Saturday, November 10, 2007

The WGA Strike and Me

The news is erratic about reporting this sort of thing (especially if you're outside of Los Angeles), but if you didn't know, there's a significant Writer's Guild strike going on.

Directly, this doesn't impact me. I'm not yet a member of the WGA and the people I work with aren't part of the struck companies list.

Indirectly the primary impact will be that I'll likely get better deals in the future, should I make it into the WGA at some time. Also--and I think this is a big thing--even those of us not yet working in the big leagues get trickle down sort of benefits. The standards that the WGA establishes are often used as the negotiating basis for my contracts.

As such, while I support the WGA, I also don't want to be "rah-rah, strike forever" since I'm not the one suffering the consequences.

Ideally this gets resolved quickly in a way that'll not only satisfy the WGA membership, but also the Screen Actors Guild membership (who are even more reliant on the strike's key issue, residuals, and thus will also feel forced to go out on strike if a satisfactory result isn't achieved). A quick solution is particularly desirable because, I think unlike most strikes, when the WGA or SAG goes out, they take out a whole bunch of other people's jobs too. Much of that film and TV production has to close down. But, of course, the guilds also can't let the studios hold all these other people hostage as a negotiating point.

Anyway, the little film I wrote on assignment over the summer started production last week and will finish production over the course of next week. I think there will be an official announcement after shooting wraps so I'll wait until then to post more.


Grubber said...

Congrats on the movie Steve. Can't wait to see if it makes it over this side of the pond.

Quin said...

i've been asked to contribute to ghosting something because of the strike.

i asked the person who asked me, "do i look that stupid?"

thankfully, he didn't answer.

to be honest, to make the strike have force, they need the teamsters to go out... that's when you really get the "F*CK YOU!" factor... we are people who sit behind screens or work as basic crew.. they are the large burly people who stop films in their tracks.

i'm rambling aren't i?

congrats on the film.

Steve Peterson said...

Thanks grub and quin.

SAG and the DGA would bring things to a dead stop too, probably even better, but I figure SAG is the main ally in this since the majority of their membership is even more dependent on resids than writers.

Tactically, I think the best method is for a short strike of several weeks now, long enough to hurt but survivable for the WGA, then go back to work without a contract and go back on strike in unison with SAG if the AMPTP doesn't come up with an acceptable offer. The AMPTP might try a lockout, but doing so would hang all weight on them.