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  • 3

  • YEARS, ACTORS AND WRITERS ARE

  • STRIKING AT THE SAME TIME,

  • BRINGING HOLLYWOOD MOVIE AND TV

  • PRODUCTION TO A HALT.

  • THE WRITERS GUILD HAS BEEN ON

  • STRIKE SINCE MAY AND SAG-AFTRA,

  • THE UNION REPRESENTING TV AND

  • FILM ACTORS, JOINED THEM LAST

  • WEEK AFTER NEGOTIATIONS WITH

  • STUDIOS BROKE OFF.

  • TWO OF THE KEY ISSUES AT THE

  • CENTER OF THESE STRIKES, HOW

  • STREAMING AND ARTIFICIAL

  • INTELLIGENCE ARE UPENDING THE

  • PROFITS., AFFECTING INCOME AND

  • WE SHOULD NOTE, THE NEWSHOUR IS

  • IN ACTIVE NEGOTIATIONS WITH

  • SAG-AFTRA TO REPRESENT SOME OF

  • THE EDITORIAL STAFF.

  • BROADCAST JOURNALISTS ARE NOT

  • COVERED BY THE SAME CONTRACT AS

  • THE ACTORS IN SAG-AFTRA

  • CURRENTLY ON STRIKE.

  • LET'S TURN NOW TO THE PRESIDENT

  • OF SAG-AFTRA WHO JOINS US NOW.

  • WELCOME TO THE NEWSHOUR.

  • FRAN: THANK YOU SO MUCH.

  • I AM A PROUD SUPPORTER OF PBS,

  • AND VERY HAPPY TO BE HERE.

  • GEOFF: WE APPRECIATE THAT.

  • MAJOR ACTORS GUILD STRIKES ARE

  • FAIRLY RARE, ESPECIALLY

  • RECENTLY.

  • LOOKING BACK AT THE CONTRACT WAS

  • RATIFIED IN 2020 BY SAG-AFTRA,

  • IT WAS APPROVED BY NEARLY 75% OF

  • THE VOTING MEMBERSHIP.

  • THERE WERE WAGE INCREASES,

  • IMPROVED RESIDUALS OR CONTINUED

  • PAYMENTS FOR VIDEO STREAMING.

  • FAST-FORWARD TO THE CURRENT

  • MOMENT, WHAT HAPPENED?

  • WHY WAS NOW THE RIGHT MOMENT TO

  • GO OUT ON STRIKE?

  • FRAN: I MEAN LOOK, I WAS NOT IN

  • LEADERSHIP THEN.

  • I DON'T KNOW WHETHER I WOULD

  • HAVE BEEN SO QUICK TO AGREE WITH

  • THAT CONTRACT.

  • BUT I THINK AT SOME POINT, YOU

  • REACH ACROSS ROADS -- REACH A

  • CROSSROADS.

  • THE SATURATION OF STREAMING AND

  • HOW IT HAS IMPACTED OUR INDUSTRY

  • IS EXPONENTIAL.

  • AND IT IS THE RISK -- IT HAS

  • DISEMBOWELED THE OLD BUSINESS

  • MODEL, WHICH IS THE ONE THAT

  • LET'S SAY, THE NANNY FLOURISHED

  • IN.

  • AND EVERYBODY UP AND DOWN THE

  • LADDER BENEFITED BY IT, AND MADE

  • MONEY OFF OF IT.

  • TO THIS DAY, THEY CONTINUE TO

  • GET MONEY FROM IT.

  • BUT THAT IS NOT THE CASE

  • ANYMORE.

  • WITH STREAMING.

  • AND ALL OF THE PROGRAMS THAT ARE

  • MADE FOR THE STREAMING CHANNEL,

  • YOU EXIST IN A BOX, IN A VACUUM,

  • AND THERE IS NO TAIL OF REVENUE.

  • AND OUR REVENUE SHARING THAT WAS

  • ESTABLISHED IN 1963, BORN 1960,

  • -- OR 1960, WHEN WE HAD THE BIG

  • STRIKE WITH THE WGA AND RONALD

  • REAGAN WAS PRESIDENT OF SAG.

  • THAT BUSINESS MODEL WAS

  • PREDICATED OFF OF TELEVISION

  • THAT RAN AS LONG AS THERE WERE

  • EYEBALLS AND ADD DOLLARS.

  • LONGEVITY WAS THE NAME OF THE

  • GAME.

  • THAT MADE SENSE.

  • BUT NOW, LONGEVITY IS NOT THE

  • NAME OF THE GAME.

  • SEASONS ARE VERY SHORT.

  • 324, MAYBE, AND THEN IT IS OVER.

  • GEOFF: WHEN YOU ARE STARRING IN

  • "THE NANNY," THAT WAS A SEASON

  • THAT STARTED IN SEPTEMBER, RAN

  • THROUGH MAY, IT WAS 22 TO 24

  • EPISODES A SEASON.

  • NOW ON STREAMING, A SHOW IS

  • LUCKY IF THEY HAVE 10 EPISODES A

  • SEASON, AND THEY ARE LUCKY IF

  • THEY GET A SECOND SEASON.

  • WHAT DOES THAT MEAN IN TERMS OF

  • TAKE-HOME PAY?

  • FRAN: YOU CAN'T MAKE A LIVING.

  • THE ECONOMICS HAVE BEEN CHANGED

  • SO DRAMATICALLY THAT WE HAVE TO

  • MOVE OVER INTO THE POCKET WHERE

  • THE MONEY IS.

  • WE HAVE TO FOLLOW THE MONEY.

  • BUT EVEN WITHIN THE OLD

  • STRUCTURE, EVEN WITHIN PEOPLE

  • WORKING IN THESE LIMITED SERIES,

  • THEY DON'T WANT TO RAISE

  • MINIMUMS.

  • SO THEY ARE EXPECTING MY MEMBERS

  • WHO EARN MINIMUMS ON THEIR

  • PERFORMANCE TO EARN LESS THAN

  • THEY DID IN REAL MONEY IN 2020,

  • ALL THE WAY THROUGH TO 2026.

  • THEY REFUSE TO GIVE US WHAT THE

  • ECONOMY DEMANDS.

  • MOST OF THEIR LABOR UNIONS GET

  • COST-OF-LIVING RAISES.

  • GEOFF: WE SHOULD SAY WE

  • REQUESTED INTERVIEWS WITH STUDIO

  • HEADS AND WITH THE ALLIANCE OF

  • MOTION PICTURE AND TELEVISION

  • PERVERT -- TELEVISION PRODUCERS,

  • ALL OF WHOM DECLINED.

  • BUT THEY DID PROVIDE A

  • STATEMENT, PART OF WHICH READS

  • THIS WAY.

  • THE DEAL THAT SAG-AFTRA WALKED

  • AWAY FROM ON JULY 12 IS WORTH

  • MORE THAN $1 BILLION IN WAGE

  • INCREASES, PENSION, AND HEALTH

  • CONTRIBUTIONS, AND RESIDUAL

  • INCREASES AND INCLUDES FIRST OF

  • THEIR KIND PROTECTIONS OVER ITS

  • THREE YEAR TERM, INCLUDING

  • EXPRESSLY WITH RESPECT TO AI.

  • OR ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE.

  • WHY WAS THIS DEAL, AS YOU SEE

  • IT, INSUFFICIENT?

  • WHAT ARE YOU ASKING FOR?

  • FRAN: FIRST OF ALL, DON'T

  • BELIEVE A WORD OF THAT.

  • THAT IS THE FIRST THING.

  • THE SECOND THING IS BECAUSE THE

  • REAL QUESTION IS THOSE CEOS ARE

  • MAKING $78,000 A DAY.

  • AND THE MAJORITY OF MY MEMBERS,

  • LIKE NINE OUT OF 10 OF THEM,

  • CAN'T EVEN QUALIFY FOR HEALTH

  • BENEFITS THAT HAVE A THRESHOLD

  • OF $26,000 A YEAR.

  • WHY WOULD WE GO ON STRIKE IF IT

  • WAS SUCH A FANTASTIC DEAL?

  • DO YOU THINK WE ENJOY BEING OUT

  • OF WORK?

  • DON'T BELIEVE A WORD THAT THEY

  • SAY.

  • WHEN THEY OFFER AS A DEAL AND

  • THEY SAY THAT A BACKGROUND

  • PERSON WILL GET PAID FOR ONE

  • DAYS WORK, WE WILL SCAN THEIR

  • BODIES, AND THEN WE CAN USE

  • THEIR LIKENESS IN PERPETUITY,

  • WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO THAT

  • BACKGROUND PERSON?

  • HE IS OUT OF WORK.

  • HE HAS BEEN REPLACED BY AI.

  • THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE.

  • THAT IS A DEALBREAKER.

  • GEOFF: YOU KNOW THE POSITION OF

  • THE STUDIO CHIEFS TO INCLUDE BOB

  • IGER, CEO OF THE ASH OF DISNEY

  • WHICH OWNS ABC, A NUMBER OF

  • CABLE NETWORKS, AND STREAMING

  • PLATFORMS.

  • HE MAKES THE CASE THE UNION IS

  • NOT BEING REALISTIC.

  • HE DOES HAVE A POINT, THAT THE

  • BUSINESS HAS CHANGED.