In a unanimous vote the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) have approved an offer from the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) to end their 118 day strike.
The move comes one month after the Writers Guild of America (WGA) struck a similarly successful deal with the AMPTP, and sees a similar 3 year deal in place for SAG-AFTRA members, including rights with regard to streaming residuals, fair use of A.I., and pension and health contributions.
In a statement to its members, SAG-AFTRA addressed today’s deal:
“In a contract valued at over one billion dollars, we have achieved a deal of extraordinary scope that includes ‘above-pattern’ minimum compensation increases, unprecedented provisions for consent and compensation that will protect members from the threat of AI, and for the first time establishes a streaming participation bonus.
“Our Pension & Health caps have been substantially raised, which will bring much needed value to our plans. In addition, the deal includes numerous improvements for multiple categories including outsize compensation increases for background performers, and critical contract provisions protecting diverse communities.”
From today, 12:01 AM (PT) Thursday, Nov. 9. The strike is suspended, and pickets are officially closed, meaning over 160,000 artists can now return to work. Or continue to be unemployed actors looking for work. Whichever the case may be.
For TV fans questions now arise as to when they might see the return of their favorite shows.
The 2023/24 Primetime Broadcast schedule has been largely decimated by what many consider the AMPTP’s refusal to agree to writers’ and actors’ demands in the face of an evolving landscape that has seen studios and streamers, with vast libraries of content, raking in record profits, and raising subscriptions this year. (Netflix’s projected free cash flow will be about $1.5bn greater this year than originally estimated, due to the strikes.)
Most procedural dramas airing on US broadcast channels — ABC, NBC, FOX, and CBS — might see 5-6 episodes of their current seasons air mid-season (meaning January-March 2024), while cable and streaming tentpole fare such as HBO’s The Last of Us, and Netflix’s Stranger Things most likely won’t see new episodes on screen until early 2025.
Commenting on today’s deal the AMPTP said “The AMPTP is pleased to have reached a tentative agreement and looks forward to the industry resuming the work of telling great stories.”
In their statement today, SAG-AFTRA noted “We have arrived at a contract that will enable SAG-AFTRA members from every category to build sustainable careers. Many thousands of performers now and into the future will benefit from this work.”
Follow The Bulldog Edition @TheBulldogEd for more TV and Film scoop.