Historic Hollywood Writers’ Strike Comes to an End
After 148 days of strike, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) has voted to end the historic labor battle. The strike, which is now the second longest in WGA history, will officially conclude on Wednesday at 12:01 am PT. This decision was made by guild leadership, authorizing the return to work for approximately 11,500 members.
For months, writers were prohibited from various tasks due to strike rules, including pitching, selling scripts, taking meetings, and responding to notes. However, with the strike coming to an end, these activities will now be sanctioned, and writers’ rooms can reconvene.
It is important to note that the vote by guild leadership does not affect the membership’s right to make the final determination on contract approval. The WGA negotiating committee emphasized that this decision allows writers to return to work during the ratification process.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, representing the studios, and the WGA reached a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract on Sunday night. This agreement came after a full weekend of negotiations, with major industry leaders such as Disney’s Bob Iger, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos, Warner Bros. Discovery’s David Zaslav, and NBCUniversal’s Donna Langley in attendance.
Issues that were previously at a standstill saw progress during the negotiations, including minimum staffing in television writers’ rooms and rewarding writers for the success of streaming projects. The regulation of artificial intelligence proved to be a lasting stumbling block, but eventually, a compromise was reached.
On Tuesday, the WGA West board and the WGA East council approved the deal, leading to the vote to end the restraining order against AMPTP member companies.
While the writers’ strike is coming to a close, another labor standoff remains unresolved in the entertainment industry. SAG-AFTRA is still on strike, and no new bargaining dates have been announced yet. The deadlock between SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP centers around issues such as general wage increases, sharing platform subscriber revenue with union members when streaming projects succeed, and regulations on artificial intelligence. Without a resolution, production cannot resume fully without principal performers.
Despite this ongoing strike, the end of the writers’ strike is seen as a significant milestone in resolving labor disputes in Hollywood. The agreement reached between the WGA and the studios is being hailed as “exceptional” by the WGA, paving the way for writers to get back to work and the entertainment industry to move forward.