Late last month, the Writers Guild of America was able to come to terms with a new deal with the AMPTP and end their strike. It lasted 148 days, resulting in movie and TV production grinding to a halt for most of the year. Writers are back to work, which has put increased pressure on getting actors back to work as well. What good does a finished TV script do you if you don’t have actors? Clooney, in a statement, had this to say about the new proposals:
“A lot of the top earners want to be part of the solution. We’ve offered to remove the cap on dues, which would bring over $50 million to the union annually. Well over $150 million over the next three years. We think it’s fair for us to pay more into the union. We also are suggesting a bottom-up residual structure — meaning the top of the call sheet would be the last to collect residuals, not the first. These negotiations will be ongoing, but we wanted to show that we’re all in this together and find ways to help close the gap on actors getting paid.”
This newly proposed deal may cost stars like Clooney and Affleck more money annually in dues, but in the long run, it is certainly for the best if it can move the needle towards actually getting a deal done. The longer this drags out, the longer projects get delayed. It will also be harder to sort out actor schedules for those projects once the dust does settle. All the while, actors can’t promote movies and TV shows that are coming out, which is having an impact on the bottom line. Whether or not this gets the AMPTP back to the negotiating table remains to be seen.