Negotiations between Hollywood studios and the SAG-AFTRA actors’ union have been suspended amid disagreements in key areas like pay, dashing hopes that the months-long labor dispute will soon end.
(Bloomberg) — Negotiations between Hollywood studios and the SAG-AFTRA actors’ union have been suspended amid disagreements in key areas like pay, dashing hopes that the months-long labor dispute will soon end.
The Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers, which represents studios such as Walt Disney Co. and Netflix Inc., said that a viewership bonus proposed by the actors’ union would cost more than $800 million per year, creating “an untenable economic burden,” it said in a statement.
The actors’ union said in a statement posted to X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, that the AMPTP had overstated the cost of its revenue share proposal by 60%. It would cost studios less than 57 cents per subscriber each year, it said.
The parties resumed talks last week, aiming to come to an agreement that would resolve the strike that began in July. SAG-AFTRA, which represents about 160,000 performers, is seeking increases in base pay and residual payments from streaming services, as well as protection against the unauthorized use of their likenesses by artificial intelligence.
Read More: Studios’ Labor Focus Shifts to Actors With Writers Deal Clinched
Hollywood ground to a halt this year on twin strikes by writers and actors, which hadn’t happened in 40 years. Studios have had to halt hundreds of film and TV projects, while networks have been forced to reschedule their lineups and release dates of potential blockbusters have been delayed. Observers have put the economic cost of the strikes at $5 billion to $7 billion.
There had been some optimism about working toward a resolution after the screenwriters’ union overwhelmingly approved their new contract with the Hollywood studios, officially ending a strike that started in May.
“It is clear that the gap between the AMPTP and SAG-AFTRA is too great, and conversations are no longer moving us in a productive direction,” the studio alliance said in the statement. On issues such as general wage increases, residuals and viewership bonuses, the AMPTP offered the same terms that were ratified by both the writers’ and directors’ guilds, it said.
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