WGA East Calls for Internal Charges Against Joan Rivers in 'Fashion Police' Dispute

Tim Molloy
The Wrap

"Fashion Police," meet the writer police: The Writers Guild of America East has called for internal charges against Joan Rivers in the dispute with the writers of her E! series.

The Council of the Writers Guild of America, East voted last week to send charges filed against Rivers, a longtime member of WGAE, to a hearing before a three-person trial board.

The union alleges that Rivers violated its rules by writing and performing showrunner duties for the show. Writers Guild members have been on strike against "Fashion Police," since April 17. The writers say they are less than the industry standard and receive no health or pension benefits.

Representatives for Rivers and E! did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The WGAE's governing body determined that, if proven, the charges against Rivers would constitute a violation of their rules. A trial board of three WGAE members will be appointed soon, and Rivers and the writers will be invited to present their sides of the story.

"We are distressed by reports that Joan Rivers, who worked so hard to create an illustrious career, turned her back on other writers who are still building careers of their own,"  said Michael Winship, WGAE President. "The question of whether she has, in fact, violated our working rules will be decided by the trial board. We cannot pre-judge the outcome, but we can say that it is a very serious matter when a member is accused of writing and showrunning on a non-covered show, and continuing to do so after the other writers have decided to go on strike for reasonable pay and benefits."

More to come...

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