The 2023 Writers Guild of America strike may soon be coming to an end.
According to representatives from the WGA, a tentative new deal with Hollywood studios has been reached.
“We have reached a tentative agreement on a new 2023 MBA, which is to say an agreement in principle on all deal points, subject to drafting final contract language. What we have won in this contract – most particularly, everything we have gained since May 2nd – is due to the willingness of this membership to exercise its power, to demonstrate its solidarity, to walk side-by-side, to endure the pain and uncertainty of the past 146 days,” officials told its members in a statement on Sunday.
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Union representatives were negotiating with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) leading to the strike on May 2. The WGA represents entertainment writers working in film, news, television, and online media who were requesting better pay and were asking for other stipulations including duration of employment and staffing commitments.
“It is the leverage generated by your strike, in concert with the extraordinary support of our union siblings, that finally brought the companies back to the table to make a deal. We can say, with great pride, that this deal is exceptional – with meaningful gains and protections for writers in every sector of the membership. What remains now is for our staff to make sure everything we have agreed to is codified in final contract language,” the note continued.
Specific details of the agreement have not been released.
“Once the Memorandum of Agreement with the AMPTP is complete, the Negotiating Committee will vote on whether to recommend the agreement and send it on to the WGAW Board and WGAE Council for approval. The Board and Council will then vote on whether to authorize a contract ratification vote by the membership. If that authorization is approved, the Board and Council would also vote on whether to lift the restraining order and end the strike at a certain date and time (to be determined) pending ratification,” union reps said in the statement.
As for TV shows and movies that have been halted during the negotiations, the update informed members that they will be able to return to work soon, if everything goes as planned.
“This would allow writers to return to work during the ratification vote, but would not affect the membership’s right to make a final determination on contract approval. Immediately after those leadership votes, which are tentatively scheduled for Tuesday if the language is settled, we will provide a comprehensive summary of the deal points and the Memorandum of Agreement,” the statement read. “We will also convene meetings where members will have the opportunity to learn more about and assess the deal before voting on ratification. To be clear, no one is to return to work until specifically authorized to by the Guild. We are still on strike until then. But we are, as of today, suspending WGA picketing.”
While the WGA has made tentative arrangements, the SAG-AFTRA union remains on strike. Officials from the Writers Guild are now encouraging members to join the Screen Actors Guild on picket lines this week.
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