SAG-AFTRA, which began negotiations for a new contract on Wednesday, said today that its negotiating strategy has not changed following the initial deal struck last night by the Directors Guild and the studios.
“Our negotiating strategy has never depended on nor has it depended on the outcome or status of any other union negotiation, nor do we subscribe to the philosophy that the terms of deals with other unions bind us,” said SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director Duncan Crabtree – Ireland said in a letter published today. on the union’s website. “We continue to stand in strong solidarity with the members of the WGA and with their strike, and we congratulate the DGA on their negotiation and look forward to reviewing the detailed terms of their agreement as soon as possible.”
Meanwhile, the Writers’ Union said today that its month-long strike will continue unabated and that its negotiating positions will “remain the same” as they were at the start of the strike on May 2.
Related: DGA Deal on WGA New Contract Changes Dynamics, But Won’t End in Strike – Analysis
SAG-AFTRA members are currently voting to give its National Council the power to call a strike if negotiations with the Motion Picture and Television Producers Alliance fail to reach an acceptable agreement by June 30.
In seeking this mandate, SAG-AFTRA said that “Our goal in these negotiations is to ensure that our members working in film, television, and broadcast/new media can continue to earn a professional living through a contract that honors our contributions. We need a contract that will increase contributions to our plans.” Our benefits and protect members from income erosion due to inflation and low residuals, the unregulated use of generative AI, and the demand for self-scoring tests.”
In SAG-AFTRA’s first public statement about the new DGA deal, Crabtree-Ireland wrote that “While the DGA has issued some points reflecting the main gains in the agreement, we have not yet had an opportunity to review the details of the agreement. Therefore, it would be premature to express any Opinion on terms from a SAG-AFTRA perspective.”
Referring to the upcoming start of the SAG-AFTRA negotiations, he said: “As we have done throughout this process, we will remain in close contact with our sister unions, especially the WGA and the DGA, and will seek to benefit from the insights we have benefited from the negotiation process and the progress they have made on common issues.” Of course, the needs of SAG-AFTRA members are unique, and each area of focus in our negotiations is geared to serving those interests.”
DGA’s deal with AMPTP, reached late last night, “delivers significant breakthroughs in addressing the international growth of the entertainment industry and delivers significant gains across key economic and creative rights while reaffirming the critical role of DGA principals and their teams,” DGA leaders said.
Its provisions include what the DGA calls “leading pay and benefits gains,” a 76% increase in global streaming tailings, and language that asserts that generative AI “cannot replace duties performed by members.”
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