly 98% of the 65,000 members who cast votes.
The guild, which represents over 160,000 screen actors, broadcast journalists, announcers, hosts and stunt performers, begins its negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on Wednesday, over a month after the Writers Guild of America began striking over its own dispute with AMPTP. If the actors union ultimately moves forward with the strike, it would be limited to television and film productions; news and broadcast work would not be directly affected.
At stake is increased base compensation, which actors say has been undercut by inflation and the streaming ecosystem, the threat of unregulated use of artificial intelligence, benefit plans and the burden of “self-taped auditions” — the cost of which used to be the responsibility of casting and production.
“We are approaching these negotiations with the goal of achieving a new agreement that is beneficial to SAG-AFTRA members and the industry overall,” the AMPTP said in a statement Monday.
The strike authorization vote, a tool at the bargaining table, comes at a pivotal moment for the industry as 11,500 writers enter their sixth week of striking and the directors guild reviews a recently reached tentative agreement with studios on issues like wages, streaming residuals, and artificial intelligence. Should the actors strike, the industry already hobbled by the writers strike would come to a near-standstill, from production to promoting completed projects.
The WGA, DGA and SAG-AFTRA have shown solidarity with one another since the writers began walking the picket lines on May 2. Many in Hollywood worried about the very real possibility that all three guilds would strike at the same time, as both the directors and the actors contracts were soon due to expire as well.
Read thee complete story here.