Here Are The Shows That Will Be Affected By The Writers Strike

If you've heard reports of a writers strike and you're a tad out the loop, you're in the right place. Here are some common questions about what on earth is happening, answered.

What on earth is happening?

A group of picket signs that say Writers Guild of America on Strike!

In short, around 11,500 film and television writers represented by the Writers Guild of America are striking after failing to reach an agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

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Who are the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers?

A supporter of the Writers Guild of America holding a picket sign in front of a production building with a Netflix sign

It's a trade association that represents huge production companies like, as the WGA points out, "Netflix, Amazon, Apple, Disney, Discovery-Warner, NBC Universal, Paramount, and Sony."

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Why are they striking?

A WGA supporter with picket signs that say Protect Residuals and Live from NY...Writers Guild on Strike

A few reasons: Some of their demands include higher minimum compensation and addressing the use of "mini rooms" — a practice where streamers will shrink the number of writers that would typically be in a writers room and hire them for short-term work, resulting in lower wages and shorter contracts. “There’s too much work and not enough pay,” one demonstrator told the Associated Press.

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Why now?

A WGA supporter holds a sign that says, "AI has no soul"

This isn't out of nowhere: Talks between the WGA and the AMPTP have been breaking down over the course of weeks, and discussions of strikes started around six months ago.

A macro reason is the impact that streaming has had on working conditions for writers. Streamers have essentially eroded residuals, which used to be a significant source of income for writers. AI also factors into this — one of the demands is to, "Regulate use of material produced using artificial intelligence or similar technologies."

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What shows will be affected?

Pete Davidson on SNL's Weekend Update with Colin Jost

Late night shows including Jimmy Kimmel Live!, The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon, The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, and Late Night With Seth Meyers have already halted production. SNL has finished its season early, meaning that reruns will air in the remaining three slots.

Soap operas will be the shows to be impacted more drastically next, given how fast their turnaround times are. The fall television season might also end up delayed, as writing typically starts in May or June.

One of the more subtler ways that TV and movies will be impacted is on properties that already have a finished script, but won't have a writer on hand to facilitate any necessary rewrites that may occur on set (we'll discuss this more later). One of such shows is House of the Dragon, which is going ahead on the scripts it already has.

Streamers already have content banked, and Netflix has said that it can fill any gaps with international releases. Movies are less likely to be affected in any immediate ways, given how long the production cycle for feature length projects is.

Also, in case you were wondering: News writers and reality writers are repped by a different union.

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Out of interest, are any celebs in favor of the strikes?

Rob Lowe shows his support for the WGA as they picket

Yup, including John Mulaney, Quinta Brunson, and Jimmy Fallon. Amanda Seyfried voiced solidarity and said, "I don’t get what the problem is. Everything changed with streaming, and everyone should be compensated for their work. It’s fucking easy.” Ike Barinholtz, Natasha Lyonne, and Rob Lowe all attended protests in LA.

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Hasn't there been a writers strike before?

Wanda Sykes joins the WGA picket line

Yes, the WGA has gone on strike a handful of times, but you're probably thinking of the 2007 strike — which led to some notorious moments, like Conan O'Brien spinning his wedding ring live to fill up on airtime. A season of The Office was lost after their creative team chose not to cross the picket line. The quality of Heroes declined. Friday Night Lights took a weird turn without its writers. All in all, the strike lasted for 100 days.

Over on the movie side, the lack of writers also made its mark. “On Quantum, we were fucked,” Daniel Craig said of working on Quantum of Solace. “We had the bare bones of a script and then there was a writers strike and there was nothing we could do. We couldn’t employ a writer to finish it. I say to myself, ‘Never again,’ but who knows? There was me trying to rewrite scenes — and a writer I am not.’”

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How can I support the WGA?

WGA supporters picket in front of the Paramount Pictures lot

One of the easiest ways, if you're in the right area, is to join the protests (you can see the picket schedule here). If you're an international writer, the Australian, British, and Canadian film and TV unions have advised its members not to take on projects that fill in for US writers.

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You can read more about the WGA demands here.