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SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP negotiations continue without resolution

Jaguirre2192 | Wikimedia Commons

The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists resumed negotiating with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on Oct. 26. The actors union has been on strike since July 14 and is just one part of ongoing Hollywood labor disputes. 

In recent developments, SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP’s negotiation meeting was postponed to Oct. 26 after the actors’ union concluded that they required extra time to produce responses to the current proposals. Agreements have yet to be reached, and neither union appears to want to concede. Both sides seem to remain on opposite ends of negotiations, with SAG-AFTRA sticking to its demands and AMPTP continuing with subpar counteroffers.

Along with members of SAG-AFTRA, members of the Writers Guild of America—also were on strike. Both unions closely supported each other as they fought for similar causes of equitable pay and artificial intelligence in the entertainment industry. In comparison, the WGA strike started on May 2 and seemingly ended about a month ago on Sept. 27 through a tentative agreement; SAG-AFTRA is continuing its fight. 

SAG-AFTRA has several demands currently being negotiated with AMPTP, the union that represents a large portion of film and television production companies. The strike is meant to highlight all of the following issues: a percentage of the revenue generated by streaming, increase in pay per economic stature, limitations on the use of AI and self-taped auditions, increase in contributions to health care and pension funds and representation for background actors across the United States. 

Currently, SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP are set to continue negotiations on Oct. 31. There are lingering disputes over significant demands despite the positive communication and proactive work that was done over last week. 

One of the most substantial hurdles in negotiation talks is a portion of revenue based on the success of a show on streaming services. SAG-AFTRA initially proposed an 11 percent cut, which they dropped to nine percent. AMPTP responded with a seven percent counteroffer. While the quantitative negotiations are ongoing and seem unrelenting, this excludes the rapidly emergent issue of the use of AI.

SAG-AFTRA has received an overwhelming amount of support from fellow actors. Numerous performers from all over have participated in the strike and publicly shown their admiration for the work being done.

As Halloween approached, SAG-AFTRA insisted that in the name of solidarity, actors refrain from dressing up as characters that appear in union-affiliated productions and instead dress up in generic costumes as zombies or ghosts or even consider dressing as animated characters.

However, several actors were seen in costumes that did not adhere to the guidelines. Among these A-list actors, Megan Fox and her partner Machine Gun Kelly were publicly called out by fellow actress Lisa Ann Walter for wearing costumes inspired by Quentin Tarantino’s hit filmKill Bill.” 

The actress, most recently renowned for her role as Melissa Schemmenti in the hit ABC show Abbott Elementary, disapproved of the actors’ violation. “What a rebel. Keep posturing for stupid sh*t, pretty lady,” she posted on X. “Meanwhile we’ll be working 10 hours a day – unpaid – to get basic contract earners a fair deal (PS-the post responded to members questions. No one cares about kids’ costumes. Just high pros at fancy parties. Like Megan).” Walter’s anger is incredibly apparent through her tweet, and rightfully so, considering all that is at stake. 

It has been an uphill and ongoing battle for SAG-AFTRA and AMPTP. The two unions are cautiously progressing through negotiations with hopes that they will find common ground to finalize a deal that will satisfy both sides. 

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  • M

    MushNov 6, 2023 at 12:34 pm

    Please don’t post old news …it’s misleading

  • R

    RobinNov 6, 2023 at 12:15 pm

    And yet again no one is talking about or offering help to the IATSE members who are losing everything, their homes, cars, savings and health care. When they finally settle they’ll get what they want but we’ll be asked to work for lower wages. It’s already happening. Those A list actors calling for SAG-AFTRA not to “give in” should take care of those who make them look good on screen. Without us there is no you.