SAG strike live updates: Hollywood actors join LA and NYC picket lines as union begins first day of strike

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Hollywood actors will join screenwriters in historic strike action after the national board of the SAG-AFTRA union approved a member walkout.

Negotiators for the union unanimously recommended a strike after talks with studios broke down. Scripted TV and movie production will cease immediately in the first dual work stoppage by both actors and writers in 63 years.

The Writers Guild of America has been on strike since early May. Both groups demand increases in base pay and residuals in the streaming TV era plus assurances that their work will not be replaced by artificial intelligence (AI).

Both unions are in dispute with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). Fran Drescher, former star of The Nanny and the president of SAG-AFTRA, said studios’ responses to the actors’ concerns had been “insulting and disrespectful”.

George Clooney has led A-listers voicing support for the strike, while the cast of Oppenheimer left a London premiere prematurely on Thursday night to “go and write their picket signs”.

Meanwhile, Disney CEO Bob Iger condemned the threatened strike action as “very disruptive” at the “worst time” as well as calling the expectations of writers and actors “just not realistic”.

Key points

Fran Drescher says actors guild ready for a long strike

12:10 , Peony Hirwani

SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher says the actors guild is ready for a long strike.

While the duration of the strike is unknown, Drescher says they are looking to the long game.

“Right now, we discussed what it would cost if it went for six months, so we’re looking for the long haul,” said Drescher. “The gravity of a commitment like this is not lost on any of us. It’s major. But we also see that we have no future and no livelihood unless we take this action, unfortunately.”

Watch: Brian Cox ‘absolutely’ supports striking actors and writers

21:05 , Oliver O'Connell

20:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Ms Shindle continues:

If you are offered work of any kind for an #AMPTP employer, don’t take *any* third party’s word for it that “it’s okay” or “it’s not covered by the strike”…Call @sagaftra and ask whether performing the work in question will undermine the strike.

If you don’t know whether you’re being asked to do struck work, that’s understandable; it’s a complex issue. But it’s on each of us to make sure we’re not betraying other workers, even if our faces won’t be on camera. Performing struck work creates a race to the bottom.

Work being withheld by @sagaftra members includes auditioning for #AMPTP projects, being on set, post-production, promotion, and more. When in doubt - or to report strike breaking activity - contact @sagaftra ASAP. Tons of additional info attached.

Every strike is important, but this one is existential. This is a generational battle for a fair and functioning entertainment industry, and our opponents have nearly unlimited resources. But we have the workers. We can do it. #ActorsStrike #1u

What is the response from Broadway and the world of live theatre?

20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

With SAG-AFTRA members joining the Writers Guild of America on strike from today, how does this impact the world of theatre?

Stage actors are represented by the Actors’ Equity Union which has 51,000 members nationwide, both professional actors and stage managers.

Broadway shows will not be affected by the strike as SAG-AFTRA members who appear in live theatre are signed on through Equity contracts, occasionally having dual memberships between unions.

To clarify the union’s position, Equity President Kate Shindle took to Twitter to explain to her members how to avoid breaking the strike.

I cannot overstate how critical it is for members (and future members!) of @ActorsEquity to proactively and aggressively avoid breaking the @sagaftra strike. Know this: the other side will try to pit us against each other to keep churning out content. Don’t fall for it.

Her post also includes a handy guide for SAG-AFTRA members about what they can and can’t do during the strike.

Inigo Montoya joins the picket line

20:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Inigo Montoya joins the picket line. Or stage and screen legend Mandy Patinkin outside of the world of The Princess Bride.

Comment: Hollywood strikes are the result of our addiction to streaming TV

19:40 , Oliver O'Connell

David Arditi writes:

As the television writers’ strike has dragged into its third month, actors are now joining them on the picket lines. Streaming culture was supposed to bring us unlimited access to TV and film content, but it has trapped many actors in a position of insecurity.

Read more...

Opinion: Hollywood strikes are the result of our addiction to streaming TV

Fran Drescher speaks out after backlash over Kim Kardashian selfie during Hollywood strike

19:20 , Oliver O'Connell

Fran Drescher has spoken out in response to the backlash over a selfie with Kim Kardashian that was posted during the negotiations over Hollywood strikes.

Olivia Petter reports.

Fran Drescher responds to backlash over Kim Kardashian selfie during Hollywood strike

What’s the reason behind the strike?

19:00 , Inga Parkel

ICYM: Hollywood’s largest union, SAG-AFTRA, representing 160,000 film and television actors, and the Writers Guild of America (WGA) are demanding increases in base pay and residuals in the streaming TV era plus assurances that their work will not be replaced by artificial intelligence.

Susan Sarandon speaks out on front lines of NYC strike

18:40 , Inga Parkel

‘SAG-AFTRA strong’: Fran Drescher joins LA protests

18:20 , Inga Parkel

SAG-AFTRA officially began striking on Friday (14 July), with its main protests taking place in front of several studios across Los Angeles, including Warner Bros, Netflix, Amazon, Paramount and Fox.

SAG president Fran Drescher, who has become the leading voice and face of the movement, arrived on location of one of the eight LA-based sites.

She was met with excited cheers and applause as she made her way off a bus.

“Workers unite,” Drescher announced before the crowd began to chant: “SAG-AFTRA strong!”

Susan Sarandon ‘feels optimistic’ as she joins New York picket line

18:00 , Inga Parkel

While SAG-AFTRA’s main protests began today (Friday 14 July) in Los Angeles in front of several major production studios, including Sony, Warner Bros and Netflix, New York union members are doing their part on the opposite coast.

Numerous members have gathered in front of Netflix’s and Warner Bros Discovery’s side-by-side New York City offices, holding picket signs and chanting against “corporate greed”.

Among the masses was Susan Sarandon, who spoke to NowThis, saying the strike makes her feel “optimistic”.

“If we stick together, we have power,” the Stepmom star, 76, said.

Studio executive predicts ‘fall festivals are f***ed’ amid actors’ strike

17:40 , Inga Parkel

Along with film premieres, Comic-Con, 90s Con and many more promotional events that are expected to be negatively impacted as a result of the actors’ strike, fall film festivals are also “f***ed”, one studio executive put it bluntly.

“You can’t premiere movies anywhere without your stars,” the executive told Variety. “No stars, no movie.”

The Telluride, Toronto and New York film festivals, which are scheduled for this fall, are at risk of being derailed by the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike, should it last for months.

Colorado’s famed Telluride Film Festival, which is to run from 31 August through 4 September, could potentially remain the least impacted as it doesn’t hold press conferences or step-and-repeats like many others do.

“Telluride will be mostly unaffected,” one studio executive told the outlet. “I can’t say the same for the others.”

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is expected to take place from 7 September through 17 September, followed by the New York Film Festival from 29 September until 15 October.

It’s unknown how long the Hollywood shutdown could last, however, SAG is ready for “the long haul”. So until studios and SAG come to an agreement on a fair contract, this fall might be a risky season for TV and film.

Will the Emmys be affected by the strike?

17:20 , Inga Parkel

Earlier this week, the nominations for the 2023 Emmys were announced with great anticipation. Find the full list of nominees here.

Wednesday (12 July) was a day of celebration for several TV stars, including first-time nominees Ayo Edebiri (The Bear), Jenna Ortega (Wednesday), Jason Segel (Shrinking) and more, who are finally being recognised for their incredible performances.

Typically, the awards ceremony is held in September and broadcast live – this year on Fox.

However, with the actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA’s recent strike approval – whose “rules” bar members from participating in several promotional events, most notably awards shows – the 75th Emmys is preparing for a delay, should the strike last until September.

The Television Academy, in charge of the Emmys, is reportedly at odds with Fox over when to postpone the TV awards.

Before the strike was officially called, the former was gunning for only a two-month delay in November, while the latter preferred a January airdate, according to Variety.

Apparently cancelling the ceremony altogether is not an option, given this year’s 75th landmark anniversary. A final decision is expected to be made by the end of July, insiders told the outlet.

Production on Deadpool 3 halts amid actors strike

17:00 , Inga Parkel

SAG-AFTRA’s strike, which began on Friday morning (14 July), has already had an immediate impact on the industry.

Among the biggest franchises to feel the effects is Marvel’s Deadpool 3, whose production has been halted as a result, according to Deadline.

The news comes days after its leading man Ryan Reynolds teased a first look at Hugh Jackman’s highly anticipated Wolverine return to the MCU on his Instagram Story.

Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman in ‘Deadpool 3’ (Marvel)
Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman in ‘Deadpool 3’ (Marvel)

Jackman reprises his role as the ferocious hero in the third entry to the Deadpool film series. The Australian actor, 54, has portrayed Wolverine across nine superhero films, from X-Men to Logan.

Mark Hamill quotes revolutionary SAG president Fran Drescher

16:40 , Inga Parkel

SAG-AFTRA’s president Fran Drescher has become somewhat of a revolutionary as she leads the strike with her impassioned and fiery speeches.

Star Wars’ Mark Hamill showed his support for the union’s decision to picket by quoting Drescher on Twitter.

"When employers make Wall Street & greed their priority & forget about essential contributors that make the machine run, we have a problem. They plead poverty that they are losing money left & right when they give $100 millions to their CEOs!"- #SAGAFTRA president Fran Drescher #UnionStrong 👊🏼

16:20 , Inga Parkel

No words needed – Laura Linney supports her union!

What actors are going on strike?

16:00 , Inga Parkel

Following SAG-AFTRA’s strike approval, several A-listers voiced their support and joined the picket line.

Releasing a statement to the press, George Clooney became one of Hollywood’s biggest names to voice his support for the strike.

“This is an inflextion point in our industry,” the two-time Oscar winner said. “Actors and writers in large numbers have lost their ability to make a living. For our industry to survive that has to change. For actors, that journey starts now.”

Read more:

George Clooney and Jessica Chastain (Getty Images)
George Clooney and Jessica Chastain (Getty Images)

George Clooney and Jessica Chastain lead A-listers backing historic Hollywood actors strike

SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher announced the union’s approval for actors to join writers’ strike in historic move that hasn’t happened in over 60 years

George Clooney

15:30 , Inga Parkel

Following the actors’ union’s historic approval to join the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike, George Clooney became one of Hollywood’s biggest names to speak out in support of SAG-AFTRA’s decision.

“This is an inflextion point in our industry,” Clooney said in a statement issued to the press.

“Actors and writers in large numbers have lost their ability to make a living,” he added, referring to the WGA screenwriters who’ve been on the picket lines since May.

“For our industry to survive that has to change. For actors, that journey starts now.”

House of the Dragon hit with backlash for continuing filming despite SAG-AFTRA strike

15:10 , Inga Parkel

ICYMI: House of the Dragon is set to continue filming in the United Kingdom this summer despite the Screen Actors Guild strike - due to local union rules.

The second season of the HBO series is likely to proceed with production as scheduled, Variety reported on Thursday (13 July). The cast of the Game of Thrones prequel is primarily composed of British actors working under Equity contracts, rather than SAG-AFTRA. As a result, Equity members aren’t legally allowed to strike in solidarity with the US union, according to the outlet.

Read more:

House of the Dragon hit with backlash for continuing filming despite SAG-AFTRA strike

What are SAG strike rules?

14:50 , Inga Parkel

While the SAG-AFTRA strike’s immediate impact might not easily be understood by those outside of the union, there are actually several “rules” of the strike that, unfortunately, have reverberating consequences.

Beginning today (Friday 14 July), 65,000 of its members who are TV and film actors will be forced to cease all work covered by their union contract, which according to its guidelines, means they will no longer be able to attend premieres, award shows, film festivals, or promote their projects on social media or through interviews.

They are also barred from attending conventions including the popular Comic-Con or 90s Con to promote projects either past or present that have been made under SAG contracts.

What the actors’ strike means for Broadway shows

14:30 , Inga Parkel

While the total membership comprises more than 160,000 people, only the 65,000 performers in TV and film productions are currently participating in the strike.

This means that Broadway performers are currently working as usual, and the theatre industry will not be affected.

Read more:

Striking SAG-AFTRA members join WGA members on the picket lines (Getty Images)
Striking SAG-AFTRA members join WGA members on the picket lines (Getty Images)

What the actors’ strike means for Broadway shows

Screen Actors Guild announced industrial action to coincide with writers’ strike

John Cusack rails against ‘legendary’ Hollywood greed as actors’ strike begins

14:15 , Peony Hirwani

John Cusack is one of several Hollywood stars speaking out about unfair wages for actors as the performers’ union goes on strike.

In a repost of a video showing Sag-Aftra president Fran Drescher speaking out against the “disgusting” greed of film and TV bosses, the High Fidelity star told an anecdote relating to the hit 1989 teen romcom Say Anything, in which his character wooed his love interest by holding a boombox above his head at her bedroom window.

“The greed is almost a legendary comic trope,” he began his post. “One fun fact – when I was a youngin – I did a film (with a boom box) and somehow I got points – net not gross.

“Never expected to see any money but the film became quite famous – so about 10 years ago I looked again at the financial statements they were obligated to report – and to my shock, they claimed they had LOST 44 million dollars on the film.”

Read more:

John Cusack rails against ‘legendary’ Hollywood greed as actors’ strike begins

Watch: Hollywood in historic shutdown as actors union joins writers strike

13:30 , Peony Hirwani

When was the last writers’ strike and how long did it last?

13:00 , Peony Hirwani

The last time WGA went on strike was in 2007.

Back then, writers went on strike to demand better pay reflecting the profits the larger studios were making from their work.

The strike started on 5 November 2007, and ran for exactly 100 days when a deal was reached for an improved MBA.

This strike saw all 12,000 film and television screenwriters belonging to the WGA walk out during this time, picketing and demanding a better deal.

What’s the reason behind the strike?

12:30 , Peony Hirwani

Hollywood’s largest union, SAG-AFTRA, representing 160,000 film and television actors, and the Writers Guild of America (WGA) are demanding increases in base pay and residuals in the streaming TV era plus assurances that their work will not be replaced by artificial intelligence.

12:15 , Peony Hirwani

TV and film editor Fiona Starogardzki says 2023 has been “the most soul-destroying, financially difficult year of my career, but I still support the WGA/ SAG strikes, and hope they manage to secure a better future for us all.”

12:06 , Graeme Massie

John Cusack rails against ‘legendary’ Hollywood greed as actors’ strike begins

11:45 , Peony Hirwani

John Cusack is one of several Hollywood stars speaking out about unfair wages for actors as the performers’ union goes on strike.

In a repost of a video showing Sag-Aftra president Fran Drescher speaking out against the “disgusting” greed of film and TV bosses, the High Fidelity star told an anecdote relating to the hit 1989 teen romcom Say Anything, in which his character wooed his love interest by holding a boombox above his head at her bedroom window.

“The greed is almost a legendary comic trope,” he began his post. “One fun fact – when I was a youngin – I did a film (with a boom box) and somehow I got points – net not gross.

“Never expected to see any money but the film became quite famous – so about 10 years ago I looked again at the financial statements they were obligated to report – and to my shock, they claimed they had LOST 44 million dollars on the film.”

Read more:

John Cusack rails against ‘legendary’ Hollywood greed as actors’ strike begins

Disney chief Bob Iger criticised for calling Hollywood strike ‘very disturbing’

11:30 , Peony Hirwani

Disney CEO Bob Iger has been criticised for saying writers and actors are not being “realistic” with their strike expectations, and calling the prospect of the strike “disturbing”.

During an appearance on CNBC’s Squawk Box on Thursday morning (13 July), hours before the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (Sag-Aftra) began striking, Iger said the decision by the actors’ and writers’ unions to go on strike was “very disturbing to me”.

He said: “We’ve talked about disruptive forces on this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from Covid, which is ongoing, it’s not completely back.

“This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption.”

Read more:

Disney chief Bob Iger criticised for calling Hollywood strike ‘very disturbing’

Actors banned from attending Comic-Con

11:10 , Graeme Massie

The famed event in San Diego is set to start next Thursday, but SAG-AFTRA specifically has banned its members from doing promotion at conventions and fan expos, according to Variety.

Keanu Reeves speaks onstage at Keanu Reeves
Keanu Reeves speaks onstage at Keanu Reeves

Hollywood AI backlash: What striking writers and actors fear about tech replacing roles

10:45 , Peony Hirwani

Hollywood’s actors and writers have both gone on strike for the first time since 1960 to protest against a number of decisions by major studios that include not just job cuts but also a potentially unsettling future in which they could be replaced by artificial intelligence.

The leaders of SAG-AFTRA, the Hollywood union representing 160,000 television and movie actors, went on strike on Thursday, joining the industry’s screenwriters who have already been picketing for over 70 days.

Among the many issues flagged by both the writers and actors in the protests has been how generative AI tools could replace their roles in the industry.

Vishwam Sankaran writes.

What striking Hollywood writers and actors fear about AI replacing roles

Bros actor Guy Branum opens up about how he will now be double striking

10:30 , Peony Hirwani

“Now that I am also striking as an actor, my all my picketing movements will have purpose and my strike character will have a secret,” Guy Branum wrote on Twitter on Thursday.

The Wire showrunner David Simon quote retweeted Branum’s initial tweet and added: “Now that the actors are striking with me, we’re going to workshop the hell out of my rage and entertain picket lines with exquisitely profane one-act plays.”

Issa Rae and Jamie Lee Curtis lead A-listers voicing support for historic Hollywood actors strike

10:04 , Graeme Massie

SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher announced the union’s approval for actors to join writers’ strike in historic move that hasn’t happened in over 60 years.

Issa Rae and Jamie Lee Curtis lead A-listers voicing support for actors strike

Fran Drescher responds to criticism about her Italy trip, Kim Kardashian photo

09:45 , Peony Hirwani

Fran Drescher has responded to criticism for her trip to Italy and her photo with Kim Kardashian days before the SAG strike.

At a press conference during which Drescher officially announced that the union will go on strike, she was asked about the “optics” of being seen taking a “selfie” with Kim Kardashian at Dolce & Gabbana’s Alta Moda event in Italy.

“That wasn’t a selfie,” Drescher said. “I’m a brand ambassador for a fashion company and so is Kim. I had only met Kim seconds before that publicity picture was taken.”

She added: “It had nothing to do with being at a party having fun – it was absolute work.”

The Nanny star also clarified that she left the event around 10pm and met with union negotiators on Zoom, adding that she “worked around the clock in three different time zones.”

“And if I couldn’t get through to them because I was on a plane, I was texting with them constantly throughout the plane ride,” Drescher said.

Emmy nominee Kumail Nanjiani declares his support for SAG-AFTRA

09:30 , Peony Hirwani

Watch: ‘You share the wealth because you cannot exist without us'

09:03 , Graeme Massie

Community star Yvette Nicole Brown says she will be ‘joining the WGA on the picket lines'

08:30 , Peony Hirwani

Yvette Nicole Brown, best known for her role on NBC’s Community, wrote on Twitter that she plans to be on the picket lines.

“We will be joining the WGA on the picket lines starting tomorrow,” Brown wrote.

“We all got together last week to create our signs. I was on sticks! When you’re out there without a splinter thanks to the duct tape, think of ya girl!”

California lawmakers throw support behind striking actors

07:56 , Graeme Massie

Adam Schiff, a Democratic congressman who is running for US Senate in 2024, said in a statement: “I have urged and continue to urge the studios to negotiate with SAG-AFTRA in good faith and come to an agreement that is fair to workers, addresses both long-standing and new issues, and can ensure Hollywood will continue making the movies, shows and productions we all enjoy.”

“I’ll continue to stand with all workers in the entertainment industry who are fighting for better wages, benefits and protections, including WGA members who have been striking for months, and those who may join the picket lines in the coming weeks.”

Adam Schiff (D-CA) speaks at a press conference on committee assignments for the 118th U.S. Congress, at the U.S. Capitol Building on January 25, 2023 in Washington, DC (Getty Images)
Adam Schiff (D-CA) speaks at a press conference on committee assignments for the 118th U.S. Congress, at the U.S. Capitol Building on January 25, 2023 in Washington, DC (Getty Images)

Rep Katie Porter (D-CA), who is also running to replace Senator Dianne Feinstein in 2024, tweeted: “Workers should share in the profits they help create. With studios raking in billions each year, it’s unacceptable SAG-AFTRA members are struggling to get by. I stand with the thousands going on strike and urge studios to make a fair deal.”

Creator of Hair Love and former NFL player Matthew A Cherry shares his views on the SAG strike

07:30 , Peony Hirwani

“Similar to issues found in most sports I feel like one of the biggest fights SAG/AFTRA will have to get ahead of to make sure that people are emphatic towards a vast majority of actors plights is that only a small percent of actors and performers make millions of dollars,” Matthew A Cherry wrote on Twitter on Thursday.

“Most actors have multiple jobs and live check to check like in most other industries,” he added. “If they can keep that in the forefront they’ll win the battle in the media and online because there a lot of people that don’t know the harsh realities of the majority of workers in Hollywood.”

ICYMI: Bob Iger complains actors’ union is threatening to join writers strike at ‘worst time’

07:01 , Graeme Massie

Disney chief Bob Iger has spoken out against the looming potential of the actor’s union joining the writers’ strike, calling the threat “very disturbing”.

Speaking to CNBC’s David Faber at the Sun Valley Conference in Idaho on Thursday (13 July), the CEO, 72, addressed the strike recommended by Sag-aftra, complaining that its timing is the “worst in the world” – as it would effectively shut down Hollywood.

Inga Parkel reports.

Disney boss complains actors are threatening to join writers’ strike at ‘worst time’

Hollywood AI backlash: What striking writers and actors fear about tech replacing roles

06:45 , Peony Hirwani

Hollywood’s actors and writers have both gone on strike for the first time since 1960 to protest against a number of decisions by major studios that include not just job cuts but also a potentially unsettling future in which they could be replaced by artificial intelligence.

The leaders of SAG-AFTRA, the Hollywood union representing 160,000 television and movie actors, went on strike on Thursday, joining the industry’s screenwriters who have already been picketing for over 70 days.

Among the many issues flagged by both the writers and actors in the protests has been how generative AI tools could replace their roles in the industry.

Vishwam Sankaran writes.

What striking Hollywood writers and actors fear about AI replacing roles

Margot Robbie says she is ‘absolutely’ prepared to join actors’ strike

06:30 , Peony Hirwani

Margot Robbie has said she would “absolutely” be prepared to join the actors’ strike if it goes ahead.

Speaking to a reporter, the Barbie actor said: “I’m very much in support of all the unions and I’m a member of SAG so I would absolutely stand by that.”

Barbie actor Margot Robbie says she is ‘absolutely’ prepared to join actors’ strike

House of the Dragon hit with backlash for continuing filming despite SAG-AFTRA strike

06:05 , Graeme Massie

UK law prohibits Equity union from legally calling a strike in support of SAG-AFTRA.

House of the Dragon hit with backlash for continuing filming despite SAG-AFTRA strike

Bob Odenkirk shows his support for SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher

05:30 , Peony Hirwani

Better Call Saul star Bob Odenkirk championed the SAG-AFTRA strike by tweeting out his support for the organisation’s president Fran Drescher.

The 60-year-old actor retweeted a video of Drescher announcing the strike.

“How they plead poverty that they are losing money left and right when they give $100 millions to their CEOs,” she says in the clip. “If we don’t stand tall right now, we are all going to be in jeopardy of being replaced by machines.”

Odenkirk extended his support by writing: “Holy Cow. Go Fran Go! This was a powerful statement. I stand with Fran and everyone in SAG and WGA in this extended moment...onwards.”

What caused the writers to go on strike?

05:01 , Oliver O'Connell

The 11,500 members of the Writers Guild of America went on strike on 2 May after negotiations with Hollywood studios that began in March failed to result in an agreement. The guild has billed the issues behind the labor dispute as “an existential crisis.” Writers say they’re facing a host of new issues brought on by streaming and other recent technological shifts in the industry.

Here’s a look at the demands behind the first Hollywood strike in 15 years, as the industry braces for a long hiatus:

What do striking Hollywood writers want? A look at demands

Jamie Lee Curtis: ‘Time to take down the masks and pick up the signs'

04:30 , Peony Hirwani

ICYMI: Best signs from the Hollywood writers’ strike

04:00 , Oliver O'Connell

If there’s one thing a successful protest needs, it’s punchy picket signs that’ll get people chuckling and resharing.

And who better to rise to the occasion than Hollywood TV and movie writers whose job it is to make every word count?

Inga Parkel took a look at some of the best picket signs at the beginning of the Writers’ strike.

The best signs from the Hollywood writers’ strike

Full story: Hollywood in historic shutdown as actors union joins writers strike

03:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The Screen Actors Guild announced Thursday (13 July) that it would just colleagues in the Writers Guild of America striking for fair wages.

“Because the AMPTP [Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers] remains unwilling to offer a fair deal on key issues essential to protecting the livelihoods of working actors and performers, SAG-AFTRA’s national board unanimously voted to issue a strike order against studios and streamers,” SAG National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland said in a press conference.

“Union members should withhold their labor until a fair contract can be achieved,” he told the room. “They have left us with no alternative.”

Tom Murray has the full story from Los Angeles.

Hollywood in historic shutdown as actors union joins writers strike

Letterman sketch resurfaces amid ongoing writers strikes in Hollywood

02:00 , Oliver O'Connell

An old David Letterman skit has resurfaced amid the ongoing writers’ strikes in Hollywood.

In May, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) went on strike after a deal was not reached with representatives from Hollywood studios.

There is precedent for the strike. In 2007, the WGA took industrial action, with a key issue in the negotiations being royalties from DVD sales.

The 2007/08 strike lasted for 100 days, with nearly 25 per cent of primetime scripted programming over that period lost completely.

A sketch from The Late Show with David Letterman, which aired around that time, has recently gone viral on social media.

Annabel Nugent reports.

‘Classic’ David Letterman sketch resurfaces amid ongoing writers strikes in Hollywood

Zoe Saldana red carpet cancelled for Tuesday night

01:39 , Graeme Massie

The red carpet premiere of Paramount+ series, Special Ops: Lioness, ws cancelled on Tuesday night because of the strike.

“In light of today’s news of an official SAG strike, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the red carpet premiere of Special Ops: Lioness, planned for Tuesday, July 18,” the company said in a statement.

“We recognize this is disappointing news and apologize for any inconvenience it causes,” the statement added, “We are very excited to celebrate the series and can’t wait for it to debut to Paramount+ audiences on July 23rd.”

Hollywood actors speak out about going on strike

01:21 , Graeme Massie

“If we must strike… THEN WE SHALL STRIIIIIIIIKEEEEEEEEE!!!!!” tweeted Jack Quaid, a star of The Boys.

“Very proud and impressed by @sagaftra and @frandrescher right now at this presser. #sagaftrastrong,” tweeted Frozen star Josh Gad.

House of the Dragon and Industry will keep filming in UK

Thursday 13 July 2023 22:40 , Graeme Massie

The hit HBO shows will continue filming in the UK this summer despite the SAG-AFTRA, according to Deadline.

House of the Dragon has a largely British cast working on Equity contracts, not those of the US sister union, the trade publication reported. Industry, which also films in the UK has several US actors in its cast, including Myha’la Herrold and Ken Leung.

SAG-AFTRA members working under Equity contracts have been told that they should “continue to report to work.”

Matt Smith attends the FYC special screening for HBO Max's
Matt Smith attends the FYC special screening for HBO Max's

Thursday 13 July 2023 22:30 , Oliver O'Connell

“We're not going to keep doing incremental changes on a contract that no longer honors what is happening right now with this business model that was foisted upon us,” said SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher.

“What are we doing? Moving around furniture on the Titanic?” she added. “It's crazy.”

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Thursday 13 July 2023 21:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Actor Cynthia Nixon of Sex & the City and And Just Like That fame, posted: “The @sagaftra strike has at last arrived. I am proud to be standing tall with the @WGAWest and @WGAEast as actors and writers together demand a fair share of the record-breaking profits the studios have been reaping from our labor for far too long. We will win this!”

Watch: ‘We are all going to be in jeopardy of being replaced by machines'

Thursday 13 July 2023 21:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Fran Drescher, President of SAG-AFTRA, says while announcing the strike: “If we don’t stand tall right now, we are all going to be in jeopardy of being replaced by machines.”

Thursday 13 July 2023 21:15 , Oliver O'Connell

SAG-AFTRA union President Fran Drescher and Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator, stand at SAG-AFTRA offices after negotiations ended with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (REUTERS)
SAG-AFTRA union President Fran Drescher and Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator, stand at SAG-AFTRA offices after negotiations ended with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (REUTERS)

Thursday 13 July 2023 21:09 , Oliver O'Connell

“Our strike rules will not allow for any form of promotion for television series, streaming series that have been produced under these contracts. My expectation is that it will bring any actor participation in any campaign into a close.”

SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland

AMPTP releases statement

Thursday 13 July 2023 20:35 , Oliver O'Connell

The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers released the following statment upon news of the strike:

A strike is certainly not the outcome we hoped for as studios cannot operate without the performers that bring our TV shows and films to life. The Union has regrettably chosen a path that will lead to financial hardship for countless thousands of people who depend on the industry.

Full story: Hollywood in historic shutdown as actors union joins writers strike

Thursday 13 July 2023 20:32 , Oliver O'Connell

The Screen Actors Guild announced Thursday (13 July) that it would just colleagues in the Writers Guild of America striking for fair wages.

“Because the AMPTP [Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers] remains unwilling to offer a fair deal on key issues essential to protecting the livelihoods of working actors and performers, SAG-AFTRA’s national board unanimously voted to issue a strike order against studios and streamers,” SAG National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland said in a press conference.

It is the first time since 1960 that both actors and writers have picketed film and television productions.

Tom Murray reports for The Independent from Los Angeles.

Hollywood in historic shutdown as actors union joins writers strike

Strike confirmed

Thursday 13 July 2023 20:15 , Oliver O'Connell

 (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
(Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

SAG-AFTRA President Fran Drescher and National Executive Director & Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland announce the national board voted unanimously for the strike.

The majority of the 160,000 members will walkout from midnight tonight.

An impassioned Ms Drescher stresses the seriousness of the strike and the impact it has and the message it sends to the wider labour movement worldwide.

“The gig is up,” she tells the AMPTP, adding they must share the wealth.

Slamming Hollywood executives she said: “They plead poverty, that they’re losing money left and right, when giving hundreds of millions of dollars to their CEOs. It is disgusting — shame on them.”

Thursday 13 July 2023 20:09 , Oliver O'Connell

Full story: Oppenheimer cast walk out of UK premiere in ‘solidarity’ with actors’ strike

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:57 , Oliver O'Connell

The cast of Oppenheimer left a London premiere prematurely to “go and write their picket signs” in preparation for the “imminent” strike by the actors’ union.

On Thursday (13 July), lead actors of Christopher Nolan’s highly anticipated war biographic, including Cillian Murphy, Florence Pugh, Matt Damon, Emily Blunt and Ramy Malek, walked out of the film’s UK premiere in solidarity with Sag-Aftra.

Inga Parkel reports.

Oppenheimer cast walk out of UK premiere in ‘solidarity’ with actors’ strike

Who is on the national board of SAG-AFTRA?

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:46 , Oliver O'Connell

The SAG-AFTRA national board is made up of dozens of members and they will currently be voting on the strike action.

Among the notable names on the board are union President Fran Drescher, Sean Astin, Jennifer Beals, Yvette Nicole Brown, Brad Garrett, Elliott Gould, Dulé Hill, Rosie O’Donnell, Michael Rapaport, and Sharon Stone.

Watch: Cast of ‘Oppenheimer’ leave UK premiere, Christopher Nolan confirms

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:36 , Oliver O'Connell

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Actor Matthew Modine shares message of solidarity from Galway Film Fleadh

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:25 , Oliver O'Connell

Actor Matthew Modine has shared a message of solidarity having arrived in Ireland for what was supposed to be the world premier of a movie he originally filmed in 1998 with Sir Derek Jacobi and John Cleese.

He says: “Tonight was supposed to be our world premier, a celebration thwarted by unforeseen circumstances. But sometimes, sacrifices must be made on the path to victory.”

Read his full statement here:

'Oppenheimer’ cast will leave UK premiere if strike called

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:10 , Oliver O'Connell

 (PA)
(PA)

Variety reports that the cast of Oppenheimer will leave the London premiere if the SAG-AFTRA strike is called.

“We talked about it,” actor Matt Damon told the outlet on the red carpet. “Look, if it’s called now, everyone’s going to walk obviously in solidarity … Once the strike is officially called, [we’re walking]. That’s why we moved this [red carpet] up because we know the second it’s called, we’re going home.”

He added: “We gave the strike authorisation. We voted 98 per cent to 2 per cent to do that because we know our leadership has our best interest at heart.”

“It’s really about working actors,” he added. “It’s $26,000 to qualify for health coverage and a lot of people are on the margins and residual payments are getting them across that threshold. This isn’t an academic exercise. This is real life and death stuff. Hopefully we get to a resolution quickly. No one wants a work stoppage, but we’ve got to get a fair deal.”

Co-star Emily Blunt told Variety: “Obviously we stand we all of the actors and at whatever point it’s called, we’re going to be going home and standing together through it because I want everyone to get a fair deal.”

Asked whether she’ll be joining the picket line herself, she said: “Oh, I think so!”

The red carpet for the highly-anticipated Christopher Nolan movie began shortly before 5pm London-time (12pm ET, 9am PT). SAG-AFTRA are holding a press conference at their Los Angeles headquarters at 12 noon PT.

Disney boss complains actors’ union is threatening to join writers strike at ‘worst time’

Thursday 13 July 2023 19:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Disney chief Bob Iger has spoken out against the looming potential of the actor’s union joining the writers’ strike, calling the threat “very disturbing”.

Appearing on CNBC’s Squawk Box on Thursday (13 July), the CEO, 72, addressed the strike recommended by Sag-aftra, complaining that its timing is the “worst in the world” – as it would effectively shut down Hollywood.

Inga Parkel has the details.

Disney boss complains actors are threatening to join writers’ strike at ‘worst time’

Why might Hollywood actors join striking writers and what is at stake?

Thursday 13 July 2023 18:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Hollywood actors may be on the verge of joining screenwriters in what would be the first two-union strike in the industry in more than six decades, with huge consequences for film and television production.

Here is a look at how it could play out, and why it’s happening.

Hollywood's actors may join its writers on strike. Here's why

Letterman sketch resurfaces amid ongoing writers strikes in Hollywood

Thursday 13 July 2023 18:00 , Oliver O'Connell

An old David Letterman skit has resurfaced amid the ongoing writers’ strikes in Hollywood.

In May, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) went on strike after a deal was not reached with representatives from Hollywood studios.

There is precedent for the strike. In 2007, the WGA took industrial action, with a key issue in the negotiations being royalties from DVD sales.

The 2007/08 strike lasted for 100 days, with nearly 25 per cent of primetime scripted programming over that period lost completely.

A sketch from The Late Show with David Letterman, which aired around that time, has recently gone viral on social media.

Annabel Nugent has the story.

‘Classic’ David Letterman sketch resurfaces amid ongoing writers strikes in Hollywood

SAG-AFTRA press conference scheduled for 12 noon pT

Thursday 13 July 2023 17:36 , Oliver O'Connell

The union will hold a press conference today, Thursday 13 July, at 12 noon Pacific Time at SAG-AFTRA Plaza in Los Angeles, following the conclusion of the National Board vote.

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Read full statement from SAG-AFTRA leadership

Thursday 13 July 2023 17:30 , Oliver O'Connell

The leadership of the actors’ union SAG-AFTRA released the following statement late on Wednesday night.

Dear Member,

After more than four weeks of negotiations, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) — the entity that represents major studios and streamers, including Amazon, Apple, Disney, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Paramount, Sony, and Warner Bros Discovery — remains unwilling to offer a fair deal on the key issues that you told us are important to you. Because of this, we’ve called for a meeting with our National Board this morning to vote on a strike order.

From the time negotiations began on June 7, the members of our Negotiating Committee and our staff team have spent many long days, weekends and holidays working to achieve a deal that protects you, the working actors and performers on whom this industry relies. As you know, over the past decade, your compensation has been severely eroded by the rise of the streaming ecosystem. Furthermore, artificial intelligence poses an existential threat to creative professions, and all actors and performers deserve contract language that protects them from having their identity and talent exploited without consent and pay. Despite our team’s dedication to advocating on your behalf, the AMPTP has refused to acknowledge that enormous shifts in the industry and economy have had a detrimental impact on those who perform labor for the studios.

Though we’ve engaged in negotiations in good faith and remained eager to reach a deal that sufficiently addressed performer concerns, the AMPTP’s responses to our proposals have not been adequate.

We will update you immediately after the National Board’s vote and information will be provided on how the strike impacts your ability to work. Details on picket times and locations will be provided as well. Please check your inbox.

Our ninety-year history is a testament to what can be achieved through our conviction and unity. For the future of our profession, we stand together.

In unity,

Fran DrescherPresident

Duncan Crabtree-IrelandNational Executive Director & Chief Negotiator

Deadline for Hollywood actors negotiations with studio passes

Thursday 13 July 2023 17:12 , Oliver O'Connell

A deadline for Hollywood actors to reach a deal with studios and streaming services passed Thursday without word on whether a strike will be called.

The Screen Actors Guild -American Federation of Television and Radio Artists had set a deadline for 11:59 p.m. Wednesday — mere hours after this year’s Emmy nominations were announced — for a deal to be reached. Just after midnight Thursday, no update had been announced.

If the actors strike, they will formally join screenwriters on the picket lines outside studios and filming locations in a bid to get better terms from studios and streaming giants like Netflix and Amazon. It would be the first time since 1960 that the two guilds are on strike at the same time.

Read more...

Deadline for Hollywood actors negotiations with studio passes with no word on strike

Watch: Fran Drescher slams Hollywood execs as actor strike is announced

Thursday 13 July 2023 20:34 , Graeme Massie